Murrel M. Thomas, age 89, of Franklin Drive, Bloomsburg, passed away at his home early Wednesday, June 23, 2021 surrounded by his family.
Born in Buckhorn on Jan. 25, 1932, he wes a son of the late Hiram and Wilda (Pursel) Thomas. He was a lifelong resident of the Bloomsburg area and a 1950 graduate of the former Scott Township High School.
Murrel worked for Merck & Co., Inc at their Cherokee plant in Riverside for 43 years, retiring in 1994.
He proudly served his country by serving in the U. S. Army from 1953-54 as a military policeman and also served in the Army Reserves until being honorably discharged in 1961. He was a member of the 709th Military Police Battalion and enjoyed attending many of their reunions at various locations in the USA.
Murrel was a life member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 804 and a longtime member of American Legion Post 273, both of Bloomsburg. He also was a longtime member of the Espy Fire Co.
He was a member of Oriental Lodge 460, F & AM, Orangeville and Caldwell Consistory, Bloomsburg for over 50 years.
Murrel loved spending time with his family and friends. He especially enjoyed the time he spent with his great-grandchildren, including their many sleep overs at his home and hearing about their activities. He also enjoyed attending many of their sporting events. He loved the outdoors and was an avid hunter. He spent many evenings with his neighbor driving around the countryside looking for wildlife, always coming home with stories about the deer, bear and eagles they encountered on their hour long trips.
Murel and his wife loved to spend their vacations cruising, completing a total of 67 cruises all around the world. His jovial and caring nature was evident in the interactions with all the people he met and the many friends that he made. His ability to make people laugh was one of his best attributes.
He was an avid supporter of local sporting events, attending many games at Bloomsburg University and the local high schools.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a son, Ricky Murrel Thomas, on June 19, 2001; and by five siblings: Lois Snyder, Freda Showalter, Beryl Mordan, Boyd Thomas and Faye Thomas.
Murrel is survived by and will be greatly missed by his wife, the former Leda Mausteller with whom he celebrated their 68th wedding anniversary on June 11, 2021; his daughter, Melanie, wife of James McCollum, Elysburg; granddaughter, Nicole, wife of Mark Haught, Catawissa; four great-grandchildren: Cadyn Lee, Carter Lee, Chloe Lee and Maddox Haught.
Funeral services will be held on Tuesday at 2 p. m. in the Dean W. Kriner, Inc., Funeral Home & Cremation Service, 325 Market St., Bloomsburg, with Rev. Dr. Joel L. Zeiders, pastor of St. Matthew Lutheran Church officiating. Interment will follow in Canby Cemetery, Mt. Pleasant Township. where military honors will be performed by the combined Veterans of Foreign Wars and American Legion Honor Guard.
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