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Celebrating the Life of Gail L. Thomas

Bryn Mawr - Skyway lost an advocate on Wednesday, October 28, 2020 when Gail Thomas transitioned from this earthly life.

Gail was born to Arthur and Nellie Spencer in Los Angeles in 1952 and grew up in Compton, California. She attended high school at St. Mary’s Academy in Inglewood, California and graduated in 1969 with academic awards and scholarships. While in high school, she was a member of the debate team. She attended the University of California, Santa Barbara for two years and then transferred to the University of Washington where she received both her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Speech Pathology. She also pledged Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority during her time at UW. In addition, Gail completed graduate-level coursework in Transformative Spirituality at Seattle University.

She worked for Seattle Public Schools for 37 years as a Speech-Language Pathologist serving at the elementary, middle school, and high school levels. Gail was passionate about her work and thoroughly enjoyed her career working with youth. A former school administrator described her as a creative educator.

Gail was a graduate of the Leadership Tomorrow program in Seattle, which helped her develop skills in civic leadership and engagement. She later served on the board of directors for The ARC of King County, which serves the needs of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

She was a member of St. Therese Catholic church in the Madrona neighborhood for over 30 years and was a member of the choir. She also served as a lay minister. After her retirement from Seattle Public Schools in 2015, Gail began attending Bryn Mawr United Methodist Church, where she served as Community Liaison for approximately 3 years. In this role, Gail facilitated the formation of partnerships between the church community and the Bryn Mawr-Skyway neighborhood.

In her free time, she enjoyed domestic and international travel, smooth jazz, and spending time with family on holidays. She appreciated the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest and enjoyed seeing Bald Eagles and Orcas.

She was preceded in death by her parents Arthur and Nellie Spencer. Gail is survived by her husband (Jesse), daughter (Marissa), granddaughter (Kaliyah), and sister (Susan). She will be sorely missed by a host of family, friends, and former students.

Memorial service arrangements are pending.

1 Comment

A life well lived. I am honored to have developed a friendship and professional relationship with Gail. When we connected, there were long, thoughtful conversations, many that centered around the SSD students and the families that we served. Genealogy became an added interest for us. I miss you, but hold on to fond memories.



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