Dr. Jerry Aroe Thomas, MD
May 22, 1953 - September 26, 2023
Dr. Jerry Aroe Thomas, MD, age 70, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, September 26, 2023 surrounded by family. He was a native and longtime resident of Thomas, LA. He was a member of Thomas First Baptist Church. Jerry had a deep passion for serving the community of Washington parish as a Family Physician, Coroner, State Representative, State Senator, and in the Army National Guard. An All State Basketball player, he graduated Valedictorian of the class of 1971 at Thomas High School. After graduating Summa Cum Laude early from Southeastern Louisiana University in Dec 1974, he taught High School Science for 6 months at Bowling Green in 1975. He went on to receive his M.D. from Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center New Orleans in 1979. He practiced medicine for 44 years as a Family Physician. At the age of 26, he was elected Coroner of Washington Parish. During the 1980s, he served at the rank of Major with the Louisiana Army National Guard as the Battalion Surgeon of the 205th Engineering Battalion, including an overseas stint in Panama. In 1988, he was elected to the Louisiana State legislature where he served in both houses until 2004. A few of his most proud accomplishments were the successful advocation to save the hospitals in Bogalusa, the creation of the Bogue Chitto State Park in Franklinton, the creation of a new library in Thomas, and the soon completion of the Early Education program in Thomas. He was a loving husband, father, grandfather, brother and uncle. His inexhaustible interest in learning about the people and the world around him will never be forgotten.
Jerry is survived by his wife of 47 years, Lou Ann Pitre Thomas, his children and spouses, Dr. Jason and Kathryn Thomas, Pete Thomas, Lander Thomas, Joanna and Blake Gill; his sister, Dianna Thomas; his grandchildren, Jon-Ashton Dykes, Lily Thomas, Abrie Thomas, Landry Thomas, Evelyn Thomas, Rush Thomas, Eleanor Thomas, and Everett Thomas; sisters in law and brothers in law, Susan and Richard Love, Karen and Jimmy Miller, Laura and Jerry Jones, Carol and Todd Campbell; also numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and many dear friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, R.O. and Nelline Thomas, brothers Kerry Thomas and Richie Thomas, two infant siblings, father in law and mother in law Harold and Shirley Pitre, nephew Jonathan Love.
Pallbearers will be Randy Strickland, Steve Knight, Barry Seal, Justin Brown, Chaplin Smalley, and Sean Erwin.
In lieu of flowers, the family prefers memorial donations to the Thomas Cemetery Fund (mailing address, 51846 Lawrence Creek Road, Franklinton, LA 70438).
Visitation will be from 9:00 am until 2:00 pm at First Baptist Church of Franklinton, (903 Cleveland Street, Franklinton, LA) on Monday, October 2, 2023. A funeral service will be held in the church at 2:00 pm Monday with Rev. Richard Magee, Rev. Tom Descant and Rev. Harold Gaddy officiating. Graveside services will follow at Thomas Memorial Gardens.