Community supporter’s life honoured

Red Cross is mourning the death of long-time supporter and lifelong Millicent resident Thelma Thomas who sadly passed away on May 3, aged 94.

Her late parents Wally and Ruth Willshire gave her a fine example of serving the community.

Mr Willshire served overseas as a volunteer soldier with the 1st A.I.F. during World War I while his wife was made a Member of the British Empire for her devotion to Red Cross and other community groups.

Red Cross Limestone Coast regional services manager David Walshaw said the involvement of Ms Thomas in the international humanitarian organisation dated back to the 1940s.

“The then Miss Thelma Willshire was in Junior Red Cross at Millicent High School and then the VSD during World War 11,” Mr Walshaw said

“She joined the Millicent Red Cross in 1952 and her name was then Mrs Thelma Schumacher.

“For 33 years, she competently held the position of Millicent Red Cross branch secretary.

“Ms Thomas also undertook her training in Disaster Registration.

“She took part in Red Cross Calling each March for around 60 years and this ensured the success and continuity of the door knock.

“For the annual Red Cross Badge Day in Millicent, Ms Thomas was always one of the first to offer her time and energy to sell badges.

“Her attendance at meetings was excellent and she had a welcoming nature.

“When the Millicent Red Cross went into recess over a decade ago, Ms Thomas transferred her membership to the Southend branch.”

Mr Walshaw said the long and dedicated service of Ms Thomas was recognised by Red Cross with a number of medals and other honours.

Twice widowed, Ms Thomas is also mourned by her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren and a wide circle of friends.

A funeral service for Ms Thomas will be held today at St Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Millicent.

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