Morton M. Thomas, a retired Goodyear Tire executive, served as president of the trustees and St. Luke Lutheran Community in North Canton.
The Stow resident, who died April 24 at age 80, joined the library trustees board in 1984 and became president in 1988.
“Mort was an avid reader and frequented our library 3-4 times a week,” Cheryl Nelson, public relations coordinator for what is now the .
“He read both fiction and nonfiction and especially enjoyed food magazines and always browsed the new book section. He loved his library and became friends with many of the staff members.”
Barb Campbell first encountered Thomas when she was answering the phone on her first day on the job at the library in 1987. Not recognizing her voice, Thomas immediately wanted to know who the new staff member was on the other end of the line. He never forgot her name.
Thomas’ interest in libraries extended beyond the local community. He also was a past president of the Ohio Library Trustees Association and the Ohio Library Council. He once served as a delegate to the President’s White House Conference on Libraries and Information Services.
He volunteered countless hours toward the betterment of the library and St. Luke Lutheran Community.
As a board member, Thomas was instrumental in the incorporation of St. Luke Lutheran Home and the Waterford. He served on the board from 1991 through 1996 and was board president from 1992-1996.
He was on the St. Luke Foundation Board from 1991 through 2005, serving as secretary/treasurer from 2000-2003.
“In addition to his service as a board member, he was a volunteer as well,” Kristie Woods, director of development and community relations for the foundation and community said via email.
“He took his commitment to St. Luke Lutheran Community to heart through both is words and his actions. He was generous in many ways - with his time, his talents and his treasure.”
Thomas and his wife of 58 years, Esther, visited many of the residents and delivered tray favors made by members of his church, .
His wife also was on the library’s Friends Board and chaired its Needlework Show with Carol McMillan for many years.
Thomas, who was born in Renovo, PA, graduated from the Pennsylvania State University. He served in both the Army and the Air Force during the Korean Conflict.
He held several management positions with Goodyear Tire before retiring in 1989.
In addition to his wife, survivors include his son, Brian; daughter, Anne Warren; and five grandchildren.
Services were held with arrangements by .
Donations may be made to St. Luke Lutheran Community, 220 Applegrove St. N.E., North Canton, OH 44720.