On Wednesday, September 21, 2011, Thomas E. Wilson passed away peacefully at the Reno Veterans Hospital with his loving family by his side. He was 79 years-old.
Thomas was born August 16, 1932 in Memphis, Tennessee.
Thomas received a college-scholarship from the Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps then graduated from Marquette University where he majored in journalism. He served our country as a Marine Corps Lieutenant, and during special court-martials in Europe and Asia, he served as special prosecutor and defense attorney. As a Marine Executive Officer, Thomas concurrently led a series of four-platoons through the Parris Island Training Depot.
Upon completion of his tour, Thomas worked as a newspaper reporter at the Memphis Publishing Company in Tennessee, the Herald News in Colorado, and the Merced-Star Sun Newspaper in California. He moved to Nevada and worked as the Clark County District Health Department Information Officer. Thomas also worked as a reporter at the Las Vegas Sun Newspaper.
Thomas enjoyed dabbling in Nevada politics and managed Chic Hecht’s campaign to U.S. Senator, where Senator Hecht served one-term. Thomas later managed Harry Reid’s campaign for Nevada Lieutenant Governor, and led his first campaign for U.S. Senator.
Thomas worked as special editor and news reporter at the Las Vegas Review Journal and wrote his own political column until he was appointed by Governor Mike O’Callaghan as Director of Nevada State Comprehensive Health Planning.
Upon appointment, Thomas moved his family to the Carson City area and, days after his move, his wife died of a cerebral hemorrhage. As Director of Comprehensive Health Planning, Thomas succeeded at the statewide-expansion of emergency services to patients and mandating first-responder education.
Upon leaving state service, he owned and operated several small businesses until his retirement. Since, Thomas has enjoyed living near his children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren in Missouri and Nevada.
Thomas’s hobbies were playing chess, reading and writing, and telling ghost stories. He was an avid swimmer who competed in national and local contests throughout much of his life, winning one of the National AAU Masters Swim Championships in 1977.
But most of all, Thomas was madly in love with his family, and he especially enjoyed spending time and mentoring his children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren.
Thomas is survived by his beloved family: Four children: Mary Wilson-Huggins (Travis) in NV, Margaret (Maggie) Wilson in NV, Thomas E. (Janet) Wilson in HI, and Marsha Wilson-Peabody (Lance) in MO., Eight grandchildren: Brian Howard in NV, Timothy Kyle Mc Callister in NV, Katie and Mollie Kohler in MO; Susan and Hunter Wilson in HI; and Christian and Jessica Huggins in NV; Three great grandchildren: Rebecca Howard in NV; and Damien and Drake Mc Callister in NV; and, his Three siblings William (Billy Joe) Joseph Wilson in AL; Regis Ann Wilson-Vaughn (Herb) in FL; and Susan Clyde Wilson-Louden (Jack) in FL. Thomas was predeceased by his fist wife, Maria Vayola Cordova –Wilson in 1970, and mother of his four children. His parents, Ernest Eliot Wilson and Mary Hazel Noble-Wilson, and his siblings, Patricia Louise and James Edward, also preceded him in death.
Thomas is deeply loved by his family and friends and is greatly missed. Per his request, a private ceremony was held for him and his children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren celebrated and honored his life, and his ashes spread throughout the United States, and the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Those who knew and loved Thomas are invited to mail their condolences to daughter Margaret (Maggie) Wilson at 74 Boyd Pl. #4, Reno, NV 89503, or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org, or write a message Thomas’s Facebook page at Thomas Wilson.