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The Life & Legacy of James "Dudie" Thomas

Updated: Feb 16, 2021

  • James Thomas, also known as James L. (Dudie) or "Dudie Thomas" lives to be 84

  • Born: February 21, 1937

  • Returned Home: Sept. 22, 2010

  • Funeral Services were held at Shiloh M.B.C. Plano, Tx

  • Lived in Plano, Texas in the historic Douglass Community

  • Father of James Thomas III

  • Father of Pat Thomas

  • Son of James Lawrence Thomas (named after Thomas Elementary)

James "Dudie" Thomas was a well-known pillar of the community. He was a friend to all people and a person that people could trust. His father; James "Dudie" Thomas left a legacy of support and reliability which was instilled in Dudie. The Thomas family is known for their legacy of helping Plano become a community that helps one another.

His Legacy:

The patriarch of one of Plano's most beloved families has passed away from us but in his wake, he left behind fond and indelible memories that will sustain his family and friends forever.

Dudie and his beloved wife Hallie (a friend and second Mom to my siblings and me) were a couple touched by the hands of God--two loving, kind and steady folks that those in Plano could always count on.

Dudie was an ever-present supporter and figure of all things Plano, particularly high school athletics in which his sons James III (Little Dudie) and Pat excelled. Words of encouragement and affectionate teases were always part of Dudie's persona and will be greatly missed.

I saw Dudie and his children, Sharon, Little Dudie, Pat, Fred, and some of his grandchildren at the annual Plano Hall of Honor celebration two years ago. I was happy to hold his hand and have a hug.

I know his family walked beside him when he left this world. My sympathy, prayers, and love go out to all of you. I know that Hallie, with her angelic voice, is singing hymns for him now.

There is one consolation that he has left for us all: for now, there will be a star up above with an extra twinkle--the sparkling twinkle from Dudie's eyes that all who loved him knew so well.

Ginny Apple


Some of my fondest memories of Plano always include the Thomas and Williams, families. Pat and I felt privileged to have them as friends. They helped make Plano the great city that it is. My heartfelt condolences go out to those remaining.

Jackie Paddock


I was greatly saddened by the news of Dudie's passing. He was a gracious, kind, and jovial man. Plano is lucky to have had the privilege of Dudie choosing to live his life in our "little town". The various Thomas families are a cornerstone of Plano. In all their various endeavors they touched more lives than most of the old Planoites. I was blessed that Dudie, "Baby" Dudie, Patrick, Sharon, and Freddie were willing to share Hallie with me. She was a strong and wonderful woman and having Dudie standing beside her gave her the strength she always shared with me. For those of us left behind, we must rejoice in the fact that Hallie is alone no longer. I am sure she and Dudie will happily reunite and watch down upon their children with great pride. It gives me peace to know that they shall live an even greater life than the earthly one from which they have passed. I send my love and happy memories to all of Dudie's family. May you always remember how very lucky you were to have him with you for so long.

Nancy Apple

Exhibit Activity & Discussion:

  1. What can we tell about Dudie's legacy?

  2. What characteristics did he instill in his children and community?

  3. Why was he referred to as "Dudie" instead of James?

  4. What are the names of his children?

  5. What is a "Planoite"?


James Thomas Jr III interview 2021

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