Ronald Edward Thomas

A celebration of life for Ronald Edward Thomas, 69, Lawrence, will be held on July 10, 2021, at 2pm at The Billiards Studio, 745 New Hampshire in Lawrence.

Mr. Thomas passed away Monday, June 14, 2021, at his home.

Ron was a man of many talents, had an insatiable thirst for knowledge, and was like no other!  When he decided to try something new, he immersed himself in it.  He was an excellent player of chess, bridge, spades and dominos, and played on bowling and volleyball teams when he was younger.  He was always a fabulous pool player, and most recently he joined The Billiards Studio where he won their first annual Billiard’s Tournament.  He was an avid reader, fluent in Spanish; loved Science, but also science fiction.  He was a longtime comic book collector, but X-men were his favorite; he collected decorative masks; and he loved plants.   He also had an artistic side throwing pottery, and even delved into making jewelry.  Ron loved to cook and bake.

He worked in the aircraft industry for 10 years before he decided to get his degree.  He graduated from WSU with a Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies.  His major emphasis of study was Spanish with minors in Economics, Communications, and History.  He also was an Emory Lindquist Honors Program Graduate and Class Representative.  He got his MBA from Baker University.  He loved working with people and providing every opportunity for them to better themselves.  This led him to an education career with Goodwill, Manufactures Technical Institutes and Pinnacle Career Institute.  Even after retirement, he became a substitute teacher in Lawrence, Olathe, and Eudora. Ron loved people, never met a stranger, and he had kind words for everyone he met.   He is best described as a “fun loving, non-conforming intellectual”.  He could discuss and debate many topics.  But, most of all he placed great value on his freedom to live his life the way he chose. Ron had an infectious smile and “oh, those dimples”!   He loved his daughter, Valerie, more than anything else in life.  Life threw many obstacles at him over the years, but he overcame them all, always with a positive, optimistic attitude.   His life was unexpectedly cut short, and he will be sorely missed by all who knew him.

He is survived by his daughter, Valerie Thomas, his mother, Mary Thomas, 4 brothers, 6 sisters, and a multitude of nieces and nephews.