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Darren Thomas

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Darren Thomas Obituary
DARREN THOMAS Oct. 17, 1960 - June 23, 2013 Darren Leroy Thomas, 52, died of a heart attack on Sunday, June 23, while riding his bike in Temecula. He was a beloved husband, father, teacher, and friend. Born in Montana, he was adopted by his wonderful parents, Dixie and LaVern Thomas of Boise, Idaho. He attended school in Boise, Idaho and graduated from Borah High School in 1979, where he played football. In 1985, he earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Idaho in Moscow, where he was a loyal member of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity. He moved to the Los Angeles area to try stand-up comedy, but ended up using his comedic talents to inspire secondary students about history. He taught school for 27 years, the last 15 at Chaparral High School in Temecula. In 1989, he married Carolyn Ott of Riverside and they raised a beautiful family of three children together: Crista (22), Matthew (19), and Kyle (16). Darren loved to travel, camp, hike, read, and play games together with his family. He was preceded in death by his father, LaVern Thomas and nephew Thomas Gardunia. In addition to his wife and children, he is survived by his mother, Dixie, of Boise, Idaho; brothers Bernie (Lesa) Thomas and Brent (Rhonda) Thomas of Boise; sister Merri (Craig) Gardunia of Huntsville, Alabama; father-in-law and mother-in-law Dan and Jeaneen Ott of Riverside; sister-in-law Dana (Bob) Bailey; brother-in-law David Ott; three nephews, Chad, Ryan, and Caden, and his niece Sarah. A celebration of his life is set for 1 p.m., Saturday, July 6 at the Chaparral High School gymnasium, 27215 Nicolas Rd, Temecula. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial donations to the Thomas Children College Education Fund at www.youcaring.com/darren.thomas. memorialfund. Services are under the direction of England Family Mortuary of Temecula www.EnglandFamilyMortuary.com 951-695-8555
Published in Press-Enterprise on June 30, 2013
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