Jerry Thomas, Adventist Author of Nearly 60 Books, Passes to His Rest

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Jerry Thomas, Adventist Author of Nearly 60 Books, Passes to His Rest

Jerry D. Thomas; photo provided by Pacific Press Publishing Association

Jerry D. Thomas, writer of nearly 60 books for children and adults, passed away on Friday, March 15, 2019, from complications from a blood clot. His works include the best sellers Messiah, Blessings, and A Thoughtful Hour. Thomas also wrote and created popular series such as Detective Zack, Great Stories for Kids, and Shoebox Kids. He was 59.

“His ability to convey spiritual topics in precise, easy-to-understand language touched many lives,” said Miguel Valdivia, vice president of Product Development for Pacific Press Publishing Association in Idaho.

Before coming to Pacific Press, Thomas served as a Bible teacher at Highland View Academy in Hagerstown, Maryland. Colleagues, friends, and former students have expressed sadness at his passing on social media. Many have also shared their appreciation for “PT” (Pastor Thomas) and his compassion, humor, and insightfulness during his years at HVA.

“I will always remember PT as an important part of my adolescence. He was a great teacher and a truly wonderful human being,” said HVA alumnus David Fales.

Sandra Skeggs Ringer, also a former student, said, “He was my high school class sponsor before becoming famous. I babysat his children on numerous occasions. As a parent, my children read his books and met PT at Oshkosh [Wisconsin]. As an adult, I have been blessed by his book Messiah.”

Thomas started working at Pacific Press on April 4, 1991, as an associate book editor; later on he became the editor in charge of the trade books team. During those years, Thomas developed what perhaps remains his best-known work, the Detective Zack set, an adventure mystery series for young readers that revealed Bible truth in a captivating narrative.

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