Driving Transactions
Sunday, April 21, 2024
MemoriamThomas Zachary IV

Thomas “Tom” Zachary IV, a longtime sales representative for manufacturer Executive Coach Builders, passed away on March 16 after a battle with cancer. He was 60.

Tom was born and raised in the Philadelphia suburbs, graduating from Lower Marion High School in Ardmore. According to his family, he had an affinity for “anything with wheels,” which dominated the trajectory of his career and led him to the chauffeured transportation community.

He began his automotive career closer to home at the popular Wilkie family of dealerships, located in the Philly area. However, he’s best known for selling larger vehicles as part of the sales team at Missouri-based Executive Coach Builders. He joined the company more than two decades ago and spearheaded the manufacturer’s New Jersey-based facility, Executive Coach East, as general manager and sales manager.

Executive Coach Builders President David Bakare remembers Tom as a special talent, a gentle man among gentlemen.

“He was more of a brother than an employee,” says Bakare. “He would always say, ‘We’ll work it out, there’s never a bad deal.’ His optimism was contagious and soon enough you believe it’s going to work out.”

Bakare says that Tom was a fiercely private person, and he only learned of the seriousness of his health struggles shortly before he passed.

“I think he strongly believed that he was going to beat this,” says Bakare of Tom’s famous optimism. “He handled it well to the end.”

Known for being humble, quick to help, and chronically optimistic, he built many enduring relationships throughout the industry over the years, often becoming good friends with his clients and colleagues.

In fact, it was through his job at Executive Coach East that he first interacted with his future bride and life partner, Lisa. With offices located across the street from each other, the casual conversations soon blossomed into a romance, and they married in 2017. For several years prior to the pandemic, Lisa—an accomplished leader in her own right—assisted her husband at the Executive Coach facility, including lending her talents to marketing.

Although he did not have children of his own, Lisa says that he was a loving presence for her three children, Marriah, Christopher, and Alisa Hannah.

“The word that comes to mind when I think of him is ‘loyal.’ He was loyal to his limo industry family, he was loyal to his loved ones and friends, he was our anchor,” says Lisa about her husband of seven years. “There’s nothing that he wouldn’t do for us or the people he loved. I find comfort in knowing that he is at peace.”

Tom was also a man of faith as a member of his local church, Change Church. While he and Lisa fought cancer privately—as was his wish—she says he did find comfort and strength in his spirituality and through prayer with his fellow congregants. According to his family, he was active in the church community and served as an assistant leader for one of the church’s groups.

Tom was laid to rest on March 22 following a celebration of life with his Change Church family. In addition to his wife, Lisa, and stepchildren, he is survived by sister Carol Zachary Smith (Jeffrey); nephew Ahmad Zachary; two nieces, Aliyah Zachary and Jordan Smith; and grand-niece Kodilei Zachary Atwell.