Community remembers former Herald owner

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BY BRADY RHOADES: Family, friends and community leaders remembered former Westminster Herald owner Lloyd Thomas at a service last Friday at Westminster Memorial Park.

A Military Honor followed the ceremony at Thomas’ gravesite.

BY BRADY RHOADES: Family, friends and community leaders remembered former Westminster Herald owner Lloyd Thomas at a service last Friday at Westminster Memorial Park.

A Military Honor followed the ceremony at Thomas’ gravesite.

“My dad loved this community, the city of Westminster, and was continuously pursuing the latest conspiracy theories and news in the city,” said  Lloyd’s son, Walter Thomas, DDS, Colonel USAF, retired. “He taught me by example to love my country.  He taught me by example to do the right thing, even if it will be at some personal cost and it can be at a great personal cost.  I probably paid my dues because I lived by his creed.”

Barbara Aames, former Westminster Chamber of Commerce manager, said Lloyd Thomas’ persistence in pursuing and exposing truth resulted in five city officials going to prison for wrongdoing in the 1960s.  Some of those men were his friends, Aames said, but Thomas lived by his conviction that justice must prevail.

The service, attended by about 60 people, was opened in prayer by Springdale Baptist’s Pastor Gary Drabeck.  Presentation of Colors was conducted by Westminster Trail Life Troop 4673 Trailmen Christopher White, Nickolas White, Samson White, Trevor McCormick, Sean McCormick, Joseph Sturz, Joshua Sturz, and Nikolaus Wojtowicz.

Thomas’ family moved to California in 1934, after getting hit by the Great Depression. Lloyd Thomas was 12 years old. He would remain a resident of Orange County for the rest of his life.

Thomas served in Germany during World War II and was a member of the VFW for more than 60 years.

He started the Herald in 1946. He owned and edited the Herald for more than 70 years, typing copy on an old typewriter well into the 21st Century. He eventually sold the paper and it became the Westminster Herald-Journal.

Thomas, who passed at the age of 95,  is survived by son Walter, who lives in Wisconsin, and daughter Barbara, a resident of Mississippi.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.westminstermemorial.net for the Thomas family.

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