"Do you know how many snakes we have here in Texas, how many different species? Sixty-four," he said.
His fascination with the limbless reptiles began when he was a junior in college. He came home one weekend for the first Sweetwater Rattlesnake Round Up. He worked there as a ticket taker with the Sweetwater Jaycees.
That was in 1954. And it hasn't changed much since then.
"We've got king snakes, milk snakes," Tom explained.
And that's just to name a few.
"We have seventeen non-poisonous snakes," he went on to say. "All of them are. I don't' have any rattle snakes anymore."
Tom and his wife, June, keep all 17 of those snakes in the house along with a few bearded dragons, a tortoise named bob and other pets. And all of the critters are from the Lone Star State. Some were caught, others from pet shops. And even a few have been rescued.
"We've had several small ones that we've bought from her that were going to die," said Tom. "And we've saved two out of the three."
And he's even scared off a few visitors with his snakes.
"I had a plumber come in here one time, and he wasn't used to me. But he went nuts; he thought I had a coral snake. And he told me I was crazy. And I said, 'It's not a coral snake,' I said, 'It's a milk snake.' And that's the cheapest plumbing bill I ever had."
Tom has had many adventures while snake hunting, which includes being featured on National Geographic. But for him, it's nothing more than just a very unique hobby.