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Joseph Barry Thomason, Joe to all that knew him, age 70, passed away from heart complications on March 25, 2023. Born July 10, 1952 to Hilma and Wils Thomason of North Little Rock, Arkansas, Joe was the much adored baby of four siblings. He graduated from North Little Rock High School in the class of 1970 where he made many friends. Joe treasured those friendships and maintained close relationships with several special people from his school days for his entire life. At an early age Joe began working at his family’s furniture business, which he eventually made his own. Thomason Furniture Company was a North Little Rock institution for over 60 years during which Joe developed relationships with multiple generations of countless families in the downtown area and across Central Arkansas. Joe loved his customers and many of them stayed in touch with him after his retirement in 2020 because they valued his friendship so much.
Joe was a longtime figure on Main Street in the Argenta district of North Little Rock. He was a member of the North Little Rock Chamber of Commerce, Main Street Argenta, and served as a board member of the Arkansas Home Furnishings Association. He was also so glad to be a member of Lakeside Country Club, a place where he found solace and enjoyed countless happy times, holidays, and celebrations with his family and friends.
Joe was a passionate outdoorsman and delighted in being in nature, a place he found to be a spiritual retreat from a sometimes hectic modern world. He deeply cherished the camaraderie of a special group of hunting pals to whom Joe’s family is forever grateful for the joy they brought to his life. This group gathered as often as possible and built decades worth of memories together. It is certain his absence will be felt deeply by this wonderful group of men, and there will be noticeably fewer snacks at deer camp.
Cultivating relationships and loving people was Joe’s greatest talent. He did it effortlessly and like no other. He is survived by his adoring daughter, Katie Thomason of North Little Rock and while Joe took extreme care and thoughtfulness in everything he ever did, there was no role that he took more seriously than being Katie’s daddy. The two were so close that if you knew Joe, you knew Katie as well. They were truly kindred spirits. Joe made sure there was never a single moment that Katie doubted his absolute love for her or his unwavering support. He told her at every chance that he loved her with all of his heart, and that he was so proud and grateful that she was his daughter. He supported her passions, celebrated her accomplishments, and shared the burden of her disappointments. Some of the best years of this daddy’s and daughter’s life together was spent on the softball field where Joe wholeheartedly threw himself into an activity the two could share. Those wonderful memories stayed fresh in their minds and were often reminisced by the two for the rest of Joe’s life. As coach and team sponsor, he loved his ball players and was so proud of the young women they grew into. Katie’s greatest wish is to do justice to his memory as she hopes his legacy lives on through her.
Joe is also survived by the love of his life, Cindy Pickett, of North Little Rock. Joe and Cindy spent 22 years together, loving each other and supporting each other through the good times and the bad. They shared a mutual feeling of admiration, gratitude, and respect for each other and they were both so thankful to have the opportunity to build a life together- theirs was a true, rare love story. Their plans for an amazing retirement together makes Joe’s untimely death even the more devastating. Cindy selflessly put aside all of her own needs and other obligations to give the best care to Joe in his time of illness. She did so with complete grace and a loving heart.
Cindy gave Joe the gift of two granddaughters, Savannah Hernandez and Mia Hanley, both of North Little Rock. He loved them dearly and they brought him so much joy and pride.
Joe also leaves behind three siblings, Bill Thomason (Barbara) of Sherwood, Jeanette Duckworth (Buzzy) of North Little Rock, and Glenda Thomason of Jonesboro along with countless family members and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents and two very special nephews, Rick Woodworth and Randy Woodworth, whom he loved as brothers.
Joe’s lasting legacy will be the extraordinary way he loved all the people in his life. He valued those relationships above all else. His thoughtfulness, gentle strength, kindness, and cheerful nature were a gift to all that knew him and the pain of his absence will be felt by many for years and years to come.
Visitation will be Friday March 31, 2023 from 5pm – 7pm at Smith Family Funeral Home 1921 Main St. North Little Rock AR. 72114.
Funeral service will be at the same location Saturday April 1, 2023, at 2pm.
Burial will be at Wattensaw Cemetery in Lonoke at 4pm Saturday.
In lieu of flowers please make donations to The Wattensaw Cemetery Association, 400 Finley Dr. Lonoke, AR. 72086.
Arrangements entrusted to Smith North Little Rock Funeral Home, 1921 Main St., North Little Rock, AR 72114. Sign the guestbook at www.smithfamilycares.com.
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