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Celebration of Life


gaye thomas



August 09, 1939 - September 08, 2020


Martha Thomas

Martha (Gaye) Boren Thomas, 81 of Wilmington, passed away Tuesday, September 8, 2020, at Lower Cape Fear LifeCare Center.

Gaye was born on August 9, 1939 in Greensboro, NC, daughter of the late Benjamin Clark Boren and Francis Wheeler Boren. She grew up in Siler City, NC where she completed high school and went on to graduate from WC (UNC Greensboro) and later earned a master’s degree from Fayetteville State. She taught for 31 years and in 1999 received the NC Teacher of the Year award presented by the NC Association for the Gifted and Talented for 5 years of teaching. She taught in Pittsboro, Siler City, Dunn, Angier and Wilmington, NC all while raising 3 fine children.

Raised in the Methodist church, Gaye was baptized in the Baptist church after marriage and was a dedicated member working in many areas of the church. It was her sincere desire to become a deacon in the church, a goal she accomplished.

She will be remembered for her beautiful smile, her kind and generous spirit, her generosity and her love of life. Her love for her children, grandchildren, family, and spending time with them was when she was happiest.  

The family sincerely thanks all her many friends in Wilmington and other areas of the US and all the caregivers involved in her last years.

Gaye is survived by her husband of 60 years, Jesse James (Jimmy) Thomas; three children, Jesse James (Jim) Thomas III (Rose), Andrea Thomas Turner (Fred), and Stephen Blair Thomas; three grandchildren, Amelia Rose Thomas, Jesse Hayes Thomas, and Heather Nicole Genna; sister, Ada Jo Burke; sister-in-law, Camellia Berglund (Lyle); and brother-in-law, Rowland Thomas (Diane).

A Celebration of Life service will be held outside at the First Baptist Church Activities Center located at 1939 Independence Boulevard in Wilmington NC on Friday, September 11, 2020 at 11:00 am. Please bring a chair for your comfort as only seating will be offered for the family. In case of bad weather, the service will be moved to the First Baptist Church gym at the activity center, socially distancing.

The family asks in lieu of flowers a please send a contribution to the First Baptist Church of Wilmington, NC at 411 Market Street, Wilmington, NC, 24801.

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