Obituary for THOMAS

Published in the Albuquerque Journal on Saturday June 24, 2006

ROY Dr. Roy Thomas was a professor at the University of New Mexico's Department of Physics and Astronomy from 1948 to 1980. He passed away on March 18, 2005. Roy was born in Prince Rupert, British Columbia, Canada on August 8, 1914 and he proudly maintained Canadian citizenship throughout his lifetime. His parents, who immigrated to Alberta, Canada from the Ukraine, were Nicolas and Kate Tomashewski. His father worked for the Canadian National Railroad. Roy graduated from Prince Rupert public schools and subsequently enrolled at the University of Alberta, where he received a B. S. in physics in 1938, receiving the Governor General's Gold Medal for attaining the highest scholastic average in his graduating class. He subsequently attended the University of California at Berkeley, on teaching fellowships, from 1938-1942, where he met his future wife, Evelyn. He obtained his Ph.D. in physics in Theoretical Physics in 1942. While at the University of California, he was a student of Professor J. Robert Oppenheimer. Roy's scholastic activities with Professor Oppenheimer are documented in the recently published book J. Robert Oppenheimer and the American Century (David C. Cassidy, Pi Press, New York, 2005). Roy became an instructor at Washington University, St. Louis, from 1942-1946, where part of his responsibilities included supervision of lecturers to Army and Air Force trainees. From 1946-1948, he was assistant professor of physics at St. Louis University. While at the University of New Mexico, Roy also gave numerous lectures and classes to other organizations in the state, including the Los Alamos Graduate Center, Kirtland Air Force Base, Sandia Corporation, and Highlands University. He was a colleague of the recently-deceased, former department chairman, Dr. Victor H. Regener. Roy was preceded in death by his wife, Evelyn and sister, Julia. He is survived by his brother, Victor; his daughter, Audrey; his four sons, Willard, Howard, Edward, and Vincent; and six granddaughters, Kari, Katie, Kelsey, Kira, Karin, and Kaela.

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