Barbara Jean Thomas (Ford) was born in Tupelo, Mississippi to Robert Ford and Bessie Mae Ford (Lomax) on October 12, 1950. She was raised in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She obtained her GED from Parkland College and later obtained her CNA certification, providing in home healthcare to many throughout her life.
She worked at Kraft General Foods as a line operator in the Oil and Paste department for 34 years, retiring in 2009. She shared her life with long-time companion, Saul Gloria before his passing in 1997. Barbara is remembered for her kind heart, being a mother figure to many and welcoming anyone at her table for a home-cooked meal with lots of laughter. She was strong in her faith and at peace knowing she would eventually go home to be with the Lord. During her life she raised three boys each of which held a special place in her heart. She worked tirelessly to maintain the family home on Romine for her boys until their adulthood. Barbara enjoyed reading, cooking, watching movies, traveling, gambling, a great game of Pokeno, spending time with her grandchildren, and attending services at Mount Olive Baptist Church. She passed away on Wednesday, September 2nd at the age of 69.
Barbara was preceded in death by her parents, one son, Henry Lee Thomas, of Houston, Texas, daughter-in-law, Amy Thomas (Govert) of Savoy, IL, nephew, Derrick Ford of Fort Wayne, Indiana, and brother, Robert Ford, of Champaign, IL. She is survived by a sister, Arlinthia White (Ford), two sons, Orlando (Liza) of Champaign, Illinois and Jason (Sarah) of Savoy, Illinois and 5 grandchildren: Jaden, Jackson, Alicia, Laila and Madison. Also, sharing in Barbara’s legacy are three special nieces, Gena Ford, ShaDonna Doughty, and Kanetha Taylor, along with 15 great nieces and nephews.
A private family service will be held at Woodlawn Cemetery, where a memorial headstone will be placed next to her son, Henry.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in Barbara’s name to Mt. Olive Missionary Baptist Church, 808 East Bradley Ave., Champaign, IL 61820.
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Mt. Olive Missionary Baptist Church
808 E. Bradley Avenue, Champaign IL 61820