OBITUARY

Peter and Stella Thomas

June 28, 1924April 30, 2016

Peter Addenbrooke Thomas, long time resident of Naples and Greenwich, CT, passed away on April 30, 2016, surrounded by his children. Born in Pensacola, FL in 1924, Peter was the son of John D. Thomas, a Presbyterian minister from Wales, and Sybil A. Thomas, a schoolteacher from England.

Peter served with the Army’s 1st Infantry Division in Europe during World War II, fighting in five campaigns including the Battle of Normandy and the Battle of the Bulge. He was awarded the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, the Unit French Croix de Guerre and Belgian Fourragere.

In 1946 Peter married his high school sweetheart, Stella Barrineau, in Pensacola, FL. Peter and Stella were married for 68 years. Stella died in Naples in 2014. She was the love of his life and his greatest supporter.

Peter was a renowned voiceover narrator. His career began at 15 when he was hired as a cub announcer at the Pensacola radio station. After he and Stella were married, they moved to Mobile, Alabama where Peter worked as a television announcer. The following year, he was hired as a television personality in Memphis where he was best known as the star of the comedy show “The Unhandy Handyman”.

In 1951 he was offered to audition for WCBS in New York, and was hired to anchor the New York television local news, broadcasting live from Grand Central Station.

Peter left CBS in 1962 to pursue his growing career as a voiceover narrator, recording radio and television commercials, industrial films, medical narrations and documentary films. In a short time, he rose to the pinnacle of an industry in which he remained for decades, working into his 90’s. His career in broadcasting spanned over seventy years.

Peter was the voice of national commercials like Coca Cola, IBM, Exxon, United Technologies, Burger King, and ESPN, to name just a few. He narrated countless documentaries, including narrations for Nova and the 1996 Oscar winning documentary “One Survivor Remembers”. He is probably best known for the long running series “Forensic Files” which is still on the air after nearly 26 years. Of the many accolades he received, the one that meant the most to Peter was winning his industry’s top honor, The International Television and Radio Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award. In Naples, Peter was the recipient of the Naples International College Humanitarian Award.

Peter was devoted to remembering those who fought in World War II, especially those soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice. He served on the board of the National D-Day Memorial.

Peter is survived by his three children: Elizabeth Joyoprayitno, Peter Thomas Jr. and Douglas Thomas, as well as his son-in-law Yon Joyoprayitno. He has seven grandchildren: Kristin Thomas-Senior, John Joyoprayitno, Peter Thomas III, Derek Joyoprayitno, Trevor Thomas, Cora Thomas, and Henry Thomas, as well as two great-grandsons, George Thomas Joyoprayitno and Hudson Thomas-Senior.

A memorial service celebrating the lives of Peter and Stella Thomas will be held on Friday, May 20 at 5:00 p.m. at Naples Community Church.

In lieu of customary remembrances, please consider memorials in Peter’s name to Naples Community Church, The Conservancy of Southwest Florida, Naples Historical Society, The National D-Day Memorial in Bedford, VA, or a charity of your choosing in memory of Peter.

Services

  • Memorial Service Celebrating the lives of Peter and Stella Thomas Friday, May 20, 2016
REMEMBERING

Peter and Stella Thomas

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Emmanuel Robinson

July 6, 2018

Remembering Peter and Stella Thomas My favorite show is forensic files for about 10 years now.... I have many favorites but one that stands out to me is the episode"Gold Rush" lol and the voice behind it is Peter Thomas with the help of Stella Thomas every night while going to sleep I'll let the episodes just keep on running ask anyone God bless you Peter and Stella Thomas and may you R.I.P Always ❤️ We Love You

M. Warren

October 19, 2017

It is part of this man's legacy that people are contributing to this condolence page long after Peter Thomas is gone. Like so many others, I never met him but his voice was oddly comforting to me. Ten years ago I spent most of the year receiving Chemo and radiation. I lived alone and was often very sick at night. I also lived where a local TV station played back-to-back Forensic Files. I would start watching, and Mr. Thomas's voice would lull me to sleep. I'd wake, and he would be talking about an entirely new investigation, and so on and so on. Never saw a crime solved for months, but oh, that voice was a comfort to me! Wish I had contacted him then to tell him. Maybe if his kids read this website, they will be proud to know what an impact their father's work had on so many people. He sounded like a lovely man. Hope he and his wife, Stella, are dancing somewhere. ;-)

Tracie Bradley

July 27, 2017

I have loved Peter Thomas from day one. I saw the new forensic files ad for new shows to be aired on August 5th, I just found out he has passed away. Forensic files will never be the same, he had one of the best voices in broadcasting and he will be sadly missed by me and I am sure millions of other folks who loved him. Rest In Peace Mr Thomas

TY CLARK

May 23, 2017

I LOVED HIS SHOWS A LOT AND I AM SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS AND FOR HIS WIFE AND FOR HIS FAMILY AND HIS GRANDCHILDREN

Michael Leon

May 16, 2017

I became a Documentary fanatic after listening to his voice countless times on PBS and other shows, my favorite being "Wings Over Water. The pertest Trifecta, the subject mater, the music score and of course, his amazing voice.

May the gods bless your soul. Rest in Peace Peter Thomas, enjoy your ride to Valhalla!

Fr. Michael Kirkland

May 11, 2017

I still can't believe that Peter is gone! Such a beautiful man, devoted husband...a wonderful person all the way around. Yes! He will live on in our hearts and on TV with Forensic Files. I was honored that he sent me a few personalized cuts to use on my business voicemail... I get compliments all the time and refer my thanks, praise and long relationship with Peter Thomas... truly one of a kind! I was also one of the very last to hear his voice and speak to him at the nursing home the day before he passed away. As I shared with him over the telephone, saying, "you've ran the good race & fought the good fight...go forth to Stella, she has gone before...just like our Blessed Lord...to prepare a place for you! God Bless You my dear Friend," and those were my last words to a friend and hero of more than 50 years! MEMORY ETERNAL... MEMORY ETERNAL... MEMORY ETERNAL...MAY HIS MEMORY BE ETERNAL...

Chrissy Ferris

May 10, 2017

I've listened to Peter Thomas voice for many years as I've always been a fan of forensics files! Sadly missed but his voice lives on"

Ken Paul

February 28, 2017

I'm am so sorry to hear Peter died, I remember hearing his iconic voice since kindergarten.
Thank you for all you've done Peter!

Tammy D

January 19, 2017

I have trouble winding down and falling asleep sometimes, especially when I'm traveling. One night alone in a hotel room I was feeling anxious and emotional after dropping my daughter off for her first year of college 14 hours away. I was flipping through the TV channels & I landed on Forensic Files. I have always been a fan of the program, but that night, I paid more attention to the voice of the narrarator, and I felt instantly calm. There was something so comforting in his voice, even if he was talking about murder & death. It has now become a nightly ritual with Mr. Thomas to help wind down. It's very hard to explain, but as I stated, his voice feels genuine, kind, and comforting. After reading about him, I understand he was just that as a person. I'm so sorry to hear of his passing, and very thankful he shared his beautiful gift. May he RIP ...

Mark Iampietro

January 9, 2017

America's voice.