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Life Member Richard "Dick" Thomas Answers His Last Alarm - Millville Volunteer Fire Company
Friday, April 13, 2012

The Millville Volunteer Fire Company is saddened to announce the passing of Life Member Richard "Dick " Thomas who answered his last alarm on Friday, April 13, 2012 at the age of 81. Dick was born in Takoma Park, MD son of the late, Royle and Florence (Koch) Thomas, and was currently residing in Millville. He is survived by his loving wife of 60 years, Julia Augusta (Lanier) Thomas; two sons, Richard C. Thomas and his wife Lisa of Frankford, DE; William J. Thomas and his wife Diane of Seaford, DE; daughter, Louise A. Keller and her husband Richard of Elkridge, MD; five grandchildren and one great grandson; and his faithful dog Tinker Belle. Dick began his career in the fire service in 1945 as a volunteer Junior Firefighter at College Park, MD and then moved up to the status of firefighter when he became of age. In the early 50's Dick became a paid firefighter with the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Fire Company. After getting married, Dick made a career change and started working for the Maryland Fire Underwriters Bureau. In 1968 he started the business Columbia Fire Services, installing commercial hood systems, along with fire extinguisher sales and service. During this time Dick joined the Ellicott City Fire Department and served on the Board of Directors. At the time of his passing, Dick had been a Board of Director for the Ellicott City Fire Department for 30 plus years. Dick sold his Columbia Fire Services business in 1983 and moved his family to Millville, DE. After moving to Millville, Dick began his Columbia Fire Systems business of installing automatic fire sprinkler systems. With Dick's continuing love of the fire service, he was once again bitten by the bug and joined the Millville Volunteer Fire Company. During Dick's 28 years with Millville, he served on the Rescue Squad as a member, as well as being the Rescue Captain for 2 years; served as an ambulance attendant, and held the position of Ambulance Lieutenant for 2 years; and was one of the Company's Chaplains. The family is also proud to note that Dick had an EMT certification in both Maryland and Delaware, and in 1993 he became certified as a National Registered Emergency Medical Technician. In 2011 Dick started another business, A & D Fire, LLC, which involved the designing of residential sprinkler systems. Dick was also a long-time consultant for the design and installation of fire systems. His civic duty extended beyond the fire service as Dick was a member of the Millville Town Council and had served as the treasurer of the Council. A funeral service will be noon, Friday, April 20th, at Mariner's Bethel United Methodist Church, 81 Central Avenue, Ocean View, where friends and family may call after 10:00 a.m. Interment will be in the adjoining church cemetery. I lieu flowers the family suggests memorial donations in Richard's memory to Mariner's Bethel U.M. Church, 81 Central Ave, Ocean View, DE. 19970 or Millville Volunteer Fire Co, P.O. Box 64, Millville, DE. 19970. Online condolence may be sent by visiting www.melsonfuneralservices.com.

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