Reynold Thomas, Jr.

reynold thomas, jr.
Reynold Thomas, Jr. died peacefully at home on September 21, 2021. He was born in Burlington, NJ on May 17, 1930, the only child of Reynold Thomas and Alice Scott Thomas. He graduated from St. Bernard’s School in 1946 and attended Rutgers University. Reynold was a proud graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, NY, class of 1952. He earned a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering at Purdue University in 1960 and completed required coursework for a PhD.

Reynold served in the United States Army until 1966. During his first assignment in Pirmasens, Germany, he restored communications capability in Germany and Austria that were destroyed during World War II. During three tours at the US Army Signal School at Fort Monmouth, NJ, Reynold taught tactical communications, computer systems applications and managed the computer operations center to maintain readiness for the Army’s rapid deployment in Europe and the Middle East. In 1960, he did a tour of duty in South Korea, serving as communications advisor to the Korean army and a member of the Joint Observer Team at the DMZ. . He completed his Army career at the Defense Communications Engineering Office in Arlington, VA where he managed the development of technical specifications to upgrade the worldwide Automatic Digital Network. While there, he also worked on the National Communications System Master Plan and defined technical requirements for the General Service Administration digital message switching system for the Federal Telecommunications System.

Following his Army service, he was a systems engineer at Defense Communications Agency and worked for the Secretary of Defense on battle management command and control for the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI).

Reynold retired from US Civil Service in 1975 and finished his career at ANSER Inc. As principal electrical engineer, he provided technical advice to the US Air Force, the SDI Organization and FEMA in areas of general war and continuity of government. He retired in 1985.

When the family moved to Fairfax County in 1963, Reynold immersed himself in community volunteer work. He served as president of the Dunn Loring Woods Civic Association and president of the Fairfax County Federation of Citizens Associations. He also served on the Fairfax County Social Services Board, Fair Housing Board, Community Action Agency Board and Zoning Ordinance Advisory Committee. He was a member of the Washington Metro Area Bus Transportation Advisory Committee. He also served on ad hoc committees for developing goals for the Dunn Loring and Vienna metro corridor. Recognizing the future need to move the County headquarters from Fairfax City, he worked on ad hoc committees that selected the site for the County Administrative Center and developed criteria for the selection of the architectural design firm.

A lifelong Episcopalian, he taught Sunday School and worked with the church youth group for many years.

In 1968, Reynold established the youth soccer organization that became Vienna Youth Soccer in 1974 and was a referee for many years. He was also a referee for NCAA and semi-professional soccer in Virginia, Maryand and DC.

Reynold was predeceased by Nancy Bushnell Thomas in 2014. Married for 62 years, they travelled extensively throughout the United States, Europe and Canada. He is survived by his four children, Leslie T. Eckmann (Scott), Linda W. Thomas, Melissa T. Froede (Ron) and Reynold Thomas III (Kathy) and three grandchildren, Jessica Alice Froede, Scott Thomas Froede and Ann Morgan Eckmann.

A Renaissance man, Reynold was an avid reader and a lifelong student of history. He enjoyed downhill skiing with his children and grandchildren. Reynold collected ephemera, restored clocks and loved to sail his little boat.

Arrangements are being handled by Money & King Funeral Home, Inc. in Vienna, VA. A private graveside service will be held at a later date. The family requests that donations in his memory be made to a charity of your choice. No flowers please.

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