Jess and Arlene Thomas met through a mutual friend who played Cupid in efforts to get her two friends together. Married in November 2007, they lived fulltime in Providence, Utah until they decided spending the winter in St. George might be more fun. They moved into the Temple Apartments, served in the Temple and soon decided to buy a townhouse. "Snowbirds" for a year or two, they were 'prompted' to make the peace and serenity of the Vintage their permanent residence. They report a warm welcome into the B7 Ward and are looking forward to years of service and many friendships in this ward. Arlene loves power walking, exercising, studying nutrition---anything to do with personal fitness and health - loves reading and education.
Arlene and her first husband opened a cosmetology school in Astoria, OR in 1965 where they also reared their three children. She calls her career in business management “very challenging but so very rewarding, with many changes over the years.” Widowed in 1987, Arlene continued until 2003 when she sold the college and was 'prompted' to move to Providence where she raised her grandson. “It was a great environment for him to complete high school and prepare for a mission,” she notes of the decision to move to northern Utah. While on his mission to England, Jess and Arlene found each other, realizing many common interests such as temple attendance, music, books, cultural events, travel, and most importantly love of family and the Gospel.
Arlene has been active in the church most of her adult life, serving as Relief Society President and as a Visiting Teaching Supervisor, Ward Missionary, Young Women advisor, Stake Singles Representative and the most fun—many years in Primary, including time as President. “Working with children has so enriched my life,” she states. Her last callings were as Relief Society Counselor and three years as Compassionate Service leader. “What a total joy for me. I so look forward to serving in the B7 Ward. There is nothing that brings more joy than serving in the Church.”
Jess and his first wife were married in Malad, Idaho in 1954, where she helped convert Jess to the gospel after the birth of their first of six children. Jess’ first career was as a data analysis specialist in the chemistry lab at NRTS near Idaho Falls, but he had a great desire to become an accountant, so for many years he took night classes toward that goal. In 1969 he enrolled full time at USU from which he received his degree about a year later and started his 25 year career at Bear River Associations of Government as head comptroller. The family lived in Hyrum from which all four sons served missions. His wife passed away in 1996, the result of a car accident. Jess retired in 1998. He has 24 grandchildren and 8 greats, which are a joy to the couple but require “never ending travel as we attempt to stay close to our families!!”
Jess has been very active in the church, serving in a bishopric as the 2nd counselor, as stake auditor, and as a YM advisor. In his spare time he also enjoys reading, cross stitch, watching westerns and Turner Classic movies. He also enjoys quilting, building bird houses, and golfing.
Arlene and Jess are currently serving a part-time mission at the St. George Member Location Center and attend the Temple each week. They also enjoy indexing, writing family and personal history, and geneology. They both love learning and taking Family History classes and studying the scriptures together, especially the Book of Mormon.