Cover photo for Richard A. Thomas's Obituary
Richard A. Thomas Profile Photo

Richard A. Thomas

Mr. Richard A. Thomas, 71, was born on May 31, 1952, and entered eternal peace on May 31, 2023. He was born in Tampa, Florida, the second child of the late Henry J. and Josephine Thomas and stood proud of his mother’s Honduras heritage. Richard shared his birthday with big sister Pamela who he affectionately called “Pam,” and forever shared a special bond.

Richard was a 1972 Marion Franklin High School graduate in Columbus, Ohio, where he played football and ran the hurdles in track. He proudly served his country in the United States Navy on board the USS Richmond K. Turner and traveled the world and shared many stories of his journeys; he studied engineering at Columbus State Community College in Columbus, Ohio; was a member of the St. John AME Church under Pastor Jermaine D. Covington where he sang in the Men’s choir. From 1972 – 2018 Richard was a boiler operator, a trade he learned in the Navy, where he operated and repaired boilers until he retired from the Battel Memorial Institute. What many do not know, working at night also gave him time to read and write; he said, “The Ship Who Sang” and “The Stainless-Steel Rat” inspired him to come up with his own story and title character Raymond Hadada aka Hard Body was born. Richard authored and self-published four novels: Hard Body of Marcus, Hard Body 2, Breach Quarantine, and Hard Body on the Run 4. All available on Amazon, and he was mid-way through his fifth novel.

Richard was a man of faith, kind and thoughtful, who loved to share stories, jokes and bring laughter to others. He was a loving and devoted husband to the late Evangelist Brenda Joyce Thomas; he was a father, grandfather of four, and indeed the heart of his family, and to Angel and Jelly. He never met a stranger; every person was a friend to share a smile and laugh.

Richard is preceded in death by his parents, the late Henry J. and Josephine Thomas, sister Deborah Walton, and the love of his life, his wife, Brenda J. Thomas. Left to cherish his memory is loving daughter Pearleen Thomas, Son’s Anthony Thomas, Ernest, and Ivan Cummings; grandchildren Lafayette R. Westbrook III, Jayon Westbrook, Sarai Westbrook, and Gabriel Westbrook; cherished sister Pamela Trent; Nieces Sonja (Anthony) Rhynehardt (GA), Dominique Trent, Alicia Thigpin, Letisha Parks, Kaylin Gwynn, Nephews Cory King, Greggory (Denise) Trent, Tremain Trent, Pepe Gwynn, Derrick Nimmons, Rich Hill, Marshall Thigpen, Great-Nieces Leilani Rhynehardt (GA), LaShina (Eddie) Coley (GA), Lisa Brown (GA), Great-Nephews Elijah and Carter Easter (GA), Sister-in-Law Leilani Brown-Gwynn, Carol Moore, Brother-in-Law Michael Fair, Cousin Sheri Moore (Chesapeake, VA), Sergeant Major Adam Moore (VA), Jeff Thomas, Bruce Walker, Denise Wood, Trent Family, Bailey Family, Covington Family, Fields Family, Rhynehardt Family, Saunders Family, Seward Family, the Saints of St. John AME Church, and a host of many other family and friends.

Visitation 1:00 PM and Funeral Service 2:00 PM Saturday, June 17, 2023 at Tabernacle Baptist Church, 2188 Woodward Ave.

Interment Tuesday, June 20, 2023 at Dayton National Cemetery.

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