Obituary for Virgil Howard Thomas Virgil Howard Thomas of Longwood, Florida, passed peacefully in his home on January 25, 2022 following a lenghty illness. Virgil was a Florida Native born in Bushnell, FL on March, 1938 to Marvin and Marie Yohe Thomas. He is survived by his wife of 57 years Mary Jean (Ginger) Thomas. Their only son, John Howard passed on August 29, 2020 due to unexpected heart failure. Virgil Thomas also leaves behind a brother Marvin (Bucky) and Neva his wife, half sister Phyllis Thomas Sanford (Tom) of Savannah, GA, Sisters-in-law Chris Foerster Mauldin (Frank) of Flowery Branch, GA and Lori Foerster of Orlando, FL. Nephews Marvin Thomas of Texas, Richard Thomas (Jane) of Clermont, FL, Ron Thomas (Cathy) of Orlando, FL and Patrick Mauldin (Connie) of Flowery Branch, GA. Neices Lauren Mauldin Howe of San Antonio, TX, Susan Marsh Hunt (Ron), Anna Marsh Revels (Nate) and Cindy Marsh Williams (Kenny) all of Lake Panasoffkee, FL.
March 1, 1960 Virgil enlisted in the United States Air Force where he trained and was an Air Traffic Controller until his release in 1963. He re-entered UF to finish his studies and graduated in 1965 with a BSBA Degree. He was hired by Kimberly-Clark Corp and along with his wife Ginger and their young son John, moved to Decatur, GA to work in their Hospital Products Division. Returning to Florida in 1979, Virgil and Ginger opened and ran Palm Springs Printing for the next 32 years. He was a Rotarian with Rotary International, a service organization promoting goodwill, peace and understanding in the world. He was honored as a Paul Harris Fellow during his tenure. He was also a Volunteer member of Florida Citrus Sports annual football classic. He was named Volunteer of the Year during one of his many years he served with them. Virgil’s love of sports gave him up close and personal access to both coaches and players during the scouting season and annual game on New Year’s Day.
His love of family and friends was his backbone and his work ethic was his motivation. Customers and vendors alike found Virgil to be a friend as well. Along with working, volunteering and family life, Virgil found time to pursue his first love…flying. Over time he amassed ratings of private pilot, single and multi engine, Rotocraft-helicopter and was instrument rated. Virgil had a permanent crink in his neck from looking up to see what was going over. In December of 2004 he received his Certificate as a Florida Certified
Horticulture Professional. Retiring in 2011, he remained active in a variety of ways mostly on his property in Lake Pan, gardening, traveling and having time to do what he enjoyed most. Virgil’s interment will be in the National Cemetary in Bushnell, FL on 3/16/2022 at 2 pm. Due to the sheer number of burials, there is a 20 minute time allotment of which the military honors take 12 minutes. We understand this time restraint and distance would make it difficult to attend. Hopefully in the not too distant future a Celebration of Life will be held. Everyone has a story to tell about Virgil. If you do plan to attend, please arrive 15 minutes early so they can get all of us to the site in one group. We request that in lieu of flowers that you donate either to the charity of your choice or Virgil’s favorite was St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. I would also ask that you check this site for any last minute information about the service.