Dr. Edwin Michael Thomas of Westwood, New Seabury, and Naples, passed away peacefully on August 29, 2021. He was predeceased by his wife of 72 years, Virginia Dunn Thomas, and son, Gary Dunn Thomas.
He is survived by seven children and their families: Cheryl Ann Ribando and Robert (Charlottesville, VA); Virginia Thomas McDermott and Robert (Marlboro, MA); Jacquelyn Thomas McColgan (Long Beach, CA); Dr. E. Michael Thomas and Rebecca (Abington, MA); Dr. Brian R. Thomas and Nancy (Medfield, MA); Dr. Kevin M. Thomas and Tracy (Cohasset, MA) and Dr. Richard K. Thomas and Patty (Medfield, MA). He enjoyed seeing his 20 grandchildren grow into adulthood and marveled at the antics of his 14 great-grandchildren.
Ed was born in Brookline, MA on January 4, 1922, to Michael Nicholas Thomas and MaryEllen Frances Connelly. He spent his early years in Brookline. While attending Washington Irving Junior High School in Roslindale, Ed met Virginia Dunn in seventh grade (who was to become his wife and mother of his eight children.) He attended Boston Latin School and graduated from Boston English High School in 1941. Ed received a Bachelor of Arts from Boston College and a Doctor of Dental Surgery from Georgetown University School of Dentistry in 1946.
Ed and Ginny reconnected while he was a dental student at Georgetown and married on October 12, 1946. To fulfill his naval commitment, they spent two years at Patuxent River Naval Air Station, MD while he served in the Naval Dental Corps. Ed served in the active naval reserves for 20 years retiring as a Lt. Commander.
Returning to Massachusetts, they opened their first dental office in Roslindale and eventually in Mattapan. The first to work with Ed was his daughter, Jacquelyn, who was a dental hygienist for four years in Mattapan. Ed's group dental practice, Dental Health Services, expanded and was renamed Thomas Family Dental Associates as his sons (Michael, Brian, Kevin, and Rick) also graduated from Georgetown University School of Dentistry.
Ed was involved in leadership roles in civic and business groups. He was past president of the Mattapan, Milton and Westwood Lions Clubs as well as past commander of the American Legion Milton Post #114. He was a member and past president of the group that owned the Braintree Drive-In Theatre and the founder/developer of the group which built a 650-car parking garage in Back Bay Boston. Ed was co-founder and past president of the American Academy of Dental Group Practice and a member of the board of directors for the American Academy of Dental Practice Administration. Ed was recognized as a Fellow in the American Academy of General Dentistry in recognition of his leadership on the importance of quality continuing dental education.
Ed and Ginny enjoyed most of all time with family, especially summers on Cape Cod in Dennis Port and later New Seabury. Ed and Ginny had many great trips in their married life traveling in Europe, South America, Australia, Asia, and Africa. In retirement for 30 years, Ed and Ginny divided their time between Naples and Cape Cod. While in Naples, Ed volunteered weekly for Habitat for Humanity and became quite adept at laying floor tile and insulating windows for over 20 years. He also formed the Boston College Club of Southwest Florida.
Contributions in his memory may be made to the Gary Dunn Thomas Memorial Scholarship Fund, Xaverian Brothers High School, 800 Clapboardtree Street, Westwood, MA 02090.
There will be a private family Mass of Remembrance at St. Timothy's Church in Norwood and interment at Knollwood Memorial Park in Canton beside his wife Virginia and son Gary. Condolences may be shared online at the Holden, Dunn & Lawler Funeral Home Website: www.hdlfuneralhome.net.