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Edwin Gail “Squirrel” Thomas passed on to Heaven Sunday July 29th, 2018 after months of declining health.
Born August 1st, 1934 “Squirrel” was born and raised in Alexander County, NC by his father Paul Alexander Thomas and mother Dorothy June Lackey Thomas. Preceded in his death by his parents; his brother Raeford Thomas; grandson TJ Prevette; brother-n-law Hugh Simpson and sister-in-law Faye Spicer.
Surviving are his wife of 47 years Betty (Betsy) McCoy Thomas; and children Kirt Thomas and wife Jennie of Stokesdale, Michelle Johnson and husband Craig (Statesville), Keith Prevette and wife Susan (Statesville), and JW Prevette (Statesville). Grandchildren include Hunter Thomas, Corey Johnson, Jaden Johnson, Krista Prevette, and Loren Prevette Steele and husband Michael.
Also surviving are Squirrel’s brother John Wayne Thomas and wife Debbie of Taylorsville; sister Sandra Thomas Simpson of Hiddenite; sister-n-law Katherine Thomas of Hiddenite and numerous nieces and nephews along with great nieces and nephews.
After graduating Hiddenite High School, Squirrel attended Gardner Webb College. After two years of college, he was drafted to play for the Cincinnati Reds Baseball Team (minors). Just 2 years into baseball, he signed up for the US Army 1956-1958. All the while, playing baseball in the Army as well! Once his two years of Duty were done, his baseball career (Statesville Owls) continued landing him playing for the California Angels for a short stint until 1965. After his success in baseball, he became well known as a scratch golfer playing in the minors 1970-1972. Squirrel was inducted to the Alexander County Hall of Fame in 2015 for his amazing athletic accomplishments in baseball, basketball, and golf. He continued on playing golf and married Betty (Betsy) McCoy in 1970. Golf still continued, but as a profession he became well known for AFLAC (American Family Life Assurance Co). He had a long career with them for 22 years. His passion was raising a family, playing golf, and being a friend. His calling was being a witness for Christ with his wonderful Gospel singing and was very involved with Gideon’s International (28 years) handing out testaments and spreading God’s word. He loved and enjoyed fellowship with all of his church family and close friends throughout his entire life. Even in declining health and two strokes he continued to sing and witness for Gideon’s and Diamond Hill Baptist Church. He touched many lives even at 83 at the Elder Center of Statesville and Autumn Care of Statesville.
Service will be held Friday 8/3/18 at Diamond Hill Baptist Church 2320 E. Broad St Statesville, NC 28625. Receiving from 10am-11am. Service to follow at Diamond Hill. Burial with full military honors provided by the Iredell County Veterans Burial Detail will be at Oakwood Cemetery following the church service.
In lieu of flowers, the family request donations to Diamond Hill Baptist Church address above, and Gideon’s International P.O. Box 97251 Washington, DC 20090-7251 and Elder Center of Statesville 502 Brevard Street Statesville, NC 28677. Online condolences can be made to the family at www.nicholsonfunerals.com and Nicholson Funeral Home is serving the family.
Diamond Hill Baptist Church
2320 E. Broad Street, Statesville NC 28677
P.O. Box 148, Statesville NC 28687