Study: Layne Tom, Jr. (LT003)

Los Angeles Times (reformatted), February 10, 2015


June 29, 1927 – January 14, 2014 

Richard Layne Tom of Huntington Beach passed away peacefully in his home on January 14, 2015.  He is survived by his wife Marilynn of 63 years and his daughters Laurie Yee and Kiana Tom-Breshears (Dennis), grandchildren Steven Yee, Anelalani and Kiana Kai.  He served in the Navy on the West Virginia, graduated from USC in architecture and had his practice for 30 years.  He was President of the Orange County Chapter of A.I.A., Chinese American Architects and Engineers and Rotary.  Richard was also a Planning Commissioner for the City of Huntington Beach.  He was instrumental with Governor Jerry Brown in establishing recognition of Chinese architects and engineers.  He designed the flagship Bank of America in Los Angeles Chinatown, numerous fire stations, banks, courthouses, libraries, shopping centers, civic centers and his own home in Huntington Harbour.  As a child star in the Charlie Chan series, as sons 13, 8 and 5, Layne was the only son to claim the distinction of working with both Sydney Toler and Warner Oland.  

He also worked in several movies including “The Hurricane” with Dorothy Lamour, Mary Astor and Raymond Massey, “Lady of the Tropics” with Hedy Lamarr, “Adventures in Paradise” and “Hawaiian Eye.”  Layne also played in movies with Shirley Temple and Jimmy Stewart and performed at the Orpheum theatre in Los Angeles.  He is a lifetime member of the Girl Scouts and served on their Board.  The highlight of his philanthropic support was with Rotary International where he represented them at the International Convention in South America.  In 1983, he was recognized as Paul Harris Fellow.  He loved playing tennis, traveling to Hawaii with his family and gambling in Las Vegas and local casinos.  His tenor voice and sense of humor was enjoyed by many.  Private service.

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