Perry Samuel Thomas

Perry Samuel Thomas

Perry Samuel Thomas, aged 88 of Seattle, passed away December 12, 2012 after a long illness. Perry Thomas was born on December 27th, 1923 in Denver, Colorado to the late Perry & Jesse Lee Loggin Thomas. He was the first of ten children including Chester Thomas, Stella Mae (Thomas) Robbins, Helen Thomas, Barbara (Thomas) Smith, Patricia (Thomas) Smoots, Jeanette (Thomas) Robinson, William Thomas, Geraldine (Thomas) Kennedy & Robert Thomas.

Perry was reared and educated in Denver where his family attended Zion Baptist Church and he graduated from Manual High School. He enlisted in the Army in 1942. In 1943 he was selected for the US Army Air Corp training program for African American pilot candidates at Tuskegee, Alabama where he successfully completed flight training as a member of class 45-I. He graduated from the University of Denver in 1949 receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering. In 1950 he met Harriette Bass and they were joined in Holy Wedlock on February 4, 1951. They moved to Seattle in 1952 when Perry was hired as an electrical engineer by the Boeing Company and where they raised two children Lee Michael Thomas and Lynne Michelle (Thomas) Binion. He worked as an Aerospace engineer & manager on a variety of programs at Boeing including SRAM, Minuteman & AWACS/E3A until his retirement in 1989. He was a member of a number of Fraternal and Professional organizations including Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Prince Hall Masons (Seattle) and the Sam Bruce Chapter of Tuskegee Airman International. As one of the original Tuskegee Airman, Perry was presented with the Congressional Gold Medal of Honor in 2007.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 58 years, Harriette Thomas, his brother Chester and his sisters Stella, Helen, Barbara & Patricia. He is survived by his son, daughter, grandson, brothers & sisters, a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and many friends.

A memorial service will be held January 27, 2013 at 2:30pm in the Skyline Room at the Museum of Flight at Boeing Field with the Reverend Jim Green officiating. Arrangements by Greenwood Funeral Home.

Published in The Seattle Times from Jan. 22 to Jan. 23, 2013