2017-05-17 / Obituaries


RAYMONDVILLE - Claudette Thomas, 75, passed away Saturday, May 13, 2017 at Valley Baptist Medical Center.

Claudette was born in Brownwood, Texas on May 22, 1941. She was involved in ranching her entire life. Claudette attended Texas Tech University and got her masters at Kansas State University in Journalism. She met and shortly thereafter married Billy Thomas who would become the love of her life. They were married for 45 years until his death in 2012. They spent their married life on the ranch north of Raymondville and together Claudette and Billy built one of the largest and most successful purebred cattle operations in the nation. Their love for the Charolais breed was undeniable. She served on the activities committee of the American International Charolais Association for many years. Claudette, or more affectionately known as “Gee”, had a love for the youth of the community. She served many years on the Board of the Willacy County Livestock Show. She served on countless committees and local boards. She was a member of Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church in Raymondville.

Claudette was a friend to so many. She cherished her family and was there to support them. Whether it be at sporting events or sitting in the stands at livestock shows Gee was always there. For those of you who knew her, you know that she was never afraid to voice her opinion. That is why so many held her in such high regard. She will be missed by us all. The comforting thing is knowing that she and Billy are together again and they are sitting there in heaven smoking a cigarette, having a drink, and looking down on us amazed at what they left behind.

She is survived by her son and daughter-in-law Mitch and Linda Thomas; daughter and son-in-law Tonnyre and David Joe; Grandchildren Morgan Ashley Thomas, Lauren Michelle Thomas, Logan Tonnyre Thomas, Royse William Thomas Joe, and Claudette Elizabeth Joe; brother and sister-in-law Bill and Jessica McInnis. Claudette is preceded in death by her parents Claude and Lillie Mae McInnis and her beloved husband Billy.

A rosary was recited by Aurora Pedraza on Monday, May 15, 2017 at 7:30 pm at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church in Raymondville. The family was available to receive friends at the church at 5:30 pm. A Catholic mass was officiated by Father Gabriel on Tuesday, May 16, 2017 at 10:00 am at Our Lady of Guadalupe, 693 N. 3rd, Raymondville, Texas. Procession and burial was at the Thomas Family Cemetery.

Honorary pallbearers were Dr. Geoff Drake and Dr. George Cantu. Pallbearers were Ariel Rebeles, Josh Klostermann, Dr. Tobin Pennington, Blayne Rowland, Sigifredo Cruz, and Juan Posas Jr. In lieu of flowers, please make charitable contributions to The Billy and Claudette Thomas Memorial Scholarship Fund c/o The Willacy County Fair at P.O. Box 717 Raymondville, TX 78580.

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to Duddlesten Funeral Home, 604 W. Hidalgo Ave., Raymondville, Texas.

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