James “Jim” Harvey Thomas, 84, of Atlantic, Iowa, passed away Thursday, January 4, 2018, at the Cass County Memorial Hospital.
James was born November 1, 1933, to Harry and Hazel (Lavelleur) Thomas in Colfax, Iowa. Jim attended school in Colfax through the tenth grade at which time he left school to help on the family farm. He later joined the United States Army serving during the Korean Conflict from April 1, 1952, to March 31, 1955.
After returning home from the military, Jim worked in Des Moines at a gas station and later owned his own gas station. At that time Jim was united in marriage to Nancy Gregg. To that union, two sons were born, Gregory and Rodney. In 1965, Jim moved to Oakland, Iowa, and was united in marriage to Kathy Lead. To this union his daughter, Kerri Thomas, was born. While in Oakland, he worked at Oakland Feed Lots and Oakland beef plant.
In 1981, Jim moved to Atlantic and went to work for Glacier Vandervall. In 1991, Jim was united in marriage to Gladys Wester. He retired in 1997 from Glacier Vandervall and began working part time for the Atlantic airport and the Atlantic Park and Recreation Department.
Jim liked to tell jokes and was an overall jokester. He was a huge Iowa Hawkeye fan and also liked the California Raisins and had a huge collection of items of them both. During his retirement years, he enjoyed helping a friend work on and rebuild airplanes at the Atlantic Airport. Jim enjoyed the outdoors and always found it to be relaxing and pleasing to operate riding lawnmowers, which meant his job mowing grass for the city was not much of a job. Jim and Gladys enjoyed camping and were camp hosts at the Anita campground for a few years. They also appreciated their time with the Sunday breakfast club.
Jim was preceded in death by his parents, Harry and Hazel Thomas, his parents-in-law, Robert and Rosie Dietz; step-son, Rodney Wester; step-granddaughter, Ashley Ann Fay; step-grandson, Brian Eric Claussen; sisters, Helen Russell, Fay Smith, Maxine Carroll, Lucille Yoakum, Dorothy Riley and June Nickolish; brother, Richard Thomas; brothers-in-law, Printess Russell, Merle Smith, Ron Carroll, Paul Yoakum, Rudy Nickolish and Clarence Riley.
Jim is survived by his wife, Gladys Thomas; sons, Rodney Thomas, Gregory (Marsha) Thomas; his daughter, Kerri (Jayson) Waller, step-daughters, Linda (Brett) Fay and Brenda Buboltz; grandsons, Jake Thomas and Trenton Waller, granddaughter, Hailey Waller, step-grandsons, Bradly Claussen, Josh Larsen and Steven Fay; step-granddaughter, Jennifer Claussen; eleven step-great-grandchildren; sister-in-law, Mary Christensen, other relatives and many friends.
Visitation with family will be from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m., with a memorial service starting at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, January 10, 2018, at Hockenberry Family Care in Atlantic, Iowa.
Burial will be in the Oakwood Cemetery in Lewis, Iowa.
Hockenberry Family Care in Atlantic, Iowa, is in charge of the arrangements.