Cover photo for Terry Thomas's Obituary
Terry Thomas Profile Photo

Terry Thomas

d. April 4, 2024

Big Sky

"Bo" Terry Thomas, born in Sacramento, CA, on March 20, 1957, passed away peacefully on April 4, 2024, in Big Sky, MT surrounded by family and friends. He was 67 years old. He was known as a true Big Sky legend and for his love of hunting, fishing, finding, and collecting artifacts, and spending time with family and friends.
Terry is survived by his twin brother Lance (Mary Goodson) Thomas of Big Sky, brother-fromanother-mother Brian (Happy) Perin of Bozeman, nephews Luke (Alli) Perin, Dillon Perin, and Cody (Nicole) Perin, his godson Cody Hodge, the OG Bo's, and too many friends to count or mention. He was preceded in death by his parents R.E. & Gladys Thomas, brother Jim Thomas, and his special little buddy Tyler Simmons.
 Terry was raised in Sacramento, CA and graduated from Rio Americano High School in 1975 before moving to the last best place - Montana. Terry followed his brother Lance and close friends’ "Bo" Tim and Mike Pattison to Big Sky in 1989 where he and Lance started a very successful HVAC business that thrived until their retirement in 2022. Over the course of his 30+ years in Big Sky, Terry took advantage of everything Montana has to offer. He was an avid hunter of all things on four legs and with wings and was often heard saying "smoke a pack a day" - wolves that is. Fishing was another favorite pastime of Terry. He was a gifted fisherman who loved nothing more than spending the day on Canyon Ferry with family or scoring big with friends at tournaments - during the summer and winter.
Terry's true passion was for hunting shed, and collecting trade beads, arrowheads, and other artifacts. He had an amazing collection built over 50+ years. The only thing that made Terry happier than finding these artifacts was sharing his knowledge on the topic and gifting pieces to friends. Over the last several years of his life, Terry gave away the vast majority of his collection in the form of small gifts he would pull out of his pocket and casually present to friends. Those on the receiving end could feel his love and cherish these treasures.
 Terry was a natural born teacher. And he loved most of all to teach kids about Montana, nature, and the outdoors. Terry spent countless hours introducing hunting and fishing activities to his nephews and the children of friends. He was particularly passionate about sharing his skills as an elk horn hunter and finder of artifacts. He's helped multiple generations of children develop good sportsmanship and safe and proper outdoor skills, along with a respect for the land and those that came before us. He loved watching kids get excited about the great outdoors.
As his health declined over several months, Terry was patiently and lovingly cared for by his sister-in-law, Mary Goodson. He called her an "angel on earth" and felt appreciative of and blessed for her care, which allowed him to remain in his home for as long as possible. Terry chose to discontinue treatment and enter hospice care at Big Sky Medical Center - he asked that everyone respect his decision. During those two weeks, Terry could be found holding court daily in his room but more often than not, in the hospital solarium or out on the back patio. The number of people that come to see him every day (all day and all night) puts him at legendary status as far as hospital visitors go.
Terry and the family were truly touched by this outpouring of love. Terry and his family also expressed eternal gratitude for the nurses, doctors, orderlies, administrators, and staff at Bozeman Deaconess Big Sky Medical Center. With no formal hospice program in Big Sky, amazing efforts, exceptions, considerations, and possibly rule bending was necessary for Terry to be cared for in Big Sky. Special thanks go to Rachel Porter for her never-ending advocacy. The family also wishes to acknowledge special friends Lynn Milligan and Sara Sipe for bringing great comfort to Terry and holding his hands as he drifted into the heavens.
 Memorial services will be on Saturday, May 18th, 2024, at 2pm at Riverhouse BBQ & Events, 45130 Gallatin Rd, Gallatin Gateway, MT. This will be immediately followed by a celebration of life and the 1st annual "Bo" Terry Thomas Memorial fundraiser. Be sure to wear your best beads!
 The family hopes Terry's legacy will live on by bringing permanent, end-of-life care to Big Sky, Montana. Contributions can be made to the "Bo" Terry Thomas Memorial Fund at Donations can also be made during the celebration-of-life that follows the service. All donations are tax deductible and will support the establishment of an end-of-life program in Big Sky, and to help cover expenses for families needing such care outside of the area. 
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Terry Thomas, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Service

Saturday, May 18, 2024

2:00 - 3:00 pm (Mountain (no DST) time)

Riverhouse BBQ & Events
45130 Gallatin Rd
Gallatin Gateway, MT

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