Cover photo for LaDonna Mae Thomas's Obituary
LaDonna Mae Thomas Profile Photo
1933 LaDonna 2023

LaDonna Mae Thomas

July 7, 1933 — October 14, 2023

Newcastle, Nebraska


LaDonna Mae (Benedict) Thomas, 90, of Newcastle, NE. passed away peacefully Saturday, October 14, 2023 at Sanford Hospital in Vermillion, South Dakota.  A Memorial Service will be at 2:00 p.m. Thursday, October 19, 2023 at the Congregational United Church of Christ in Newcastle, Nebraska with a private family burial in the Newcastle Cemetery to follow.  Visitation, with the family present, will be one hour prior to services at the church.  Mohr Funeral Home of Ponca, Nebraska is assisting the family.  Online condolences may be offered at

     LaDonna was born to Melvin (“Seeds”) and Evelynn (Farnham) Benedict in Newcastle, NE.on July 7, 1933.  LaDonna graduated Newcastle High School in 1951. She then attended Wayne State Teacher College in Wayne, Ne.  She married Verlyn Thomas on Sept. 27, 1953 in the Congregational Church in Newcastle. They had 2 daughters, Lori & Leanne.

     LaDonna taught school near Maskell, NE. where she met Verlyn.  After they married, they moved to Sioux City, IA.  In 1955 they moved to Denver, CO. where LaDonna worked in a bank. In 1962 they moved back to Newcastle to raise the girls.  LaDonna worked at the bank in Newcastle.  They returned to Denver in 1977 where LaDonna worked at the V.A.  They moved to Ogallala, NE. in 1985 and started Martin Bay Drive-in at Lake McConaughy.  After selling the Drive-in and retiring in 1995, she worked at Keystone Rural Telephone part time. They moved to Ponca, NE. in 2002.  After Verlyn passed away in 2008, LaDonna moved back to Newcastle.

     LaDonna’s passion was art.  She enjoyed Charcoal drawing, water, acrylic and oil painting.  She also loved crossword puzzles and old movies.  Family and friends enjoyed her hand painted cards on special occasions.

     LaDonna is survived by her 2 daughters and their families:  Lori (Gerald) Curry of Burbank, SD.; Leanne (Jeff) Muenster of Trout Creek, MT.  Grandchildren include:  Matthew (Julee) Curry of Springfield, MO.; Teresa Curry (Justin Culver) of Lincoln, NE.; David (Allison) Kunkle of Fraser, CO.   Great Grandchildren are Nora Curry and Hazel Kunkle.

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