Cover photo for Mitzi Kessel Thomas's Obituary
Mitzi Kessel Thomas Profile Photo

Mitzi Kessel Thomas

March 3, 1933 — June 18, 2023

Silas Creek Chapel

Mitzi Kessel Thomas


Mitzi Kessel Thomas, most recently of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, died at Kate B. Reynolds Hospice Home on the morning of June 18, 2023, at the age of 90.

Throughout her life, Mitzi exemplified unwavering resiliency and admirable joie de vivre. She was a most loving and dedicated wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, aunt, sister, friend, neighbor, and global citizen. Mitzi was twice employed as a newspaper columnist, recognizing her gifts as a creative wordsmith, editor, and attentive listener.

Born on March 3, 1933 to Philip and Maudiefrank (Lawrence) Kessel, Mitzi spent her youth in El Paso, Texas with brothers Julian and Bobby Kessel. She graduated from Austin High School and attended Texas Western College. Mitzi caught the eye and heart of West Point cadet William N. Thomas in 1951, they married and together set out on a remarkable journey around the world for 60 years until his death in 2011. Truly a complementary pair, they built a life of military, government, and community service, creating homes for their growing family in Oklahoma, Iowa, Kansas, Texas, Iowa, Indiana, West Point, NY, Germany, the Philippines, Tunisia, and the D.C. area before retiring in Greenville, Texas and later in Louisville, KY. In every place, Mitzi embraced her community and gave of herself with tireless dedication to numerous organizations at every level, including, Altar Guild, mothers in need, schools, government relations, diplomatic communities, civic clubs, and the symphony.

Her can-do spirit, keen mind, sense of adventure, kindness, fun-loving wit, and strong faith will be greatly missed by her family and friends -- those from long ago to those of recent days.

She will be fondly remembered for her humor, inclusive nature, ability to entertain, love for words and word games, card games, her style, and good taste - ever the hostess, diplomat, and confidant.

Mitzi is survived by daughters Terri Thomas Connolly (Bob), Debbi Thomas (Bob Appleman), Suzi Thomas DiMauro (Damon), Viki Thomas McCool (Brian), grandchildren Kristen, Katrina, Kelley, Megan, Michael, Katy, Dan, Gabriel, Nathanaël, Eli, Ean, Ema, their spouses Tim, Matt, Nick, Dryw, Kyle, Aurélie, Skyler, Radha, Grace, and great-grandchildren Landon, Ethan, Owen, Anika, William, Charlotte, Rhys, Elly, Hattie, Tate, Charlie, and Tommy- her pride and joy, all.

The family extends its deep gratitude to the teams at Trellis Supportive Care, Kate B. Reynolds Hospice Home, Bayada Home Health Care, Dr. Mark Corbett and Dr. Jennifer Gabbard for their compassionate and excellent care.

A service will be held at 11 :00 am, Monday, June 26th, at St. Timothy's Episcopal Church, 2575 Parkway Drive, Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

In honor of our mother's history of service and care for others, please consider volunteering or donating to an organization of your choice.

Online condolences may be made at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Mitzi Kessel Thomas, please visit our flower store.


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