HomeNewsObituariesBill Thomas, Jr. passes at 81

Bill Thomas, Jr. passes at 81

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William “Bill” Thomas of Ft. Meyers, FL, formerly of Hopkinton, MA passed away surrounded by the love of his entire family both near and far at Joanne’s House a Bonita Springs, FL hospice home at the age of 81.

Bill, born on June 21,1942 was the son of the late Gladys (Berry) Thomas and William Thomas, Sr. and the brother of Patricia Jones currently of Sturbridge, MA. He also leaves behind the love of his entire life, his wife Betty (Irvine) Thomas of Ft. Meyer’s, FL. Married for nearly 63 years they were inseparable.

Bill grew up at 86 Main Street in Hopkinton, MA. He often reminisced and fondly talked about his childhood in Hopkinton where he spent time doing his paper route, going to dances with his love Betty, and having fun with friends and family. Bill went to Hopkinton High School and loved being part of the HHS Drama Club and often was the lead in the productions. He also loved playing football for Coach Ed Hayes who remarked that “I never had to worry about Bill Thomas who always did his job.” Upon graduation in 1960 from high school Bill decided to join the US Coast Guard, just like his father before him.

Soon after graduation, while just starting in the service, his childhood sweetheart could not wait any longer. Billy and Betty were married on August 27, 1961. They first lived in Rockland, ME where Bill was stationed and then Nantucket, MA for the remainder of his time in the Coast Guard. Bill was a proud Coast Guard veteran who put on his Coast Guard hat every single day to proudly hang his flag outside his home in Ft. Meyers.

A dedicated family man, Bill and Betty began their family in February 1963 with the birth of their daughter Nancy Lorraine, affectionately dubbed “Charlie” by her father Bill. Brian Edward “Sam” followed soon in May 1965. Their core family became complete with the birth of their youngest child, Karin LeAnne in May of 1971; Bill had run out of nickname ideas by the time Karin was born!

After his time in the Coast Guard, Bill continued to follow his father’s lead by becoming an electrician. He helped run and operate his family business, Electime, where he fixed clocks all while raising his family. Bill’s incredible work ethic and devotion to his family spurred him on to work numerous jobs to make life easier for his family. He loved his time bartending at Carbone’s while his wife waitressed. Bill also went on to work at General Motors in Framingham as an electrician and foreman. Once GM closed, he moved to Virginia and became a fire alarm specialist at the CIA building in McClean, VA.

Above all else, Bill was devoted to his family. His number one priority throughout his life was his undying love and devotion to his wife Betty, his children and grandchildren. His second love would be for his friends and honestly strangers alike because once you met Bill he was your friend. He loved jokes both clean and not so clean! He loved to make people laugh and even as his memory failed him he could still drop zingers, especially towards his love Betty.

Finally, Bill had a love affair with food! He especially loved the delicious food Betty always made for him, but Bill could and would eat anything you gave him, never complain and tell you it was delicious even if it was a PB&J (on white bread of course)!

Besides his wife Betty, Bill/Dad leaves behind his adoring sister-in-laws Susie Midgette and Patti Boelsen, his loving children Nancy Clark and her husband Brian of Park City, UT; Brian Thomas and his wife Pam of Sutton, MA; Karin DePaolo and her husband Stephen of Franklin, MA. “Grampie” also leaves behind his grandchildren, Tommy and his wife Katie, Tom and his wife Joey, Katie and her husband Bill, Rebecca and her fiancé Paul, Nicole, Ryan and Ethan. “Grampie” loved babies and leaves behind his first Great-Grandchild Max, as well as two more baby girls soon to arrive. As a direct result of his kind nature and tremendous humor he also leaves behind many more adoring friends and family.

A private memorial is being planned for a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Bill’s name to Joanne’s House, 27200 Imperial Parkway, Bonita Springs, FL 34135 or St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital.

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  1. Dear Thomas Family: So deeply sorry for your loss. The gentleman was truly loved and will be sorely missed by all who knew him!

  2. I am so sorry for your loss l remember both of you while working for Colella’s and your parents Bill did work on my house and was always so pleasant

  3. Bill and I grew up across the street from each other in Hopkinton. Always remember Bill and Betty as very nice people through junior high, when we went our separate ways. Sorry for the loss of an old friend. Gerry Gawalt


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