Thomas Bynum Jr., 85, peacefully transitioned from this life into eternal rest on June 18, 2020 at his residence surrounded by loved ones. A private service will be held in Greensboro, NC on Friday, June 26, 2020. The interment will follow at Forest Lawn Cemetery. He will lie in repose for public viewing at Hanes Lineberry North Elm Chapel from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Thursday, June 25, 2020. Thomas ("Tommy") Bynum Jr. was born on April 19, 1935 to the late Thomas Bynum Sr. and the late Mary Massey Bynum in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Tommy attended Chapel Hill public schools and furthered his formal education at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University (A&T) where he obtained an undergraduate degree and a master's degree in sports medicine. While at North Carolina A&T, Tommy, a phenomenal student-athlete, played on the university's basketball team during the full tenure of his academic career. Following his undergraduate studies, he served in the United States Army and continued to play basketball while stationed in Germany. Upon his return home and after completing his graduate studies, Tommy briefly worked at Moses Cone Hospital in the Histology/Cytology department. In 1968, Tommy pursued his dream and began his career at North Carolina A&T, where he remained as an athletic trainer until his retirement in 2000. Tommy, affectionately known as "Mr. B," was a highly-respected professional who was devoted to maintaining the health of each one of the thousands of student athletes in his care. In 1971, he participated in the Pan-African Games, where he served as an athletic trainer for the US Olympic Committee, working with promising, high-caliber Olympic athletes. In 1973, he was selected by the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) to be a trainer in Germany, Africa and Russia. Additionally in 1973, he was a trainer for the USA National Junior Track and Field team. Two years later he served as a sports festival trainer, as he made stops in Venezuela, Africa, France, China, Poland, Germany and Russia. He also served as an assistant trainer in the Republic of China for the AAU Meet in 1975 and AAU head trainer in 1976 in Russia, West Germany, and Canada. Of the 500 potential trainers screened by the U.S. Olympic Committee Sports Medicine Division, Tommy was one of 24 selected to work the Summer Olympic Games in 1984 and was named to the Olympic Training Advisory Board. He was later chosen to be a trainer for the Summer Olympics of 1996 in Atlanta, Georgia. In 2000, Tommy was inducted into North Carolina A&T's Sports Hall of Fame where the Thomas "Mr. B" Sports Medicine Room in the Corbett Sports Center was named and dedicated in his honor in 2005. His legacy, as depicted in the quote below, will forever be a part of North Carolina A&T. To hear and see how many former student athletes adored him, it is easy to understand why we have such a family atmosphere at North Carolina A&T, today. "'Mr. B' laid the foundation for taking care of the student-athlete. He left a legacy not only on athletics but the university at large. It cannot be said enough, 'Mr. B' is an Aggie legend." --NCA&T Director of Athletics, Earl M. Hilton, III. Aside from his life as an athletic trainer, Tommy was a member of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. and was certainly a proud "Alpha Man." Well-rounded and well-respected, he also passionately engaged in community activism. In the 1960s, Tommy, along with his wife, mother-in-law and other family members, was instrumental in assisting and supporting the civil rights demonstrations by housing national civil rights leaders, students, and other activists in their home. Tommy was preceded in death by his parents, Thomas Bynum Sr. and Mary Massey Bynum, and his younger sister, Sue Bynum, who passed away as a child. Left to cherish memories of him is his loving wife of 59 years, Yvonne Bynum; their daughter, Nicole Bynum-Applegarth (Tammey); first cousin, Larry Edwards (Josephine); sister-in-law Anthanette Clark (Joseph); sister-in-law Patricia Thomas; nieces and nephews; very special "play" children and grandchildren; and a host of Aggies that were influenced by his undying dedication to the North Carolina A&T family. Online condolences may be shared by visiting www.haneslineberryfhnorthelm.com.
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