Memorial services for James “T” George Thomas, 78, of Leland will be at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, March 30 at Leland United Methodist Church, of which T was a lifelong member. He died Wednesday, March 27, 2019, at Delta Regional Medical Center after a long battle with cancer. Arrangements are under the direction of Boone Funeral Home, Leland.
T was born in Leland to Sam Thomas and Victoria Ellis Thomas on April 23, 1940. He acquired the nickname “T” early in grade school as a result of there being two other students also named Jimmy in his small class at Leland Elementary. In 1958 he graduated from Leland High, where he had participated in several sports, as player and as team manager. After high school, T attended and graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi, where he was a business major and a USM cheerleader, later becoming an active member of the university’s alumni association.
T owned and operated several businesses across the Delta in his lifetime, including Thomas Insurance and Real Estate in Leland in the 1970s and ’80s, which he ran with his then wife, Millie. He was a passionate fisherman and golfer, and the coach of his sons’ Little League team, the Eagles. He took no greater joy in life than being around those he loved, and he was an especially kind, devoted, and loving grandfather. He was a member of the Leland Lions Club, the Masons, and the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, the latter of which he attended regularly late in life. Known across the Delta for his laughter, his sense of humor, and his friendliness, T leaves behind many grieving friends.
T is preceded in death by his mother and father; his brothers, Sam Thomas and Robert Thomas; and his sisters, Shirley Haney Hootsell and Cheryl Ann Marchant. He is survived by his son James “Jimmy” George Thomas Jr., daughter-in-law, Annie, and granddaughter, Amelia, of Oxford; son Richard Samuel Thomas of Leland; brother David Allen Thomas of Leland, former spouse Mille Stivers of Oxford, and numerous in-laws and nieces and nephews.
There will be a visitation from 10:00-11:00 a.m., on Saturday at the church. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in his name to Leland United Methodist Church.