Lonnie James Thomas

Published 5:03 pm Friday, June 10, 2022

July 1, 1965-June 8, 2022


Lonnie James Thomas left this earth on June 8 after a courageous battle with cancer. He was, as always, with his loved ones.

Lonnie was born July 1, 1965 to Johnny (and Janie) Thomas Jr. in Buchanan, Michigan. Lonnie grew up in the farmland and small towns of Southwestern Michigan with some time also spent in Rochester, IN. As a young man Lonnie relocated to Columbus, OH where he graduated from Franklin University. There he met his first wife, Chelsi Whitney Arrigo, with whom he had his two beautiful, much-loved children, both of whom proceed him, Caleb James Thomas and Mikayla Thomas (Peanut).

In 2010 Lonnie met his love, his Pippy, Tina Marie Thomas, his wife of 12 years, who proceeds him. Among Lonnie’s other surviving family are his beloved mother, Jane Payne Wolf of Three Oaks, his loving baby-sister Tammy (Kent) Anders of Niles, his 5 step-children, all of Columbus; Nick (Becky) Wright, Toni Lynn Wright, Gordon (Jessica) Wright, Brandon Bell, and Raymond Petelis (Drew).  Lonnie also leaves behind many other loved ones; Caleb’s fiancé Amanda Nonamaker (Panda), as well as lots of cousins, aunts, uncles, grandchildren, nieces and nephews.  Lonnie was preceded in death by both of his fathers, John Thomas Jr. and Frank Wolf.

In his free time, Lonnie enjoyed the company of his family, playing and singing country music on his guitar to the delight of anyone in his presence, often called into play at family gatherings of any size. He greatly enjoyed family vacations, big and small, to Nashville, on a cruise, to historical sites and most recently to Mackinaw Island. He also loved board games, elaborate Lego builds, D&D and the game of Risk, in which he almost always won. In his career, Lonnie always endeared himself to his staff, leading sales teams at various banking, retail, grocery and restaurant franchises, all of his employees speaking very highly of his leadership, friendship and team building skills. To know him was to love him. Truly, all who knew him, grief our loss of him. We will miss his love, his jokes, his smile, his good nature, his music and singing, his generosity of spirit, his companionship, and his all-around good-guyness.

The Ewing will be at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, June 15, at Hoven Funeral Home in Buchanan, Michigan, with services at noon. Graveside will be following at Forest Lawn Cemetery in Three Oaks with a celebration of life after at the Galien American Legion.