REFLECTIONS OF LIFE
DONALD JASON THOMAS was born on April 23, 1969 in Paterson, NJ to Donald Richard Thomas and Barbara J. Lightner Thomas. He entered into Eternal Peace on January 26, 2021.
He relocated to Ridgewood, NJ at a young age where he attended Orchard Elementary School and graduated from Ridgewood High School in 1987. Donald attended Metropolitan AME Zion Church, Ridgewood. He was an active member of the Jr. Usher Board and Sunday School (when reminiscing he often mentioned Mrs. Bertha Smith as being his favorite teacher).
He enlisted in the Navy and served from 1987 to 1991, receiving Meritorious Honors during Operation Desert Storm. He attended Vaughn College of Aeronautics and Technology, receiving a BS in Electronic Engineering.
Donald worked in the Operation Dept. for several airlines (Continental, Jet Blue, Delta) for 23 years, based mainly out of Newark (EWR) Airport, he started at the bottom and became Manager at Delta Airlines, training the JFK Team, ensuring that aircrafts were moved safely and radio communication with FAA was maintained. During his professional career he received numerous awards and honors. Donald was posthumously honored by the Ground/Tow crew at EWR, and his name was put across the tops of the Plane Tow trucks.
Donald was predeceased by his loving maternal grandmother Marion Lightner (Bigma) who laid the foundation for the gentle, kind, sensitive man he became. Also predeceased by his maternal grandfather Ulyses John Lightner and paternal grandparents, Etta Thomas Primus and Willie Thomas. He recently was predeceased by a favorite uncle, Eugene Thomas, and special cousin/sister Diane Patterson Banks.
Donald loved his family dearly, a parent couldn’t ask for a better son, growing up he tried to shield his younger brothers when they were in trouble. He was never favored with children, but he was Big Brother/Uncle to many (Mia, Vaughn, Shanequia, Brianna, Alexia, Cheyenne, Nicole).
He leaves to mourn him… his parents Donald Richard Thomas and Barbara Lightner Thomas, 4 brothers: Darius Thomas, Darin Thomas, Dustin Thomas, James Sheppard, 1 uncle: Minster William Lightner, 4 aunts: Lillian Lightner, Marion McCollum, Rita Williams, Estelle Tinsley, Arlene Lewis, Mary Thomas, 4 nieces: Jania Thomas, Samya Thomas, Izabella Thomas, Reta Thomas (goddaughter), 2 nephews: Trevor Sheppard, Malikye Lacey, cousins/sisters Jacqui McClendon and Arnise Lewis, cousins/Godsisters: Zina Banks, Jalisa McCollum, and a host of cousins and longtime friend Darryl Ford.
Funeral services will be private. Please click on the following link at 11:30 AM on 2/10/21 to view a live stream of the service: https://www.oneroomstreaming.com/view/authorise.php?k=161239737098957
Click here to view a webcast of the service on 2/10/2021 at 11:30 AM, Eastern Standard Time.
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