Tom Curry was created by Robert Bernstein and Lee Elias, and illustrated by Ramona Fradon.
Orinigally, according to the Silver Age continuity, Tom Curry was the biological father of Arthur Curry and husband of Atlanna, an Atlantean princess who was banished by her own people for her frequent visits to the surface world. He was a lighthouse keeper from Amnesty Bay, Maine who found Atlanna thrown on the shore by storm-tossed waves, and rescued her from harm. Both Curry and Atlanna made the lighthouse their home and developed a relationship that would lead to the birth of Arthur Curry. Tom Curry accepted his relationship, and though he always knew there was more to her than she would let on, he'd never asked about her origins. However, all of this became evident when he found Arthur playing underwater after he had apparently been there for several hours without drowning. Several years later, while she was on her deathbed, Atlanna revealed she was from a lost continent called Atlantis and Arthur would inherit her abilities to breathe underwater, as well as have the power to communicate with sea life. After Atlanna's death, Tom Curry became determined to train him physically and mentally so that one day he can be in complete control of his powers. He also taught Arthur to always view himself as someone special, as a savior of the oceans, as the King of the Seven Seas.
Tom Curry later married Mary O'Sullivan, an ordinary human and had a son named Orm. Orm, fully human, grew up a troubled child and was always getting bailed out by his half-brother, Arthur. Being in the shadow of his brother, Orm grew up to have lots of hatred towards Arthur not only for the powers he never could possess, but also because he thought that his father favored Arthur more. Orm eventually disappeared for some time and resurfaced years later as one of Aquaman's greatest adversaries known as Ocean Master.
However, after the universe was rebooted during the Crisis on Infinite Earths, Tom Curry's origins altered as he was no longer the biological father of Arthur but instead took him in as a son after finding him swimming near the lighthouse where he had operated at. He became his father and mentor; teaching him how to speak English and gave him the name Arthur Curry. One day after Arthur came back from a swim in the sea, his father was presumably dead because he never returned. Arthur returned to the oceans and ventured throughout the world, eventually growing up to be Aquaman, King of the Seven Seas.
Major Story Arcs
In Brightest Day, Tom Curry was depicted to be Aquaman's biological father who had served in the US Navy and later chose a life of seclusion as a lonely lighthouse keeper in Amnesty Bay (as shown for the first time during Blackest Night). Afterwards, Black Manta destroys his tombstone.
In the New 52, Tom Curry was depicted to be Aquaman's biological father as a lighthouse keeper who raises Arthur to be the man he is today, but only appears in flashbacks, photographs and hallucinations. He makes his first appearance in Aquaman #1 at night watching the seas with Arthur in Amnesty Bay. Arthur asks his father why he wanted to be a lighthouse keeper when he could be the captain of his own ship, and Tom replied that the captains needed someone on land to help watch the shores; and it's called responsibility. Later on, Tom Curry appears to be standing alone on the pier glaring at the sunrise while Arthur plays nearby, mourning over the thoughts of Atlanna, wishing she was there to see how much Arthur has grown. Arthur approaches his father asking him why does he stare at the pier during sunrise, and Tom replies that he wants to be there when his mother returns. Later it is revealed that Tom Curry had served on many different ship crews, piloted some boats and even guided some research vessels before becoming a lighthouse keeper.
Afterwards, we see Tom introduce Arthur to Dr. Stephen Shin, and allowed him to observe his son's capabilities. Over time, Shin tries to convince Tom to reveal Arthur's powers and origins but refused not to, taking all the evidence he had on Arthur. Allying with Black Manta, Shin attempts to retrieve some of Arthur's blood, having Black Manta to attack Arthur; but Tom, being the father he his jumps in to interfere. However he suffers a heart attack and dies three days later in the hospital. It was revealed he had been sick during that time period.
Powers and Abilities
Tom Curry possesses no metahuman powers, but was a skilled and very experienced captain and sailor for the US Navy.
Tom Curry was a trained sailor serving in the US Navy. In some continuities he serves as a drill sergeant for his son Aquaman.
He has been a captain of multiple ships.
Good Physical Condition
He was in very good shape, consistently taking part in operations in the ocean under extreme conditions.