|Birth: ||Apr. 8, 1917|
|Death: ||Sep. 23, 2009|
Santa Clara County
Kathleen Phyllis Thomas April 8, 1917 - Sept. 23, 2009 92, beloved mother, grandmother and friend, passed away at her home on September 23. Phyllis will be lovingly remembered by her family, friends and community members as a lady who embodied the spirit of love, family, country and heritage. Phyllis was born in Bakersfield, California in 1917 to Harry and Catherine Hendry. Graduating from McFarland High School and attending Bakersfield Junior College she proudly graduated from the University of California Berkeley in 1940. She lived at International House with students from all over the world. She accepted a teaching position in Morgan Hill, teaching history and physical education. She met, the love of her life, George P. Thomas, Sr, a local cattle rancher, at an adult badminton class she was teaching. They married in 1943 and were happily married for 66 years. Phyllis was preceded in death by her husband, George and survived by her children, Patricia Reinhart (Mark) of Chico, George P. Thomas, Jr. (Shelle') of Morgan Hill and Catherine Goodere (Greg) of Morgan Hill, grandchildren Heather Bender, Megan Purdy, Alison McCoey, Marta Kingsbury, Preston Thomas, Lara Thomas, Braden Goodere and Sarah Goodere and 8 great grandchildren. Phyllis belonged to many professional and educational organizations including American Association of University Women, Santa Clara Cattlewomen, Delta Kapppa Gamma, UC Berkeley Alumni Association and Bear Backers, Morgan Hill Historical Society and Manzanita Eastern Star. She was founding member of St. John's Episcopal Church and the Live Oak Foundation. She was honored as Citizen of the Year 1985 and actively supported many community organizations that preserve the character of Morgan Hill we enjoy today. Her community involvement embodied the spirit of volunteerism. Phyllis was a strong believer in public education, especially encouraging "young people" to reach their potential and many young women to continue on in education and to pursue a career. She started the counseling department at Live Oak High School in 1953 and served as head counselor until her retirement in 1982. Her family and her heritage were of great importance. She loved family gatherings, sharing her love of history and country with all. She loved traveling, especially to Scotland and the British Isles, she organized world wide tours which she guided with enthusiasm. We will always remember our Mom's beautiful smile, lovely laugh and love of life. She was an inspiration to all of us and we learned a lot from her actions, deeds and voice. Our family would like to thank Phyllis's caregivers over the past 5 years. May Caraan, Henrietta Nuno and Anna Castenada for loving care. You are invited to a service Tuesday, September 29 at 1:00 PM at St. John's Episcopal Church, 17740 Peak Avenue, Morgan Hill. Contributions can be made to the Live Oak Foundation, 30 Keystone Ave, Morgan Hill, CA 95037. Johnson Funeral Home, Morgan Hill, serving the family.
Published in San Jose Mercury News on September 25, 2009.
Created by: Travelingal
Record added: Sep 18, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 58838119