Forest Park Cemetery in Houston was in the backyard of the Spraggins house... and made a great place to hide Easter eggs.

The Thomas line is the big mystery for my family.  Mellie Sparks Thomas - Parrot- Parnell (on the far left) married a "Sam Thomas" in Miller County, Arkansas in 1903. She gave him three children before he disappeared forever. I believe his actual name was Thomas Jefferson Thomas Jr... The children were Harvey, Bertha and Louis Nolan aka "Sam" Thomas.

Bertha Thomas Spraggins, sitting next to Mellie in the group above, was her middle child and became the family rock over the years. After marrying Shelby Spraggins (standing with white shirt and pants and tie) and moving to texas, they provided everybody the love and stability they never had.
Grandma Mellie with Sam's youngest boy, Bobby Thomas. That's his sister Regina respectfully standing in the background.

The two sons, Harvey and Louis aka "Sam," Thomas brought mostly mystery and heartbreak to our lives. The little girl with the Easter basket, Sam's daughter Regina Thomas, was one of the casualties, and was eventually adopted out to her Aunt Jean (far right in the group photo, Mellie's fourth child, by a different marriage). Still, the relative prosperity and wholesome environment provided by the Spraggins is reflected in daughter Shirley Spraggin's genuine smile. And Shelby her father, could whip his weight in wildcats!

Louis Nolan "Sam" Thomas, his wife Montrey and daughter Regina. They also had two sons, Gary and Bobby, before giving up on their union. Sam's sister Bertha adopted Gary, and sister Jean adopted Regina. Montrey kept Bobby and raised him in Arkansas.
Much later, after years of wandering, Sam Thomas was found murdered in Houston, Texas.
 Harvey Thomas
Brother Harvey had not been heard from in twenty years. Harvey Thomas had married though, and fathered a son, Danny Thomas, who grew up in Chicago.
Ann and Dannie Thomas
Regina Thomas
Regina Thomas married a man by the name of Carlson, but her husband died tragically. She never remarried. 
Beautiful Regina Thomas Carlson became a stewardess for Braniff Airlines.
Gary Thomas married Mary, his Milby High School sweetheart and they had two daughters, Sharae and Tanya.
Gary Thomas poses on a pony at Aunt Bertha's house. 

Gary became a very successful industrial paint contractor, the founder and manager of Century Coatings in northwest Houston. He learned his trade at F. W. Gartner Co. in Houston and eventually went out on his own. He did very well, and for a time was buying all kinds of planes, yachts and automobiles, and travelling all around the world. Sadly, over the years he contracted silicosis, which eventually took him.
We called him "Butch."  Raised by my Spraggins grandparents, Gary Thomas was more like a brother to us.
Bobby Thomas also died tragically, of an incurable disease.
Jean Parrot Reese, Bertha's half-sister who raised Regina Thomas, never had any children of her own. She also had a service station which, between the two sisters, had the gasoline business tied up on Lawndale Avenue.  Jean truly loved animals... and worried over all the stray dogs, cats, and wild birds and even the bees in the neighborhood.

We have very little knowledge about the Thomas clan, and I am always researching them... trying to find out who they were and where they were from...
[I apologize for the gaps and inaccuracies in the Thomas section. Divorce, disease, and tragedy made this family story hard to memorialize. This part of my family was gently obscured for most of my life, and there are no Thomas family records per se'. If you have better information, spellings, etc. it would be welcome.]

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