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Wallace Dale Thomas was born on February 22, 1932 in Bradleyville, Missouri. He was the son of John Edward and Frankie Audrey (Dennis) Thomas. Dale began grade school in Ft. Supply. At the start of World War II Dale's parents went to work for E.I. DuPont, which required moving once or twice a year to different job sites in several states, this meant changing schools mid-term every year for Dale. The last year of the war was spent in Washington state. With his parents both working during the day he was on his own at the age of 13. With a shortage of labor it was easy to find work so he picked several kinds of fruit by the box and hops by the pound. He also drove a small track caterpillar with a sled delivering boxes to apple trees.
After the war his family moved north of Fargo where he graduated from Fargo High School in 1950 and then enrolled at Oklahoma A&M (OSU). Wanting to raise cattle he moved back to the Fargo area but after two years of drought he found he needed a job. He then went to work at Western State Hospital in Ft. Supply as the purchasing agent and stayed for 32 years. During all this time he ran cattle and spent many hours feeding after dark.
After retiring from the state in 1985, he continued to ranch and increase the size of his operation mainly running a mother cow herd. Dale and wife, Vi have been married for 40 years and enjoyed the years they spent together growing their herd.
Dale enjoyed fishing and was well known for his wine making abilities. Dale served on the Woodward Elks Rodeo Committee for 14 years as program director and was honored to be asked to serve as Parade Marshal in 2007.
He is survived by his wife, Vi Thomas of the home; son, Rick Thomas of Los Angeles, California; grandson, Austin Thomas and wife Tonya of Woodward; great-grandsons, Caden Harper; and Dahlyn Thomas both of Woodward; several other family members and many friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents; and one son, J.D. Thomas.
Memorial contributions may be made to the First United Methodist Church with the funeral home accepting the contributions.
Remembrances may be made online at www.billingsfuneralhomewoodward.com
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