Corning, NY - William "Toby" Thomas passed away at home on Wednesday, February 7th at 72 years of age after recently receiving a kidney from his eldest daughter. Bill was born in Wellsville, NY the son of Ralph and Lillian Thomas. He graduated from Wellsville High School in 1963 and attended both C.C.C. and Mansfield University where he played basketball and football. He will be remembered by his wife of 51 years, Joanne; their four children, Kim Thomas Sprague (Scott), Chris Thomas (Amy), Lindsay Thomas Ruocco (Nick) and Kaley Thomas (fiancé Jeff Yaniak); their 5 grandchildren Sydney, Makenna, Lauren, Caden and Madison; sisters Evelyn Brechbill (Ivan) and Jane Good and brother, Jim Thomas (Jean).
Bill was self-employed for over 35 years, starting two businesses with his wife; Custom Kitchens followed by Cedar St. Market, in Corning, NY. In business and in life there was never a project too large or challenging. He was an extremely friendly person who knew many customers by name and everyone he encountered remembered him. He had a gregarious personality and loved to get to know people.
Something he was very proud of was building a new restaurant in Hammondsport, NY and helping his youngest daughter start a business, the Timber Stone Grill, now accepting reservations for spring. If you knew Toby, he was always promoting business and helping his family ; )
An avid auction attender, both in person and online, Bill frequented anything from produce and plant auctions to boat auctions, eventually accumulating an armada of vessels. He was an amazing father and grandfather who would do anything to assist his family in achieving their dreams and was their biggest cheerleader, even coaching his youngest granddaughter's basketball team with all the kids calling him "grandpa" by the end of the season.
On Saturday, February 17 calling hours will be held from 1:00pm-3:00pm and a Memorial Service will be held at 3:00pm at Carpenters Funeral Home, 14 E Pulteney St, Corning, NY 14830. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Finger Lakes Boating Museum 8231 Pleasant Valley Rd, Hammondsport, NY 14840.