In Remembrance, Thomas Peña

By DJ Patton, Project Healing Waters


Thomas Peña, born in Albuquerque, NM, passed away at UNMH in Albuquerque after loosing his battle with liver disease on January 23, 2021, at sixty-five years old. Thomas was truly a renaissance man. He was a published author and photographer, world-traveler, ESL instructor, loving husband and father, home chef and baker par excellence, and fly fishing instructor extraordinaire.

He was a lifelong learner, and attended college at California State University, Los Angeles, Universidad Compultense de Madrid, and the University of New Mexico studying studio art and Spanish language and literature.

He proudly served his country as a Sergeant in the US Marine Corps and was an Embassy Marine. He taught fly fishing and fly tying thru UNM Recreational Services for over two decades. More recently he applied his passion for fly fishing to serve his fellow veterans as a volunteer with Project Healing Waters.

Thomas leaves behind his wife of over 25 years, Kathy Bell-Peña and three children Mariana, JJ, and Isabel, as well as friends and family throughout the world. He was interred at Santa Fe National Cemetery with military honors on Thursday, February 4, 2021.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Albuquerque Chapter of Project Healing Waters, c/o NM Trout at: