Cover photo for William B. "Bill" Thomas's Obituary
William B. "Bill" Thomas Profile Photo
1929 Bill 2024

William B. "Bill" Thomas

January 12, 1929 — May 16, 2024

College Station, TX

The earthly time allotted for William B. "Bill" Thomas was completed on May 16, 2024. The Celebration of Life is at St. Francis Episcopal Church, 1101 Rock Prairie Road, College Station, Saturday, June 29, 2024, at 1:00 PM. Bill had asked, that services be joyous. The Reverend Mary Lenn Dixon, Officiant, The Reverend Lacy Largent, Priest. A reception follows. Afterwords, family and friends to gather as his cremains are committed and scattered in the oak tree grove at St. Francis. Bill would wish that rather than flowers, memorials be made to a community agency or church.

Bill was born in Everett, Washington January 12,1929 the son of Bruce and Elizabeth Thomas. His early education was in Washington and California. He graduated from Glendale High School and Glendale Community College and attended UCLA. During his school and college years he had among jobs: paper route, golf caddy, soda-jerk, waiter, warehouse man, assembly line worker and ranch hand. Bill and his high-school sweetheart Barbara Braack were married in 1950 and blessed with five children.

Bill was employed by Lock heed Aircraft for 33 years, from 1951 to 1984. Shortly after his hire he was selected for a four-year, 8,320 hour, indentured apprenticeship. Bill became a journeyman CAA/FAA "A License" Engineering Flight Test Mechanic on prototype and test aircraft. He continued studies at UCLA at night and was promoted as staff in Lockheed's Human Recourses organization. Bill held a progressive series of staff, supervisory and management assignments in California, Texas, and Greece. His responsibilities included employment, compensation, EEO compliance, company-union relations, and government contracts. Bill was a member of the Lockheed management team that established the Greek company, Hellenic Aircraft Industries. At age 55 he took an early retirement to live and travel in Europe.

In 1985 Bill returned to the US and made College Station his home. He soon began a second career in non-profit agency management. For 20 years Bill served as the Executive Director of four community agencies: Junction 505, 1987-1989; American Red Cross, 1990-1998; Brazos Valley Food Bank, 1999-2005 and Dispute Resolution Center, 2005-2007. Bill applied private sector management principals to the operation of non-profits. He became noted for rebuilding troubled and failing agencies. He led two major capital campaigns: for the construction of the American Red Cross Chapter-house on H/W146-Boonville Road and the purchase of the Brazos Valley Food Bank Distribution Center in the Bryan Industrial Park.

Bill finally retired at age 78 in 2007. He continued in community activities as a volunteer with Red Cross Disaster Services and at the George Bush Presidential Library. He was appointed as a Brazos County Elections Judge and served on civil commissions and community boards. Over the years Bill continued his learning at UCLA, University of Houston and Blinn College. He attained a lifetime 135 semester hours. Bill made many return visits to Greece, often as guest of friends at their holiday home on the island of Chios.

He was a member of St. Francis Episcopal Church in College Station beginning in 1985. Bill served in lay ministries including Licensed Worship Leader, Licensed Eucharistic Minister and twice as member of the Bishop's Committee and Bishop's Warden. As the last Bishop's Warden, he was prominent in the elevation of St. Francis from Mission to Parish.

Bill was preceded in death by his parents, daughter Katherine Duval and son Mark Thomas. Survivors are three children, sons James of Tyler, Dean and wife Hulda of League City, a daughter Jane Gray of Dickinson, eleven grandchildren, fifteen great-grandchildren and one great-great grandchild. Also surviving is his sister Susan and husband Robert Hammond of Riverside, California and longtime friend Litsa Sarri of Athens, Greece. Bill leaves an extended family of friends at St. Francis Episcopal Church.

To order memorial trees in memory of William B. "Bill" Thomas, please visit our tree store.

Service Schedule

Upcoming Services

Celebration of Life

Saturday, June 29, 2024

1:00 - 2:00 pm (Central time)

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