Paul James Thomas
May 12, 1946
Apr 21, 2023
Paul James Thomas, 76, of Louisville died Friday, April 21, 2023, at Norton Audubon Hospital.
Visitation 10-12 Saturday, April 29, 2023 at Community Missionary Baptist Church 4909 E. Indian Trail. Funeral to follow at 12 Noon. Burial Petersburg-Newburg Cemetery.
Paul James Thomas was born Sunday, May 12,1946, in Shelbyville, Kentucky, to Carl Thomas and Josephine Washington Thomas. He was their first born and the apple of their eyes until the family continued to grow, adding Alice, Ron, Ben, Larry, Mary, and Betty. Each one of the children would claim to be the favorite because of all the love they received while growing up.
When the family moved to Louisville, Newburg was their destination and Lincoln Park subdivision was where they chose to live. Back in the day, the neighborhood was an extended family where parents treated every child as if it were their own by watching out for each one and making necessary corrections when necessary. The Thomas household was a safe place where children could hangout. Mrs. Josephine always had something on the stove just in case a child was hungry.
While still a youth, Paul gave his life to Christ and was baptized at Community Missionary Baptist Church under the pastorage of Rev. William T, Shumake. There he served as a trustee for many years. Although his health issues would not allow him to attend services regularly, he remained a member. He was rather quiet and easy- going, but when it came to eating, Paul would be the first one for any meal. Oh, how he loved to eat! When everyone else was eating off of a regular dinner plate, Paul ate off of a meat platter to make sure his helpings were substantial, and this never changed! His favorite meal was chicken, greens, green beans, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, and strawberry cheesecake for dessert. In later years, he enjoyed all desserts and always had a case of Big K grape soda in the trunk of his car.
The Thomas family was known for their athletic abilities, and Paul started things off by running track for Southern High School. After graduation, Uncle Sam invited him to serve his country by the way of the draft. He reported for duty, served 4 yrs. in the United States Army with a tour of duty in Germany.
When he returned to Louisville, Paul became a long-distance truck driver with Smith Trucking Company. He was constantly on the road, and rarely home. After numerous years, he decided to change jobs to be home more and was blessed to become a driver for the US Post Office where he was blessed to have shorter runs. When he heard there was a shortage of bus drivers for Jefferson County Public Schools, Paul made another career change and began transporting students to and from school until he retired. However, retirement did not last forever, he came out of it to join the family business, Thomas Movers. His driving skills were valuable. He was skilled at driving, loading, and moving households from one city to another. Before there were GPS systems, Paul could tell others how to navigate Louisville using all the shortcuts and alternate routes needed to get around Louisville with the least amount of congestion as possible. When driving his car, he was known to have a heavy foot and occasionally exceeded the speed limit.
In his spare time, Paul enjoyed spending time with family, watching wrestling, race cars, and being a U of L Cardinal fan. On Friday, April 21, 2023, Paul James Thomas’s journeys came to an end when he departed this earthly life. He was preceded in death by his parents and brothers, Ron and Larry Thomas. He leaves behind to cherish their memories of him: children, Donika Michelle Thomas, DeShawn James Thomas; stepson, JahDal Kenez Wells; four grandchildren, Donavan Thomas, Zyon Thomas, Micahya Thomas, and Keiliyana Wells; siblings, Alice Thomas Calbert, Ben Thomas (Teresa), Mary Thomas Helm, and Betty Thomas Beckham; special niece and caregiver, Lorie Beckham; and a host of relatives and friends who were like family.