Athens Review, Athens, Texas

January 29, 2014

Randal Tye Thomas

The Athens Review

Athens — Randal Tye Thomas passed away on Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. He was born in Terrell on Aug. 23, 1978. He grew up in Mabank.

Tye was an active member of the First United Methodist Church in Mabank when growing up. Tye grew up as a young entrepreneur. He founded and published his own newspaper as a student in Mabank High School.

He graduated Mabank High School, and after winning a high school contest on young entrepreneur, went to Johnson and Wales University in Providence, R.I. He had won a full scholarship to the University.

As a student, Tye owned his own business of over 100 vending-machine routes in the city. He was employed for the Coastway Credit Union in Providence. He also served as a volunteer in the Executive Offices of then Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Almond.

Tye graduated from Johnson and Wales University in 1998 with an Associate of Science degree in Business Administration. He graduated in November 1999 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing.

In January 2000, Tye founded Lakeside News, a weekly newspaper in Gun Barrel City. In February 2000, he launched the campaign for Mayor of Gun Barrel City, and on May 6, 2000, he won. He was only 21-years-old. He became the city’s youngest Mayor in history, as well as the youngest Mayor in Texas history. Tye also became a member of the Electoral College in the United States presidential election in Texas, 2000.

Tye has had several businesses over the last several years, including Skippy’s Critters, and Credit Repair Business.

Tye is preceded in death by his mother, Rynell Reynolds Thomas, and his is maternal grandmother, Claude Monahan Taylor.

Tye is survived by: his father, Larry Ray Thomas and his wife Janna from Mabank; his sister, Tracy Thomas Logan of Allen, and her children; niece, Brittany Baker and husband, Cole;  great-nieces, Avery Cole and Coley Ray Baker of Corinth; nephew, Blake Logan, and his fiancée, Brandi Kerry of McKinney; sister, Trina Schoenstein, and husband Mike Schoenstein of South Lake; nieces Jill, Allison, and nephew, Adam Schoenstein; brother in Mabank, Todd Thomas and wife, Debbie Thomas; and niece, Felicia; nephews, Brandon, Dylan, and Dayton Thomas; grandparents, Clyde and Ruth Thomas of Canton; aunt and uncle John and Ralaine Manning of Mabank; cousins Keitha Adams and family, Scott Manning and family of Mabank; aunt Dianne Thomas of San Antonio; cousin, Heath Thomas and family of San Antonio. 

Chloe, Tye’s 16-year-old black cat, has been put to rest.  Randal Tye Thomas and Chloe’s ashes will remain at Berarducci and Sons in Woonsocket, R.I. until the family has set a date and time to follow the request of Tye, which was to be sprinkled over Block Island together.

Any donations can be made at your local animal shelters of your choice in their honor.