Charles H. “Sonny” Thomas, Postville, Iowa, September 10, 2017

Charles H. “Sonny” Thomas, 82, of Postville, Iowa passed away Sunday, September 10, 2017 at the Good Samaritan Society in Postville, Iowa.

Charles Howard “Sonny” Thomas, the son of Charles Owen and Elizabeth (Moses) Thomas, was born January 17, 1935 in Maryville, Tennessee. At an early age Sonny developed a passion for music and began picking out songs.  He left home at the age of fifteen to pursue a career in music and was a musician his entire life.  He served in the United States Marines for five years and after his discharge toured throughout the country with the Don Gibson Band in night clubs and dance halls.  He met many country stars such as Willie Nelson, Dolly and Stella Parton, Buck Owens and Roy Clark, Glen Campbell, and Johnny Cash.  A fun memory for Sonny was appearing on the Gong Show.  After relocating in California, Sonny met his wife, Bernice Hanson Meyer at a night club.  The couple was united in marriage in 1964 in Torrance, California.  While living in California, Sonny worked as a housepainter during the day and played music six nights a week in the Long Beach and Los Angeles areas.

Sonny and Bernice moved to Postville, Iowa in 1979 so Bernice could be closer to her daughter.  Sonny soon became a member of a local band, “The Buckaroos” and played all over northeast Iowa. He wrote songs and even recorded some albums.  Sonny always felt the music industry was good to him and allowed him to make a pretty good living.  Aside from music, Sonny loved to fish.

Sonny is survived by his stepdaughter, Carol Deering of Postville; four grandchildren, Chuck (Kim) Deering of Postville; Lori Deering of Postville; Stacy (Phil) Tharp of Clive, Iowa; and Lisa (Shannon) Schultz of Teutopolis, Illinois; twelve great grandchildren; one brother, Albert “Ab” Thomas of Richmond, Indiana; one sister, Lorene Williamson of Merritt Island, Florida; and several nieces and nephews.

Sonny was preceded in death by his wife, Bernice; his parents, Owen and Elizabeth Thomas; son-in-law, Charles Deering; two grandsons, Craig and Michael Deering; one brother, Otis Thomas; and two sisters, Merble Clark and Barbara Jean Thomas.

Inurnment will be held in the Postville Cemetery at a later date.

Schutte-Grau Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Postville, Iowa is assisting the family with arrangements.

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