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Tharp Funeral Home and Crematory

Tharp Funeral Home and Crematory
116 Benton Ave. West
Albia, IA 52531
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Memories & Candles

“Eldon was a tremendous "growing-up-together" buddy. From school bus rides from north of Leon thru Decatur activities with visits to Aunt Ada's house...Read More »
1 of 9 | Posted by: Dannie and Marilyn Akers - joplin, MO

“We met Eldon and Coleen in 2007, all 4 of us seemed to hit it off right from the beginning. They were attending to their beautiful garden out behind...Read More »
2 of 9 | Posted by: Cliff & Carolyne Benboe - OR

“I did not know Eldon well at all..He just struck me ..as genuinely nice.. a good man. I sat near him in Church and I believe we have shared a hand...Read More »
3 of 9 | Posted by: Karen M. Kearney - Albia, IA

“So sorry to hear of Eldon's passing. Our condolences to his family. ”
4 of 9 | Posted by: Mark and Lynn Kilgore - Dubuque, IA

“Our condolences to Eldon's family. Eldon was my classmate @ friend. ”
5 of 9 | Posted by: Ed @ Debby Van Nostrand - CO

“Colleen and Family, Our sympathy in your loss. We didn't know Eldon personally but we did observe his determination in attending Mass and RCIA...Read More »
6 of 9 | Posted by: Patty & Tom Hannam - Albia, IA

“i am so sorry for your loss ... he was a wonderful man and meant so much to me and my family i have so many great memories of him and the kids... i...Read More »
7 of 9 | Posted by: jessica - IA

“Beulah, Diane, Colleen and all, I have many wonderful childhood memories with Eldon and recall his giving spirit. My heart goes out to all for...Read More »
8 of 9 | Posted by: Lynda Burchett - Houston, TX

“Colleen & Family, Phil & I were saddened to read of Eldon's death. We hope you will find comfort in knowing that his suffering is over and he is in...Read More »
9 of 9 | Posted by: Linda Lospaluto - Chatsworth, CA


Stained Glass Emblem

Eldon Lee Thomas, age 66 of Albia, passed away peacefully on February 15, 2015, after a lengthy illness.

He was born April 7, 1948, to Maurice and Beulah (Clawson) Thomas in Leon, Iowa. The majority of his childhood was spent in Decatur County, Iowa. He attended school in Central Decatur, graduating with the class of 1966. He later attended Northeast Missouri State University for a year and obtained a degree in geological studies from a college in Rapid City, South Dakota. He met and married Linda Colleen McCombs while in college in 1968, and the celebrated 46 years of marriage this past September.

Eldon was an adventurer, philosopher, artist, cartoonist, story-teller, carpenter, mechanic, handyman, comedian, musician, and lover of nature. He had the strength of a giant and the heart of a poet. His adventurous spirit and love of the land took him through a number of careers and locations including lumberjacking in the mountains of Montana, working for the Soil Conservation Service in Decatur County, writing comic strips and other journalistic activities during the years in Leon, Iowa and New Mexico, college studies in the Black Hills of South Dakota and geophysical surveying in New Mexico, Texas, and California. Probably his most favorite career though, was as a long-haul truck driver during his years in Iowa and again later while the family lived in Texas. Trucking gave him the opportunity to see the nation from coast-to-coast and feed his enthusiasm for history and sociology

Eldon is survived by his wife, Colleen of Albia; his mother, Beulah Clawson of Leon; two daughters, Barbara (Ed) Ford of Aurora, Colorado and Keri Thomas of San Angelo, Texas; two grandchildren, Erin and Alex of Aurora, Colorado; a sister, Diana (Mark) Nigon of Montana; and his mother-in-law, Byrle McCombs. He is also survived and much loved by extended family of nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, and cousins.

The family would like to thank his care-giver Mary Shelker for her friendship and care she gave to Eldon in the last few years, Paula Paris as his personal care visiting nurse, as well as the countless members of the medical staff at Monroe County Hospital and University of Iowa Medical Center

Eldon was a brother in Christ and took great comfort in the fellowship he enjoyed at St. Mary's Church as well as the friendship and support from the Trinity Methodist Church

He was preceded in death by his grandparents; his father, Maurice Thomas; and his father-in-law, George McCombs.

Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, February 21, 2015 at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Albia, with Father Michael E. Volkmer, C.PP.S. officiating. A private family burial will be held at a later date.

Visitation will be held from 3:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m. Friday, February 20, 2015 at the Tharp Funeral Home in Albia, with Eldon's family present from 4:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m. A 4:00 p.m. rosary will be led by the Altar and Rosary society and a wake service will be held at 6:00 p.m.

An open memorial has been established.