JOHN J. THOMAS, 86, of Brazil, Ind., prominent Indiana Conference lay member, delegate to General and Jurisdictional Conferences and national leader in the Boy Scouts of America, died Thursday, July 22, 2010. Visitation will be at French Funeral Home, 421 East National Avenue in Brazil from 3 to 8 p.m. on Sunday, July 25 with Masonic services being held at 7:30 p.m. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, July 26 at the First United Methodist Church, 201 N. Meridian Street in Brazil with the Rev. Robert Ostermeier officiating. Burial will follow at Clearview Cemetery. Thomas was an Indiana State Representative for 24 years and trustee of both DePauw University and the University of Indianapolis. He also has served as church lay leader, Certified Lay Speaker, District Lay Leader, Conference Lay Leader, Conference President of United Methodist Men, General Council on Ministries, General Board of Church and Society, Commission on General Conference, Area Episcopacy Committee, Director of the United Methodist Men Foundation, Chairman of the Commission on General Conference, Affiliate member of the General Board of Discipleship and has delivered the Laity Address to General Conference.
Survivors include: wife, Marion Thomas of Mobile, Ala.; children. Jana Wilkes of Avon, Dr. Jamie Thomas of Pocatello, Idaho, Joanna Connors of Brazil; former wife Jessie Thomas of Brazil; grand children, Angela Ross of Avon, Christine Wolf of Ohio, Nick French of Brazil, Cassandra Parkins of Indianapolis; great-grandchildren, Madelyn Hayes, Morgan Hayes, Makayla Hayes, Isabella Ross, Olivia Wolf, Emily Wolf, Mara Parkins, and Kaden French; brothers, Henry Thomas and Amos Thomas both of Greencastle; sister, Mary Jane Landis of Fla., sister-in-law Shirley Thomas of Clay City. Memorial contributions may be made to the Boy Scouts of America.