Elmer Thomas


Elmer Thomas passed away Thursday, July 14, at Pine Ridge Extended Care in Pagosa Springs, Colo. He was 94. Elmer was born in Sacramento, Calif., to Elmer and Lillian Thomas. As a youngster, he enjoyed Boy Scouts, where he served as a platoon leader and advanced to first class. He attended Sacramento High School, earning an all-conference in football. He also ran track and was a member of the winning 4x400 relay team at the West Coast Relays (high school division) at Fresno, Calif.

He served in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War in the flight crew of an amphibious PBY, flying from Itazuke Air Base to the naval base at Sasebo, Japan, carrying VIPs and classified mail. He reached the rank of lieutenant junior grade and left the reserves as a full lieutenant.

Upon graduating Stanford University, he worked as an engineer at Douglas Aircraft, Aerojet, and Stone and Webster.

He and his wife, Carol, raised three children while living in California, Massachusetts and Colorado.

Elmer and Carol retired to Pagosa Springs in 1996. He could be found skiing and hiking with the Gray Wolves Club and working in the ski shop at Ski and Bow Rack. 

Elmer and Carol attended Our Savior Lutheran Church. He served as treasurer and installed its sprinkler system. Elmer and Carol celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary before her death in 2013.

Elmer was preceded in death by his wife, Carol Thomas. He is survived by his three children, Ann, Fred and William.