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William's Story

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William "Bill" Vernon Thomas, 99, of Traverse City, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, July 12, 2017 at French Manor South Assisted Living.
Bill was born on Feb. 27, 1918 in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, to the late William and Jean (McClement) Thomas. He married the love of his life, Ruth Ann LaCross, on Oct. 5, 1939 in Wyandotte.
Bill was employed by Detroit Edison as an engineer. He retired in 1978 as plant superintendent. He was proud that he and his team played a crucial role during World War II by supplying power to the plants that produced tanks and planes for the war effort.
Bill moved to Traverse City in 1982. He was a member of First Congregational Church.
He was independent, hardworking and highly skilled at many trades. He and Ruth were very involved in the construction of their family home on Old Mission Peninsula. They spent many of their winters in Harlingen, Texas. He loved ballroom dancing and traveling the United States with his wife.
William is survived by his loving wife of 77 years, Ruth; two sons and a daughter, Bill (Eula) Thomas, Ellen Thomas and James (Char) Thomas. Also surviving are three grandchildren, Sean, Danielle and Signe.
William was preceded in death by two brothers, Lloyd Thomas and Warren Thomas; as well as a sister, Berva Coatsworth.
In accordance with William's wishes, interment has taken place in the Garden of Remembrance at the First Congregational Church.
Bill's family appreciates the years of care and kindness of Dr. Gary Hogue.
Those planning an expression of sympathy may wish to consider a memorial donation to the First Congregational Church, 6105 Center Road, Traverse City, MI 49686.
Please feel free to share your thoughts and memories with Bill's family at www.reynolds-jonkhoff.com.
The family is being cared for by the Reynolds-Jonkhoff Funeral Home and Cremation Services.
Published on July 16, 2017
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