Chuck Thomas

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Chuck Thomas, 66, of Oskaloosa, passed away Friday, July 5, 2024, at his home in rural Oskaloosa.

Charles Willard Thomas, son of George Harry and Darlene Marie (Decker) Thomas, was born in Iowa City, Iowa on March 17, 1958. Chuck spent his early childhood in Sigourney; then, the family moved to Ottumwa briefly, and he ended up in Oskaloosa, where he finished his education. As a child, his passion was baseball, which later shifted to boxing. As a teen, he competed in the Silver and Golden Boxing Tournaments.

Chuck, never being one to sit still, left school early to start his working career. He got into his first semi at 18 and drove for several companies such as Lynn’s and D.R.S Transportation. In 1981, he married his best friend, Cindy Louise Thorn, in New Sharon, Iowa. Chuck and his father’s passion was always mechanics, which led Chuck’s family to follow him to California in 1986, where he helped his dad work in the heavy equipment industry.

In 1990, Chuck sustained a head injury, which was life-changing and required a move back to Oskaloosa. After years of rehabilitation, he opened Thomas Service and Repair in 1998 and operated it with his son, Charlie, until 2011. At that time, he and his wife Cindy returned to trucking, and they enjoyed ending their working career traveling down the road together just like it started, retiring together in 2019.
Chuck loved his family fiercely, and his all-time favorite role was being a papa. He also loved to tinker with anything with an engine. He was constantly building things; backyard sheds and chicken coops were his favorites. He loved his gardens and critters and was known to sneak away with a rod and reel.

His family includes his wife, Cindy; his children: Charlie Thomas (Kris DeJong) of Leighton, Cody (Crystal Mwalongo) Thomas of Des Moines, and Chelsee (Jared) Johnston of Pleasant Hill; 17 grandchildren: Natalie, Colton, Morgan, Keegen, Kaylee, Sawyer, Bayleigh, Kristian, Cooper, Wyatt, Marco, Lillyan, Addison, Everly, Isabelle, and Warner; a great-grandson, Armani; his nine siblings: George (Christine) Thomas Jr. of Pella, Rodney (Peggy) West of Oskaloosa, Karen Sauer of Oskaloosa, Susan Kelly of New Holland, PA, Merlin Messerschmitt of Hiawatha, IA, Cindy Bracy of Des Moines, Richard Thomas of Oskaloosa, Diane Robuck of Pella, and Meghan (Trevor) Thomas of Las Vegas, NV; and a sister-in-law, Gloria Decker of Eddyville.

In addition to his parents, Chuck was preceded in death by a brother, James Decker; a sister, Deborah Asher; a sister-in-law, Carol Thomas; and a grandson, Kayne Ruiz.

As was his wish, Chuck’s body has been cremated. A memorial service will be held at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, July 11, 2024, at Langkamp Funeral Chapel & Crematory, with Pastor Dan Glandon of the Sigourney First Christian Church officiating. The family will greet visitors from 9:30 a.m. to service time. Memorial contributions can be made to the family.

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