Killed In Action – November 22, 1969 in Quang Ngai, Vietnam
His name can be found on The Wall on Panel 30E, Row 67
Stephen Thomas, who lived near the intersection of Lake Wheeler Road and Tryon Road, was the first man from Garner to be killed in Vietnam.
Thomas loved working on cars and was a good friend of Warren Davis, another car lover who later was killed in Vietnam. Warren was able to attend Thomas’ funeral at a church in Cary and later painted the Thomas home as a tribute to his lost friend.
Thomas also had ties to Harold Till, Jr., another fatality from Garner. Thomas had dated Till’s sister a few times.
Thomas was engaged to be married to a Cary girl. They planned to be married in Hawaii during his R&R break. He died soon after arriving in Vietnam.
He was with a mortar squad in Vietnam and had been trained in demolition. He was killed when a mortar shell, which had failed to fire, exploded as he was moving it to a place where it would not endanger his squad.