Obituary Jack Lark Thomas was born on July 16, 1925 in Marion Junction, Alabama. He was the fifth child of nine born to Willie Lark Thomas and Isabella Kate Underwood-Thomas. Jack’s foundation of Christianity was birthed at Mount Zion Baptist Church in Marion Junction, Alabama.
Jack was preceded in death by his parents Willie and Isabella Kate Thomas; his wife Geneva Lee Thomas; his mother in law Annie Mae Clincy; his daughter Janice Denise Thomas; his brothers James Thomas and Henry Thomas Sr.; his sisters Alice Thomas, Hattie Clay, Ora Lee Anderson and Emma Wilson, his brothers in law Willie Wilson, Robert Emerson, Jeffrey Fluker, and Ernest Clay; and his sisters in law Corine Thomas and Belvie Thomas.
Jack joined the Navy via enlistment in the early 1940s and served in the Pacific Theater during World War 2. Jack shared many stories of his time traveling across the “Blue and Salty” water that led him to Japan. After serving his country for “3 years, 6 months, and 14 days,” Jack returned stateside, headed north to Illinois and later met and married the love of his life Geneva Clincy on October 15, 1957. To this union, three children were born: Derrick Alonzo Thomas, Janice Denise Thomas, and Lisa Marie Thomas.
Prior to their births, Jack, affectionately known as “T99”, spent quality time with his nieces and nephews whom he viewed as his surrogate children, and conversely, whom they viewed as “Uncle Jack”. Upon his arrival in Illinois, Jack truly became a “Jack of all trades”; obtaining and excelling in a host of positions performing a diverse array of duties within each position that he held. He ultimately settled into his position in Environmental Services at Community Memorial General Hospital (current day Amita LaGrange Hospital) in La Grange, Illinois.
Jack faithfully labored in his role as an Environmental Services Specialist for over 35 years; retiring with the respect and admiration of generations of workers that worked alongside Jack and identified the unique attributes that truly made him a prince among men. Jack continued to fortify his relationship with God once he arrived in Illinois by becoming familiar with the churches in the La Grange community through visitation and fellowship; as he carefully pondered he and his family’s spiritual foundation. Jack became a member of Davis Memorial AME Church and faithfully served at Davis for over 50 years as an usher and trustee. Jack remained faithful and active as a doorkeeper in the house of his God until his health no longer allowed him to serve in the church. After that, Jack allowed the church that resided in him to keep that little light of his shining for decades more as he evangelized to countless others through song, exhortation, and example of what a man of God looks like even in the most challenging seasons.
Jack was indeed a Renaissance Man and had a plethora of talents. He was a dancer extraordinaire, an accomplished baseball player, had a knack for whipping up dishes in a pinch in the kitchen, enjoyed bowling, card playing, and horseracing, and was even a recording artist while in the Navy as part of a Gospel Navy Quartet, and a member of The Silver Tones traveling singing group. Jack was a gentleman in the truest sense of the word and allowed it to remain on display throughout all of the stations in his life.
Jack was lovingly and peacefully transitioned from labor home to reward at 1:15pm on Sunday, October 11th. He leaves behind to mourn his loss his children Reverend Derrick (Nurika)Thomas, Reverend Lisa Marie Thomas, Joseph Rashawn Thomas (spiritual son/nephew) of La Grange, IL , and Christopher (Melanie) Cungtion (Godson) of Peoria, IL; his Grandchildren Derrick Thomas II, Joshua Thomas and Kaleb Thomas of La Grange, IL, Michael Thomas and Stephen Thomas of Chicago, IL, Sisters, Bessie Mae Fluker and Josephine Emerson of La Grange, IL, Brother in law, Eleazar Anderson of La Grange, IL, and His cousins Lois Hilliard of Rocky Mount, NC and Joe (Corine) Thomas of La Grange, IL., and a host of other relatives and friends.
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