Leona Jane Thomas, 77, of Cannon Ball, ND, passed away peacefully Thursday, August 5, 2021, in her beautiful home.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 1:00 PM on Tuesday, August 10, 2021, at Spirit of Life Catholic Church, Mandan, ND with Msgr. Chad Gion as celebrant. Burial will be at Mandan Union Cemetery.
Visitation will be held Monday, August 9, 2021 from 5:00-7:00 PM at Weigel Funeral Home, Mandan, with a Rosary/Parish Vigil at 7:00 PM. Visitation will continue at the church one hour prior to the service on Tuesday.
Leona Jane Thomas was a gift to Valentine and Rose Hoffman on July 5, 1944. Work became a passion of hers from a young age when she began babysitting her neighbors 12 children. Her husband of 60 years, Paul William Thomas, fell in love with her the first time he saw her. At the young age of 17, he married her and whisked the beautiful city girl to his farm in Cannon Ball, ND. She continued her passion of hard work as a farm wife. She learned to milk cows, raise pigs, chickens and many other animals including four children, Laurie, Paula, Jack, and Frank. She and her husband, Paul, made a small farm on the prairie with no running water and heat from a wood burning stove into a successful farm/ranch on the prairie. Their children grew and left the home leaving Leona lonely without them. She went on to be a bartender at the Solen Bar. Customers loved her and she became friends with them by lending a listening ear and offering support and advice. After the bar burnt down, she went to work as a postmaster for the Cannon Ball Post Office. She made sure people got their mail on time, as well as the newspaper.
Leona was always available to help care for her grandchildren. They all credit and respect her for helping become the great kids they are today. Prairie Knights Casino was blessed to hire her in 1993 where she worked until her illness no longer allowed her to. Her coworkers became family and she loved that they all called her “grandma.” The get-well cards she received from them and the words written to her surprised her. She was a very humble person and did not know how much people loved and respected her. She will always be remembered and cherished by everyone who met her.
Leona will be deeply missed by her husband, Paul Thomas; children, Paula (Steve) Bement, Jack Thomas, Frank (Janelle) Thomas; numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren; brother, Phil (Carolee) Hoffman.
Leona was preceded in death by her daughter, Laurie; granddaughter, Little Laura Lee; grandchildren, Jovaughn, Sage; special great-grandson, Austan.
Memorial donations can be made to Hospice of the Red River Valley 1701 38th Street South Suite 101, Fargo, ND, 58103. If not for their loving care, Leona would not have been able to pass away peacefully in her home on the prairie.