Frederick W. Thomas of Eastham, MA died on November 7th at the age of 97. Born in Edgewood, RI, his lifelong passion for sailing emerged when, as a teenager, he restored a derelict sailboat recovered from the sands of Narragansett Bay. He married Marian P. Gill of Providence, RI, and the Doane/Gill family of Eastham, MA in 1942. Returning from the war, he and Marian bought a home in Barrington, RI where he served on the vestry of St. Johns Episcopal Church, as Commodore of the Barrington Yacht Club, and as Chair of the school building committee, leading the construction of 3 Barrington Schools. He was the Plant Manager of Crown Fastener in Warren, RI, then Vice President of Manufacturing of the Speidel Division of Textron in Providence. An adventurous outdoorsman, Fred skied, raced sailboats and cruised the coast of New England. Winters off the water inspired him to start a popular frostbite Sunfish racing program. In 1993 Fred and Marian moved to her ancestral home in Eastham. He and Marian were among the first in Eastham to place a conservation easement on their land. He worked as a volunteer for FISH, Habitat for Humanity and the National Seashore. After Marians death, Fred (at age 84) married Rosamond Groves of Eastham. They enjoyed an active and exuberant life until his death. He is survived by his wife, Rosamond Groves Thomas with her three children, Robert Groves, Francis Dodd and Rosamond Groves; a brother, Edward of Marthas Vineyard; a daughter Patricia Martin, of Eastham; a daughter Judith Spang of Durham, NH; a son, Jonathan Thomas of Riverside, RI; 6 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren. Fred was respected for his sturdy New England values. He delighted all who knew him with his charm and quick wit. Contributions in his name may be made to Hope Hospice of Cape Cod or Assoc. to Preserve Cape Cod.
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Published in The Cape Codder from Nov. 13 to Nov. 20, 2013