Our beloved, Thanh Vo, passed peacefully on March 16, 2023.
Thanh was born on May 18, 1969 as the seventh of ten children in Hue, Vietnam. At the age of 12, with his brothers and sister, he escaped by boat, braving the open seas. He and his family survived the heroic journey and arrived in Hong Kong weeks later. A year later, he relocated with his some of his siblings to Hickory, North Carolina. In an unfamiliar place without much family, they built a community through soccer.
Thanh was a star-athlete. He set records, including Hickory High’s “Player of The Year” in 1987 and the most goals in 3 seasons for Hickory High, a record that still stands today. He scored 125 goals and 104 assists for Hickory High’s soccer team from 1983-1986. At the time of his passing, he maintains the 12th rank for “Most Assists” nationwide according to the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS). A select few other accolades he has been awarded include “Most Valuable Player”, “2nd Team All-State” 1987-1988, and “2nd Team All-State” 1986.
Thanh attended East Carolina State University and graduated with a B.S. in Industrial Engineering. He is a proud purple pirate and has had a successful career as a mechanical engineer. He was even granted a patent award as part of his work for GE in 2002.
Thanh drove a 1987 phoenix-red Honda Prelude six hours to meet a girl that his family described as perfect for him. Tien Tran was skeptical at first upon meeting the stranger welcomed into her home by her own family, but Thanh’s charms and perseverance eventually won her over. After two years of long-distance dating, they married on October 14, 1995. They welcomed a daughter, Emily Vo, in April 1999 and a son, John Vo, in January 2002.
Thanh’s love for sports extended beyond soccer. He continued his dedication to soccer, but also became an incredible tennis and pickleball player. He enjoyed swimming, basketball, football, and there was not a single sport that Thanh did not dabble in once in his extraordinary life. Thanh was a big fan of the Tennessee Titans, the Seattle Seahawks, and was often wearing UTK orange or UW purple to represent how proud he was of his children.
The only thing Thanh loved more than sports was his family. His eyes would light up when speaking about his children and wonderful wife. They were his world, and he was theirs.
Thanh loved working with his 3D printer embellishing the names of his wife and children in the items he made, spending time with his family no matter the activity, going on dates with his wife, watching football with his son, and being in the company of his daughter. He often sent photos in their family group chat and reignited the conversation when there was a lull due to his children being in other cities.
Thanh was a pillar to the community. He dedicated his time to those in need and volunteered with the Buddhist temple. Thanh enjoyed organizing dragon dances and arranging Vietnamese events at the temple.
Thanh lives on through his wife, Tien, and his two incomparable children, Emily and John.
The celebration of Thanh’s life will be held on March 25th, 2023 starting at 9:00am at West Harpeth Funeral Home (6962 Charlotte Pike Nashville, TN 37209).
To send flowers
to the family or plant a tree
in memory of Thanh Vo, please visit our floral store.