In Memoriam - J. Thomas Lanka, DDS
Monday, January 29, 2018
John Thomas “Tom” Lanka, DDS, died peacefully Sunday, January 28 at home in Galway, New York, surrounded by his loving family. Dr. Lanka served as ACOMS President from 2009-2010.
Dr. Lanka was a tribute to our specialty. He served the College for over 30 years and distinguished himself as a man of the highest character and an outstanding surgeon and educator. He will be deeply missed.
-Dr. R. Bryan Bell
Born in Chicago, Illinois, Dr. Lanka was the son of the late Florence and John Lanka and brother of the late James Lanka. He graduated from the University of Illinois College of Dentistry in 1961. Dr. Lanka practiced Oral OMS in Schenectady from 1966-1998. He was an attending Oral Surgeon at Ellis and the former St. Clare's Hospitals. He served as Chief of the Medical-Dental Staff of St. Clare's from 1988-1993. He served as the Director of the Department of Dentistry and Oral Surgery for many years as well as being an instructor in the General Practice Residency Program. He was inspired as he worked with the young Dental Residents until his last hospitalization in August 2017.
Survivors include his wife of 56 years, Lenore Lanka; two daughters, Kathleen Lanka of Galway and her two children, Sarah and Annelise Ostrowski; Karen Hedman and her husband, Chris of Boulder Colorado; two sons, John Lanka of Denver and his two children, Dylan and Isabelle; Dan Lanka of the Galway area, his wife Katrina and son Cody. Dr. Lanka felt blessed to have been surrounded by wonderful people all his life. His motto was "Do a little good each day" and "Be kind to everyone you meet."
A memorial service will be conducted on Saturday, February 3rd, 2018 at St. Mary's Church in Ballston Spa at 10 a.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Galway Public Library New Building Fund, PO Box 207, 5264 Sacandaga Road, Galway, NY 12074.