In Memory of

Steven

Thomas

Obituary for Steven Thomas

I have the honour of reintroducing you to Steven Anthony Thomas—better known to many as “Mas Steve.”

Born June 15, 1934, in Heatsfield, Manchester, Jamaica. Son of Dorcas Pitter and Stanford (Bosley) Thomas; brother of 5, living are Selvyn, Alvin, and Sonny; husband to Calmelena Thomas; father to Cutie and Mike; 4 grandchildren, Taj, Ashlee, Melissa, and Brittany; father-in-law to Lloyd and Peaches; Brother in law to June, Joy, Thelma, Teza, Duke, Earl, Cecil, and les; grand nieces and nephews, Yandy, Suzette, Sophia, Nashika, Lesley Ann, Punchun, likkle Steve, Rickman, FatsD, Orville, Debbie and a myriad of others; 2 great grand dogs, Mylo and Kingston, and friend and storyteller to all else who meet him. We are here today to remember the life and legacy he left on earth. I could go on and reminisce about all the stories Grandpa was either part of or told, and for those who knew Grandpa, you understand how long those stories could be. Grandpa was above all else a family man, followed very closely by storyteller. Family man is a term not appreciated nearly enough these days. Grandpa, though, was the epitome of how great and unselfish it is to put those in your family first.

Grandpa never asked for much and he never took life for granted. He told us stories about his many hats in life. He worked as a butcher, and in public works where he quickly learned that driving a truck was not as easy as walking from Lake Park to 45th street. He enjoyed taking long walks and sitting outside to enjoy the cool breeze. Not only was he a family man, but also a protector. He would lock up the house and grill every night by 6pm sharp and don’t even think of looking for the keys because they were right beside him and the machete was not too far away either. He would also protect all of us from a whole heap of beatings. He was also a healer and didn't know it. When cutie was a little girl, she would feel ill and all he had to do was touch her head and say “wahmp bend up”, rub her down with alcohol and she would instantly feel better. In his recent illness, when he could barely move, Cutie was sick in bed and he walked to her room with olive oil to rub her and pray over her. During his later years, Cutie was able to return the blessings and cared for him until his last days. If you mentioned that you liked anything, you better believe that by the end of the day the fridge would be filled with it. When Mike was a young boy attending school, he would give him enough money to buy bully beef and bread for himself and about six of his friends. I'm happy he lived long enough for us to return the favor. He also took pride in the way he dressed. He dropped his clothes off at the dry cleaners weekly. The seam in his pants were so sharp that it could cut you and dress shoes were polished to perfection. Let’s not forget his many caps and handkerchiefs and if you were ever in need of a pen, one was always in his perfectly ironed shirt pocket.

Grandpa was filled with love. Out of all the stories about his life though, my favourite will always be the one about how he met my grandmother. He married Calmelena on September 18, 1976 in Clarendon, Jamaica. 47 blissful years of matrimony. When he was in the hospital, his main concern was always “How is Calmel? Or Make sure Calmel is alright”. This is a true example of for better or for worse. They have stood the test of time. In his last days, he left a message to her stating that she must keep the faith, keep the lord first, and enjoy the rest of her life.

Grandpa was a lover of all, down to the stray dogs on the street. If you were in need of anything and he had it, you would have it. As we put my grandfather to rest, we bury only his body. His spirit, his soul, his amazing ability to give is still with it. To say that I am lucky to be one of his grandchildren is an understatement. Growing up, us grandchildren always looked forward to spending time with him, especially when we had a loose tooth, he was a master at removing them without pain. It is a blessing that I am truly grateful for and will be for the rest of my life. Early Friday morning March 8th 2024, our beloved “Mas Steve” passed away peacefully with his family by his side. During his last days he said “I am 89 years old and if I were to pass off now, good luck to all of you and God bless you.” It is a challenge to put into words the many things that we would like to say about him. Thank you for your love, Grandpa. As you would say, “yeah man, mi alright man” you can now rest in eternal peace.