Thomas Tiger Rafter

Thomas Tiger Rafter, 50, of Uniontown, passed away peacefully Tuesday, December 12, 2023, in UPMC Shadyside Hospital with his loving family by his side.
The youngest of eight children, Tiger was born May 26, 1973, in Connellsville, to the late Constance L. (Harford) Miller and Thomas Rafter.
A 1991 graduate of Uniontown Area High School, he later studied theology through the University of Notre Dame and discovered his true passion.
After working many years in the catering and food service industry, Tiger answered the call to serve the Lord as a Benedictine monk with the Reformed Episcopal Church. He was a member of the Franciscan Missionaries of the Holy Cross and served in parish ministries in Mountain Home, Ark.; Dayton, Ohio; and Fairview Heights, Ill. Upon taking his simple vows, he chose the monastic name “Antony.”
He last served at St. Benedict’s Abbey in Bartonville, Ill., before health issues brought him home to Pennsylvania, where he became a faithful parishioner of St. Peter’s Anglican Church of Uniontown. Tiger believed serving God was not a job, but his whole life.
Despite struggling most of his life with osteopoikilosis and multiple sclerosis, which caused him great pain, Tiger remained positive, happy and unbelievably kind. Throughout his courageous cancer battle, which ultimately took his life, his gentle demeanor and love for others shined through. Even in his final days, his bright spirit touched the hearts of many doctors and nurses, as it had countless others over the years.
His sharp wit and one-of-a-kind sense of humor made him a favorite uncle – or “Monkle” – of his dozens of nieces and nephews. Tiger had a vast knowledge of many subjects, music and movies. He was the person you called when you needed the answer to a trivia question, a bit of sage wisdom, or, simply, a listening ear and open heart. He was an animal lover; avid fan of all sports, but especially Pittsburgh Penguins hockey or Notre Dame Fighting Irish football; and was fiercely proud of his Irish and Scottish heritages. Most of all, Tiger loved spending time and playing cards with his family, even when they were too loud for his soft-spoken personality.
In addition to his parents, Tiger was preceded in death by his sisters, Laurie Fowler of Derby, Kan., and Valerie Emerson of China Grove, N.C.; nephew, Tyler Miller; and beloved chihuahuas, Guido and Amigo.
Left to cherish his memory are his siblings, Dennis Miller of Wichita, Kan., Linda (Joseph) Bartolovich of Davenport, Fla., Rick (Donna) Miller of Destin, Fla., Patty (Bill) Harper of Waltersburg, Pa., and Dan Miller of Washington, Pa.; brothers-in-law, Robert Fowler of Derby, Kan. and Hal Emerson of China Grove, N.C.; nieces, Leanne (Eric) Lisco, Steffany (Greg) Hagler, Jennifer (Jay) Simpson, Ashley (Josh) Null, Kaylie (Nicole) Glaze and Madelyn Miller; nephews, John (Stacey) Fowler, Ben (Laura) Miller, Eric Miller, Patrick (Keri) Miller, Bradley Perkins, Zack Miller and Matt (Sara) Stanec; and many great-nieces and great-nephews.
A memorial service will be held at noon Saturday, Dec. 16, 2023, at St. Peter’s Anglican Church, 60 Morgantown St., Uniontown, Pa., with Rev. Aaron G. Prosser presiding. A visitation with family and friends to celebrate Tiger’s life will follow from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday, at the Andrew. D. Ferguson Funeral Home & Crematories, 80 Morgantown St., Uniontown, Pa., to which arrangements have been entrusted. Inurnment will be private.

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