Wanda Fern Thomas of Miami, Oklahoma passed from this life Friday, August 14, 2020 at her home in Miami. She was 96.
Wanda Fern was born July 23, 1924 in rural Welch, Oklahoma to Bruce Kellie and Ida Fern (Goad) Ingram. She grew up on the family farm northwest of Welch and graduated from Welch High School in 1942. She then attended Miami Business College in Miami, Oklahoma and graduated in 1943. She went to work for Douglas Aircraft as a secretary in Oklahoma City during World War II. On June 3, 1946 she married the love of her life William Paul Thomas. While Paul attended St. Louis College of Mortuary Science Wanda Fern worked as a secretary for General Motors in St. Louis, Missouri. December 14, 1948 Paul and Wanda Fern opened Paul Thomas Funeral Home in Picher, Oklahoma. She received her funeral director’s license and worked diligently beside Paul in the funeral home for the next 65 years until her retirement. In 1991 the Thomas family opened Paul Thomas Funeral Home in Miami and later Paul Thomas Funeral Home in Commerce in 2005.
Wanda Fern loved people, especially the people of Picher and worked tirelessly to help them in any way she could. She was a 60 year member of the First United Methodist Church in Picher, Past Worthy Matron two times of the Order of the Eastern Star Chapter 330 and Rainbow Mother for the Rainbow Girls in Picher. She was also a member and past president of En Avant Literary Club, American Legion Auxillary and the Rebekah Lodge in Picher. She had been a member over 50 years of Oklahoma Funeral Director’s Association and the National Funeral Director’s Association. She was honored as the Grand Marshall of the Picher Christmas Parade in 2015.
Wanda Fern was preceded in death by her husband Paul on July 11, 2015, her parents, Bruce Kellie and Ida Fern Ingram, four brothers, Little Paul Ingram, James Bruce Ingram, William Carl Ingram and Henry Clyde Ingram and five sisters, Delma Lorene Armstrong, Anna Ruth McMillin, Ruby Francis Metzen, Nanna Pearl Miller and Pauline Elizabeth Owens.
Wanda Fern is survived by her son, Paul Ingram Thomas and his wife Kari of Miami, Oklahoma, four grandchildren, Annamaria Elizabeth Thomas, Dalton Avery Young, Thomas Austin Brown and his wife Abby and Tyler Joe Brown, several nieces and nephews and many friends she loved dearly.
Wanda Fern will lie in state at Paul Thomas Funeral Home in Miami. The family will receive friends Wednesday August 19, 2020 from 2 - 6 p.m. at Paul Thomas Funeral Home in Miami. Private family services will be held. Interment will be in Welch Cemetery, Welch, Oklahoma. Services have been placed in the care of Paul Thomas Funeral Home and Cremation Service of Miami, Oklahoma. Online condolences may be made at www.paulthomasfuneralhomes.com.