Tom Lane III was born and raised in Toledo, Ohio, to parents Evelyn Lane and Tom Lane, Jr. Evelyn Lane was a nurse for 45 years at Toledo Hospital while his father Tom Jr. was a civil engineer at Owens Corning Fiberglass. His parents set an example of a strong work ethic very early on in Tom's life that set a foundation for the future of his own career.
Growing up, Tom saw first-hand from his parents what it meant to work. There were days when his parents would go in early or stay in late, worked weekend shifts, and even sometimes holidays. However, Tom learned a valuable lesson from witnessing his parents dedication to their jobs that he will never forget. In life, going the extra mile can help you to reach your dream destination.
Introduced to the field of sports medicine by Regina Motley, who had treated him for an athletic injury after high school, Tom soon realized that sports medicine could be an occupation he could see himself pursuing. Talking to Regina as he received treatment, Tom started to set himself on the career path of an athletic trainer. Enrolling at Bowling Green State University, Lane worked in the athletic department and even as a student athletic director on campus for a year. During his time at BGSU, Lane also did a summer internship called IMG Academy where he met Dorri Buchholtz. Buchholtz taught Tom how to work with and kids and especially how to talk to them rather than over them. Another great influence in Tom's life was Dr. Gary Schniegenburg, his first team physician and close friend. Schniegenburg taught him not only to take care of his athletes, but at the end of the day you need to take care of yourself. Last but not least is colleague Robb Williams, whom Tom had worked with for five years at St. Rita's Medical Hospital. Robb had been the head athletic trainer at multiple Division I universities and was Tom's connection to some of the major players in the athletic trainer profession. Lane took all of his colleague's advice to heart and found his experiences with them to be priceless.
Introduced to DSJ in 1996, trainer Tom received a letter from St. Rita's in regards to the request of a licensed athletic director for the school Delphos Saint John's. Assuming Delphos St. John's was like his school Toledo's St. John's, an all-boys Catholic school, Tom was in for a surprise! As of this year, Trainer Tom as been our school's Licensed Athletic Trainer for 24 years and counting.
"The tradition, not only in athletics, but school and community, is amazing." Tom is truly proud to be a part of our blue jay family, helping our athletes with broken wings fly back on the court or field. Lane states that our students are: "the best I've ever treated in and out of the training room." Trainer Tom has also had the opportunity at St. John's to meet some other terrific professionals, one of them being Dr. Jason Hageman, a DSJ grad that Lane met when Jason was in the 8th grade. Today Dr. Hageman is a Sports Medicine Medical Director at Mercy Health St. Rita's. At the end of the day, Tom's goal is to be more knowledgeable in his field to better educate athletes and school's of his occupation as well as the importance of having access to an athletic trainer.
I know from a personal experience in sports, Tom helped me tremendously by working with me throughout the week after school. Teaching me new stretches, giving me personalized tests to see my improvements, and by simply checking up on me. Trainer Tom truly had one-on-one conversations with me and he treated me as a friend rather than a patient. To this day, I still sometimes stop by his office to say hi, talk, and crack a few jokes in between. During the fall season, I pulled a tendon in my ankle sophomore year of soccer. Along with that, during my junior year, I got a concussion outside of school sports. With each visit I could tell I was making progress, and Trainer Tom gave me the reassurance I needed when I was worried about my condition.
When Tom was informed that he had been inducted into the St. John's Hall of Fame, Tom laughed, thinking it was all one big joke. At hearing that he was awarded the Service to St. John's award, he was utterly speechless. "To hear that after all the sacrifices I've made over the last 20 years is very gratifying, and there have been many sacrifices made, but in the end, I hope it was worth it."
In 2019, Tom was awarded the National Athletic Trainers' Association Athletic Trainer Service Award in Las Vegas, Nevada. His sister Sarah and her fiance Joe live in Toledo. He also has a niece named Mona and a nephew named Anthony.
(Article written by NIcole Pohlman)