Paul Slade Thoms
Passed on: July 4th, 2012
80 years of age, died on July 4, 2012. Born February 19, 1932, to parents James Ernest Thoms, Anglican Schoolmaster and Lay Reader, and Gertrude Helen Thoms (nee Bridger), Midwife trained under Sir Wilfred Grenfell. He and his siblings (William, Charlotte [Kitty], Esau, James, Phillip, John [Jack] and Leslie) survived the Great Depression and ensuing starvation and tuberculosis, by fishing, hunting, berry picking, vegetable growing and hard work. Through it, Paul attained a lifelong love-of-the-land. The family lived in St. Anthony, Garnish, Port au Bras, Rock Harbour, Lamaline and Gambo. Upon completion of high school, Paul enlisted in the R.C.A.F. on July 1, 1950, serving for five years in France, Belgium and Germany. Afterwards he worked with his father as co-owner and then President of T n' T Surveys Limited. On December 18, 1956, Paul married the love of his life Elsie Maud (nee Barrow) and together they raised six children. From 1967-1972 he farmed Circle T Farms, co-owned with brother Jim near North West Gander River. In the early 1970's, Paul was elected twice as Liberal MHA (under Joey Smallwood) for Bonavista North. Having witnessed the ravages of poverty, Paul stated Confederation was "a blessing". He stated one of his "greatest joys in life" was serving as Lay Reader in the Anglican Church (from Labrador bush camp to pro-cathedral in Gander) and Paul's calling was realized upon his ordination as Deacon in 1991 and Priest in 1992, serving in Belleoram and Twillingate. Paul also served as Grand Master for the Province's Loyal Orange Lodge and Royal Black Preceptory. As such, he affected a donation to Daffodil Place of $250,000. Charitable, like his mother, he often delivered food, clothing or firewood to the needy. His was a life well lived and in service to the community. He leaves his devoted and loving wife; children Paul (Helena), Helen, Minnie and Frances (Rodney) (predeceased by sons Nicholas and Samuel who died August 17, 1979); grandchildren Jonathan Thoms, Cpl. Jeremy Thoms, Ambrose McDonald, Nicholas McDonald, Keegan Thoms, Kylea Thoms, Zachary Kean, Jordan Kean, Nikkola Walsh, Nadyezhda Squires and Malcolm Squires; and great-granddaughters Madison Thoms and Lucy Thoms-Damm.