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880 Hopmeadow Street
P.O. Box 335
Simsbury, CT 06070
Phone: 860-658-7613
Fax: 860-651-0476
Elizabeth Thomas

Elizabeth Lee Thomas (Rickert)

October 15, 1925 - February 1, 2020
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Elizabeth Lee (Rickert) Thomas, 94, beloved wife of Richard Hadley Thomas, died Saturday, February 1, 2020 in Simsbury, CT. Born October 15, 1925 in Newark, NJ, she was the daughter of Thomas Hammer and Nancy Lee (Hendon) Rickert. The Thomases raised their four children primarily in Moreland Hills, OH and retired to Harwich, MA prior to moving to Simsbury, CT seven years ago. Lee Thomas was a graduate of Randolph Macon College for Women (BA, Philosophy) and Bryn Mawr College (MA, Philosophy). A social worker for many years, she also enjoyed swimming, tennis, playing bridge, reading The New Yorker, and, Bible study with the Episcopal Church. She spent every summer with family and a community of friends sailing, canoeing, picking blueberries, baking pies, and playing cards at their vacation spot in Georgian Bay, Ontario. She and her husband traveled through North America and Europe on a tandem bike, covering thousands of miles. Her willingness to slog hundreds of miles in less-than-ideal weather earned her the nickname, “the Saint,” by her friends.

Married for 64 years, she was a dedicated wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. In addition to her loving husband, she is survived by her children, Katherine Freygang of Cornwall, CT, Nancy Thomas and husband Mark Neikrie of Glastonbury, CT, Charles Thomas and wife Mary Lee White of Wilson, WY and Richard Thomas, Jr. of Duluth, MN; her grandchildren, Aliina Charging Hawk, Thomas Charging Hawk and his wife, Illona Yukhayev, Nathaniel Flagg, M. Jesse Neikrie, Yara Thomas, Richard Thomas, Benjamin Neikrie, and Sawyer Thomas.

A tribute will be held on Saturday, February 8th from 2 pm to 4 pm at McLean retirement community, 75 Great Pond Rd. Simsbury, CT 06070, in the Hartford Room of the Burkholder Center. In lieu of flowers, tribute gifts may be made to the Randolph College Annual Fund, P.O. Box 3215, Lynchburg, VA 24503 or at . Please note Elizabeth Lee Rickert Thomas in the memo of your check or in the Tribute section online. Please visit Lee’s “Book of Memories” at for online tributes.
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    February 8, 2020 | 2:00pm - 4:00pm
    February 8, 2020 2:00pm - 4:00pm
    McLean Hartford Room - Burkholder Building
    100 Sarah Lane
    Simsbury, CT 06070
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


Donations are being accepted for: Randolph College Annual Fund.


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Hu Huang

Posted at 10:54pm
Lee was my friend for thirty years. She was wonderful, smart, kind, and just amazing. I did learn a lot from her and I have a lot of fun memories. Lee was an avid reader and loved to share good books with me with her unique reviews and commentary. She was interested in learning more about Chinese culture and traditions from me. Her questions were usually deep and complex. One day she proudly told me that her grandson could speak Chinese and that he was planning a trip to China.
We shared the same political views and principles that made our conversations very enjoyable. We exchanged birthday gifts. One year I received a very beautiful scarf. In the card, Lee wrote that she visited a place where blind people were making scarfs. She purchased several scarfs to support and appreciate their art.
Last time I saw Lee was in October 2017. I visited Lee, and Dick, at their home. I wanted to take them out for dinner, but Lee and Dick insisted me to be their guest at their dining hall. It was one of the best dining experiences I ever had with beautiful friends and fine food. Not to mention, I had a ride on Lee’s exclusive golf cart.
Lee, I have so many sweet memories from you. Thanks for being such a kind and caring friend. I miss you.
Hu Huang
Cleveland, Ohio

Posted at 10:03pm
Lee was amazing. Non of us dared travel as freely as she did. Dick had constructed a travoir to carry their tent and clothing behind their tandem bike. Then they would ride their tandem to the airport pulling the travoir. One time, upon arriving in Greece after a 9 hour flight, they pitched their tent in the town square . . . They even rode their tandem bike thru the long, long tunnels in Norway. Lee and Dick were a team. Lee was brave. We were pansies. How we will miss her. But what a wonderful life she had..

Marty Culbertson

Posted at 07:23pm
Such fond memories of Lee and Dick as part of the “Chowder Marching Society “ With my parents... long hikes or cross country skiing adventures and finishing with dinner!

Nancy Thomas

Posted at 11:04am
Mom was a great talker, but she was also a good listener. She always wanted to hear about the kids, our daily lives, our work, and even our friends. And she had a good but subtle sense of humor. I travel for work, and one time upon return, I called her and she exclaimed, "Nan, you are back from the Haunts of Hootin' Kern!" I asked, what's a hootin' kern, and she evaded the question. If anyone knows, do tell. More than anything, I will miss her wisdom. She could zero in on the root of a problem better than anyone I know. And she had a way of simplifying without minimizing. A wise listener! Now that's a formula for a good mom. Nancy Thomas

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