Born Shirley Elizabeth Jones in Baltimore and raised on Federal Street, she was a 1939 graduate of Frederick Douglass High School, where she played on the volleyball team.
She was a secretary who worked for the U.S. Customs Service on Gay Street, at the Army's Edgewood Arsenal and at the Housing Authority of Baltimore City.
In 1942, she married Charles E. Thomas Sr., a Harlem Park Junior High School social studies teacher who died in 2000. Mrs. Thomas had assisted her husband by grading his pupils' papers.
Mrs. Thomas enjoyed solving crossword puzzles, playing the piano, reading magazines, watching soap operas and shopping with her daughter.
A funeral Mass was offered Friday at St. Martin's Roman Catholic Church, where she was a member for more than 40 years.
Survivors include three sons, Charles Edward Thomas Jr. of Woodlawn, Mark Alan Thomas of Owings Mills and Bruce Kevin Thomas of Baltimore; three daughters, Debra Ann Dennis of Owings Mills, Shirley Marie Watkins of Baltimore and Veronica Lynn Thomas of Randallstown; five grandchildren; and two great-granddaughters.