Vernon worked as an internal audit manager at Ford Motor Credit in Pensacola, Florida, where he lived with his first wife, Geneva Ruth Thomas, for many years. After retiring in 1988, Vernon visited Harlan for a Hall High School reunion where he became reacquainted with Bobbie Lee, widow of Tommy Lee, former Harlan County Court Clerk. More than 50 years after they graduated together, Vernon and Bobbie wed on September, 28, 1997. In 2003, he sold his property in Pensacola and returned to his old Kentucky home to live permanently.
Vernon shared 15 happy years with Bobbie and her children David Lee of London, England, Larry Lee (Jeanne Ann) of Harlan, and Cathy Lee of Lexington, Kentucky. He is also survived by three loving grandsons, Jeremy (Denise) Lee and Jonathon (Jennifer) Lee of Harlan, and Jared Lee (Hannah) of San Antonio, Texas. He was also blessed to have five great-grandchildren: Kevin Thomas and Grant, Isabella, Ethan, and Anabelle.
Vernon is also survived by his daughter, Sereta (Roger) Barnes of St. Elmo, Illinois, and a son, Paul H. Thomas of Jersey City, New Jersey. and two granddaughters, Amber Barnes of Gainesville, Florida, and Heather Barnes of St. Elmo, Illinois.
Besides his parents he is preceded in death by, his brother James “Paul” Thomas and Christine “June” Thomas Nix, all of whom had roots in Harlan County.
Visitation will be at Anderson-Laws & Jones Funeral Home on Thursday, December 20, 2012, at 6:00 pm with a memorial service to follow at 7:00 pm with Rev. Kyle Burnette officiating.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations in his name to Alzheimer’s Research at Sanders-Brown Center on Aging Foundation, 138 Leader Ave., Lexington, Ky. 40536.
Condolences can be made at www.harlanobits.net.
Anderson-Laws & Jones Funeral Home is honored to be serving the family of Vernon Thomas.