Biography: A Celebration of Life
Willie James “Buck” Thomas was the fourth oldest son born to the late Herbert and Mamie McCoy Thomas on April 29, 1934 in Durham, North Carolina. On Friday, August 24, 2018 he departed this life to eternal rest.
Willie, affectionately called “Buck”, attended Mt. Olive A.M.E. Zion Church in Durham, North Carolina where his mother served as a minister. The family also worshipped at West Durham Baptist Church in Durham, North Carolina.
Buck attended Hillside High School where he played football. At the age of 14, Buck decided to leave Durham, North Carolina and migrate to New York. He worked odd jobs to support himself until he enlisted and served in the army where he was honorably discharged in 1957.
After the army Willie gained employment in the Garment District as a seamster and shop steward until he retired. In the late 60’s, Willie met Catherine Jones-Thomas and they shared over fifty years together.
Buck loved to dance and was the life of the party. He loved football and was a big Giants fan. Buck was “The Man’s Man”. He loved his family more than words could describe.
Willie was preceded in death by: his wife Catherine Jones-Thomas; three brothers:
Donald, David and Herbert Thomas Jr.; and three sisters: Ella Mae Thomas, Elizabeth Thomas Turner and Mary Louise Thomas Davis.
He leaves to cherish his memories: one daughter, Robin Jones of New York; one stepdaughter, Sharon Jones of New York; one stepson, Sean Alexander of New York; six grandsons, six granddaughters, eight great-grandsons, three great-granddaughters; five brothers: William of Durham, North Carolina, Joseph of Durham, North Carolina, Clyde (Charlene) of Durham, North Carolina, Larry (Patricia) of Las Vegas, Nevada, Carl (Vera) of Winston-Salem, North Carolina; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.