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Gerald L. Thomas (aka Jerry or J.T.), 83, Independence, Kansas passed away peacefully at home on Wednesday, April 12, 2017. Cremation has taken place and a Celebration of Gerald's Life will be at 1:00 p.m. Monday, May 8, 2017 at Church of the Epiphany, 400 East Maple Street, Independence, Kansas 67301, with Reverend Kathi Babcock Officiating. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to AWOL, 116 South 23rd Street, Independence, Kansas 67301 or Church of the Epiphany, 400 East Maple Street, Independence, Kansas 67301.
Gerald was born December 15, 1933, in Independence, Kansas to Gerald L. and Mary Irene (St. Helens) Thomas. Gerald graduated from Independence High School. He then served in the United States Army during the Korean War. After his honorable discharge from the Army, Gerald attended the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kansas where he received his undergraduate degrees in Journalism, Anthropology, and Psychology. After living in New York working as a journalist for a time, he moved to Eugene, Oregon. He obtained a Master's degree in Psychology and performed pre-Doctoral work at the University of Oregon. Gerald was one of the original founders of White Bird Clinic in Eugene, Oregon in 1969. He specialized as a substance abuse counselor. When not at White Bird Clinic he worked at Chrysalis Clinic and various agencies. After Gerald retired he moved back to his home town of Independence, Kansas. Throughout his life, Gerald enjoyed reading and lively discussion, listening to classical and jazz music, camping, fishing, and living in the wild, playing cards and pool, and Midwest style home cooking.
Gerald was preceded in death by his parents; one son, Christopher Lynn Thomas; one brother, Robert L. Thomas; and one sister, Phyllis J. Romine. Survivors include: one daughter, Lisa ( John) Richard, Independence, Kansas; one sister, Mary Kathleen Babcock, Independence, Kansas; six nieces and nephews, Robert J. (Fawn) Romine, Montgomery, Alabama; Christopher L. (Patricia) Romine, Independence, Kansas; Steven G. (Kathy) Thomas, Huntsville, Alabama; Sue (Greg) Hamilton, Ontario, Canada; Marsha Morris, Birmingham, Alabama; and Cynthia Thomas, Independence, Kansas.
To leave a special message for the family please visit www.webbrodrickfuneralhome.com
Services have been entrusted to the care of Webb & Rodrick Chapel and Crematory.
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