Thomas Edwin Benedict Jr.


Thomas Edwin Benedict Jr., a lifelong adventurer, musician, writer, artist, avid reader, and lover of learning, passed away on April 29, 2023, in Oak Bluffs, on the Island he loved, leaving behind a legacy of passion and creativity. He was 71 years old. 

Born in Washington, D.C., on July 22, 1951, Tom grew up in Binghamton, N.Y., with a love of adventure. He graduated from Notre Dame University, of which he was always proud, and continued to pursue learning throughout his life.

Tom’s many adventures ranged from cycling across the country from New York to Washington State, to kayaking down the Susquehanna River. He went on boat expeditions, traveled solo to Hungary, played at bluegrass festivals, and lived a life full of passion and wonder. In 1978, Tom migrated to the Vineyard, where he fell in love with the Island’s beauty and became an integral part of the community. He lived life on his terms, and pursued his passions relentlessly, inspiring those around him to do the same. Tom’s love for music, writing, reading, and learning was apparent in everything he did. 

Tom is survived by his daughters, Carissa and Maren, and their beautiful families; by his four siblings, William, Patricia, James, and David; and by his nieces, nephews, cousins, and aunt. He is now reunited with his beloved grandparents; parents Thomas Edwin Benedict Sr. and Marie; and his fiancée Charlotte.

Tom’s life was filled with adventure, love, creativity, and a never-ending thirst for knowledge. He will be deeply missed by all who knew him, and his legacy will live on in the hearts of those he touched throughout his life. Per his request, no services will be held.


  1. I was lucky to call Tom a friend. He lived his life to his own drummer and lived it well.
    Honest, insightful, and a person who could always be counted on. I will miss your smile and the spark that was always in your eyes.


  2. I have known Tom since he moved to the Vineyard in 1978. Eventually, he lived across the street from my family, and until last fall, remained there. He was kind, smart, interesting, passionate and always intellectually curious. He was delightful company, regaling us with stories of his adventures. Tom was a never-wavering constant on the Vineyard, and I can hardly think of the island without thinking of him and those sparkling blue eyes. His passing is a great loss, and he will be sorely missed.

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