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Brian W. Thomas Jr.

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Brian Willis Thomas, Jr., known to all as 'JR', died unexpectedly on Thursday, June 9, 2011. He is survived by his wife, Tania (Bishop) Thomas and their sons, Trey Hunter Thomas and Tyson Brian Thomas; a stepson, Christopher Pearson and a stepdaughter, Madison Pearson, all of whom live in Grafton. He also leaves his father, Brian W. Thomas, Sr. and his wife, Susan (Mocsny) Thomas of Westborough, his grandmother Dolores (Knowles) Thomas of Shrewsbury, and a cousin who was raised as sister to him, Tracey (Miller) Bryant of Palm Bay, Florida. He is also survived by his loving aunts and uncles: Tyrone and Joyce Hendricks of Fishkill, NY; Carlton and Lorraine Tatum of Albany, NY; Jabari Penda of NY; Sandra (Tatum) and Nelson Castro of Worcester, Sharon Tatum-Amissah, who was JRs godmother, of Worcester, and Keith Tatum of Worcester; Gary Thomas and Sharon Faniel of Wareham; Wayne and Cheryl Thomas of New Bedford; Anthony Thomas of New Bedford, who was JRs godfather; and Tracie (Thomas) and David Waller of Shrewsbury. He is missed by many loving cousins and friends. He was predeceased by his beloved mother, Karen (Tatum) Thomas, his grandmother, Hazel (Brown) Tatum, his grandfathers, Dewey Tatum and Hunter Thomas, Jr. JR was born in Framingham on October 10, 1975 and lived for many years in Shrewsbury before settling with his family in Grafton. He graduated from Saint Johns High School and the University of Maryland. JR earned a masters degree in education from Worcester State University. JR and his wife owned JR Thomas CrossFit in Shrewsbury. He previously worked as a coach and director of health and physical education at Saint Johns High School in Shrewsbury. He held many certifications in physical training, and was a member of the CrossFit Community, the National Strength and Conditioning Association, and the International Youth and Conditioning Association. He was a member of the Corridor Nine Chamber of Commerce, a volunteer coach for youth sports, and played for the University of Maryland Alumni baseball team. A graveside service was held Wednesday, June 15, 2011 at Mountain View Cemetery in Shrewsbury, where he was laid to rest next to his mother. Following the service, family and friends too numerous to count gathered at Wachusett Country Club for a celebration of his life. In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to the JR Thomas Memorial Fund, Citizens Bank, in care of Kathy Kennedy, 34 Main Street, Natick, MA 01760.

Published in The Shrewsbury Chronicle from June 21 to June 28, 2011
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