Cover photo for James Thomas's Obituary
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James Thomas

February 18, 1933 — October 15, 2022

South Bend

James Thomas

James Edward Thomas

February 18, 1933-October 15, 2022

James E. Thomas,89, of La Porte, IN, passed away Saturday October 15, 2022 at his home in South Bend, surrounded by his loved ones.

He was born February 18, 1933 in La Porte, IN, the son of Albert E. Thomas and Anna (Whorwell) Thomas-New.

James grew up in La Porte and graduated from La Porte High. In 1955, he moved to South Bend and after serving in the Army National Guard for 2 years and the United States Army for 3 years, he began his career with Raco Manufacturing as a Tool and Die maker.  James was a faithful and active member of New Life Church in South Bend, where he was an Usher and Deacon, especially enjoying presenting communion. James was an adventurous man who traveled to many states by car and loved spending time outdoors, feeding squirrels, watching the wild turkeys and generally surrounding himself with nature. He also spent time tinkering in his garage, enjoyed woodworking, and for over 45 years, collected Lionel trains.  What he found to be the most precious in his life, though, was his family, who he admired and adored.

James is survived by his longtime significant other, Mary Parker of South Bend; children, Patricia (Ted) Hodges of Lyman, SC, Michael James Thomas of Marcellos, MI, Genny (Cheri) Nowicki of Granger, IN, Michelle Thomas of Mishawaka, IN; bonus children, Nancy (Roger) Lykins of Gwen, AL, Susan (Jake) Lilly of Elkhart, IN; 18 grandchildren, 23 great-grandchildren and 1 great-great-grandchild.

He was preceded in death by his parents and two bonus children, Russell Cornwell and Roger Parker.

Arrangements are being entrusted to Haverstock Funeral Home and Cremation Services, 602 Maple Ave., La Porte, IN where the family will receive friends on Wednesday, October 19, 2022 from 10:00 until service time at 11:00 a.m. central time (11:00-12:00 EST) , with sister Sharon Vegh, New Life Church, officiating. Interment will follow at Patton Cemetery, La Porte, with military honors.

Memorial contributions in James' honor may be made to the Center for Hospice Care, 501 Comfort Place, Mishawaka, IN 46545 or

Online condolences may be made at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of James Thomas, please visit our flower store.


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