In Memory

Tom Alder

Tom Alder

Salt Lake City, Utah-Thomas Robert Moyle Alder, 68, passed away at his home in Salt Lake City on July 3, after having suffered for some time with frontotemporal degeneration (FTD). Tom is remembered by his wife of 46 years, Linda Homer Alder, and son Nick Alder. He is also survived by his sister Julie Anderson and nineteen beloved nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, Carleton Caine Alder, and Rebecca Kathryn Moyle Alder, and his brothers Peter, Caine, and Craig.

Tom believed that service to others was a given. He was dedicated to his family, his friends, and his neighbors. Descended from a long line of Mormon Democrats, he was a lifelong member of the Democratic Party and the LDS Church. He spoke often of his mission in Eastern Canada, and how it helped to shape his understanding of the importance of connecting with people and establishing lasting relationships. If Tom met you, he remembered you.

Throughout his life, Tom dedicated himself to making a positive difference in the world, with a special focus on helping those in need. He volunteered for a myriad of causes, served as president of a local chapter of the National Exchange Club, and provided service to the Boy Scouts of America. He was an active supporter of civil and LGBTQ rights, economic equality, universal healthcare and other causes of the Left-which for Tom was the right.

Born in Holladay, Utah, the youngest of five children, Tom was a lifelong resident of Salt Lake City. After attending the University of Utah for undergraduate studies in management, he spent several decades in leadership roles with Chase Manhattan Bank and Zions Bank. In 2004, he returned to the U of U and earned a Master's Degree in Art History. He left banking behind, and embarked on a second career as an art historian and dealer. Eventually he established Alderwood Fine Art with a gallery located on South Temple.

Tom was a leading expert in the art of Henri Moser, an early Utah artist, who studied in Paris shortly after the beginning of the Fauvist movement. He authored scores of articles on early Utah artists and, for several years, taught the subject at the University of Utah Osher Lifelong Learning Center. Tom was an avid collector of art and strove to foster the careers of contemporary Utah artists whose work he admired. He was appointed to the board of the Utah Arts Council by Governor Herbert, and served on the boards of the College of Fine Arts, University of Utah; Friends of Utah and Western Art; the Salt Lake County Art Board; and the Utah Cultural Celebration Center.

Tom lived life to its fullest. He loved people. He was a quick wit-a class clown. Linda remembers fondly that he charmed her in high school through a series of corny pranks. The two travelled much of world together and with their son Nick. Tom was never idle; he was an active gardener, stamp collector, coin collector, rockhounder, keeper of classic film trivia, and a great cook. Tom inherited a love of Mahjong from his mother, and was eager to get anyone he could to play.

He formally retired in 2016 with hopes of continued travel, hobbying, relaxation, and spending time with his children, Nick and Jim Bredeson. Even as the circumstances of his illness began to allow for fewer possibilities, Tom continued to enjoy some his favorite activities: taking care of three Cavalier King Charles Spaniels (Harper, Kitty, and Lily) and hiking the Bonneville Trail almost every day. His niece Ashley Homer, and Cherish Thompson, were devoted caregivers with Linda during the last months of his life.

If Tom met you, he remembers you.

There will be viewing and visitation on Monday, July 9 from 6 to 8 PM at Wasatch Lawn Memorial Park Funeral Home (3401 S Highland Drive). A memorial service will be held on Tuesday, July 10 at 11:00 AM at the Post Chapel of the University of Utah (120 South Fort Douglas Blvd), parking available. Interment will follow at Wasatch Lawn.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Tom's honor may be sent to the Association for Frontotemporal Degeneration, an organization dedicated to improving the quality of life of people affected by FTD and driving research to a cure. Visit

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09/08/18 04:34 PM #1    

Howie Mitchell

I just want to honor Tom on this day of our reunion. I have had the privilege to see Tom from time to time since we have lived in the same neighborhood for a few years.  What an amazing man! He always welcomed you when he saw you, was always so friendly, caring, and and would do anything to help you or your family. I will raise a toast to him and Linda tonight and feel blessed to have known him.

Howie Mitchell


09/09/18 01:08 PM #2    

Brian Moench

Thanks, for posting Howie.  Beautiful tribute.

09/09/18 02:18 PM #3    

Sheri Sohm

Tom was one of the monst popular teachers at the U of U  OSHER classes. I took his class on early Utah Artists. Tom had a following, and kept his students interested and laughing. We will all miss his fun personality and Utah has lost a great art scholar.

from Sheri Sohm 

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