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Terry Leigh Thomas

August 14, 2013

August 13, 1927 - August 10, 2013

Terry Leigh Thomas passed away after a brief illness on Saturday, August 10, 2013. Mr. Thomas was a native Mississippian who spent his early years in Louisville, and his adult life in Meridian and Starkville. He was most recently a resident of Ocean Springs, where he moved to be near his daughters, Susie Thomas Ranager and Marty Thomas Kuki.

Mr. Thomas was an engineer and founder of Thomas Engineering Company, and was fascinated with how things work. He was an especially avid fan of airplanes both large and small. He obtained his private pilot’s license at a young age and frequently made trips around the southeast in his beloved Beech Bonanza. He was also a devoted RC airplane enthusiast and model builder for much of his life. Mr. Thomas also served as Starkville’s City Engineer for a number of years, counting among his many projects the Golden Triangle Regional Airport.

The Boy Scouts of America also figured heavily into his many interests. He led many a youthful scout to Jamborees and on field trips to Scout Ranches across the country.

Mr. Thomas was also a long time Rotarian and former member of the First United Methodist Church in Starkville.

Terry Thomas was married to his beloved wife, Margaret Downey Thomas, for 49 years. He is survived by his daughters, Susie Thomas Ranager and Marty Thomas Kuki, both of Ocean Springs, as well his son Terry Leigh Thomas II of Starkville.

He is also succeeded by his grandchildren, John Aaron Ranager of Oxford;  Emily Suzanne Ranager of Astoria, NY; Martin Kuki of Seattle, Wash. and Aya Kuki of Ocean Springs.

A visitation will be held at 9 am, Wednesday, August 14, 2013, at Welch Funeral Home in Starkville.  A graveside service for the family will follow at Oddfellows Cemetery.

You may go online and sign the guest register at

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