Herschel Otto Thomas, 88, of Breese, Ill., formerly of Centralia, Ill., born Nov. 21, 1925, in Centralia, Ill., passed away at 5:38 a.m. Thursday, April 10, 2014, at Memorial Hospital in Belleville, Ill.
Mr. Thomas worked as clerk for the Illinois Central Railroad retiring after 43 years. He was a lifelong area resident. He was member of VFW Post 2055 and American Legion Post 446. He was member of the Centralia Masonic Lodge 201 AF & AM. He was also very active in many Masonic orders, and was past grand commander of the Knights Templar.
Herschel served in the U.S. Army as a sergeant during World War II from 1944 to 1945.
He was preceded in death by his son, Terry Ray Thomas; parents, Otto and Edna C., nee Breuer, Thomas; brother, Otto Thomas Jr.; and stillborn daughter, Ellen Marie Thomas.
Surviving are his wife, Betty L., nee Walker, Thomas, whom he married on Nov. 17, 1946, in Centralia, Ill.; son, Gregory Allen Thomas and wife Rhonda of Centralia, Ill.; two daughters, Lizabeth Wade and husband Randy of Breese and Sandra Kay Bryan and husband Tom of Walnut Hill, Ill.; seven grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; a great-great-grandchild; several step-grandchildren and step-great-grandchildren.
For those who wish, memorials may be made to Masonic Charities, and will be accepted at the Irvin Funeral Home in Centralia, who is in charge of arrangements. To leave an online condolence for the family please visit irvinfuneralhome.com.
Visitation: Friends may call from 5 to 7 p.m. Sunday, April 13, 2014, at Irvin Funeral Home in Centralia, Ill.
Funeral: Funeral service will be held at 12:01 p.m. Monday, April 14, 2014, at Irvin Funeral Home in Centralia. Interment will follow in the Hillcrest Memorial Park. Military Rites will be accorded by American Legion Post 446 and VFW Post 2055.
IRVIN FUNERAL HOME, Centralia, Ill.
Irvin Funeral Home Ltd
234 S Elm St Centralia, IL 62801
Published in Belleville News-Democrat on Apr. 11, 2014