On June 12, 1935, Nola McDowell Thomas was the first born to the late William and Ollie Bell McDowell. She was known as Viola to her friends and family. At an early age, she accepted Christ as her Lord and Savior and was baptized in 1950, under the leadership of the late Rev. Hardin at New Saint Mark Baptist Church in Waterproof. While on her Christian journey, she joined the Usher Board at New St. Mark and served as a faithful member, until she moved to Maryland. Viola spent her life in Waterproof and worked as a domestic worker for many years. She was married to the late Albert Thomas in 1985.
On September 11, 2020, God plucked a beautiful flower from his garden and Sis. Viola heard the voice of Jesus saying, “Come home and be at rest.” Viola is preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Albert Thomas; two sisters, Virginia Myles and Lucille Arrington; and three children, Charlie, Virgie, and Jesse.
She leaves to cherish her memories: one daughter, Carolyn Robinson of Ferriday, LA; three sons, Melvin McDowell and Reginald McDowell of Waldorf, MD, and Marvin (Marilyn) McDowell of New Orleans; one god-daughter, LaChoy Harris of Waterproof, LA; three sisters, Elve Daniels of New Orleans, LA, Gloria Jefferson of Gretna, LA and Eddie Lee Gillis of Waterproof, LA; one brother, Eddie Dean (Bernice) Gillis of Monroe, LA; and a host of grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends.
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