James Stewart “Coach” Thomason, 78, of Kingsland passed away in the early hours of Friday, Jan. 4, 2019, at Hospice of the Golden Isles in Brunswick.
Mr. Thomason was the oldest son born to Stewart Turner and Bessie Lee Hamilton Thomason in Anniston, Ala. He spent his elementary and high school years in Bremen, graduating in 1959. Mr. Thomason enjoyed multiple sports throughout his life paving the way for his life’s work as a high school coach which included football, baseball and even a state championship golf team (a sport he never played).
He valued his opportunities for higher education having held a bachelor’s degree from Auburn University, a master’s degree from the University of Southern Mississippi and with advanced course work from Valdosta State and Georgia Southern universities. While completing his master’s degree at USM, he was privileged to coach freshman football and recruit football players from high schools throughout the southeast. “Coach” became his name of reference for the rest of his life. He never tired of coaching and teaching mathematics at Lakeside and Peachtree high schools in Atlanta and Adel and Camden county high schools in south Georgia.
Coach Thomason was a 40-year resident of Camden County. He was an active member of St. Marys United Methodist Church for 35 years, serving on various committees. Coach was dedicated to serving others as evidenced by his involvement in the Kingsland Lions Club, Marshes of Glynn Sons of the American Revolution (SAR) and Bryan-Lang Historical Library.
His God-given ministry took the form of cooking for the elderly, sick and bereaved in his backyard kitchen. Coach was a tireless gardener sharing his bounty with the community. He created Coach’s Lunch Bunch to help gentlemen his age enjoy fellowship at local restaurants. Coach was a multi-talented individual. His greatest achievement has been researching a family history initiated by his mother to which he added five years worth of publications to share with his family and libraries throughout the south.
He was preceded in death by his parents and is survived by his devoted wife of 46 years, Jo Wynne Thomason; sons, James Wynne “Jim” Thomason of Ocean Springs, Miss., Stewart Allen Thomason (Sara) of Isle of Palms, S.C.; and daughter, Sue Ellen Thomason Cheek (Shawn) of Woodstock. Also left to cherish his memory are grandchildren, Reece, Dean and Phoebe Thomason, Leah, Matthew and Gehrig Cheek; twin sister, Sue Thomason of LaGrange; brothers, Robert Jay Thomason and Hamilton Lee Thomason (Jeani) of Bremen; and three nieces and three nephews.
Funeral services for Coach will be at 4 p.m. Monday, Jan. 7, at St. Marys United Methodist Church and officiated by Rev. Roy White. Family visitation will precede the service from 2 to 4 p.m. in the church social hall. Active pallbearers were Max Duke, Calvin Lang, Arizona Perkins, Leon Frazier, Art Turner and Jay Lassiter. Honorary pallbearers were the members of Coach’s Lunch Bunch, Marshes of Glynn SAR, Bob Campbell, Leon Cochran, Jay Lassiter, William Lassiter, Daniel Simpson, Jim Stein, Danny Sikes, Steve Conner, Edward Bruce, Wayne Peeples, Keith Ellis and Mark Durham.
The family suggests memorial contributions be made to Hospice of the Golden Isles or Bryan-Lang Historical Library in Woodbine.
Allison Memorial Chapel and Funeral Home in St Marys and Hightower Funeral Home in Bremen were entrusted with Coach Thomason’s arrangements.