Marilyn Thoms Wheeler, 76, of Terre Haute passed away at 8:30 AM on Wednesday, February 28th 2018 after a hard-fought battle with cancer. She was born on July 21st, 1941 to William F Thoms and Marie K. (O’Connell) Thoms in Terre Haute, IN. She is proceeded in death by her parents, brother William Thoms, and husband of forty years Thomas J Wheeler.
Marilyn was a 1959 graduate of Schulte High School and a graduate of St. Mary-of-the-Woods College, where she was proudly presented with her Woods ring by her daughter Molly Wheeler.
Marilyn was an active member of St. Joseph’s Catholic Church for over twenty years, serving masses and funerals with her sister Patty Thoms. She loved being a part of that community and rarely missed a Saturday night service.
Marilyn was a member of the Swope Alliance and Red Hat Society and served as a CASA for many years. In 1990, she proudly served as the Dream Girl for the ISU chapter of Theta Chi Fraternity, her son Michael’s fraternity.
Marilyn never turned down a person in need. On one occasion, she encountered someone asking for money to avoid getting thrown out of the motel she’d been living in. Marilyn paid for the woman to stay another night there. Another time, she gave a couple stranded at a rest stop enough money to continue their journey. There are many other examples. She always said “If they’re scamming me, that’s on their conscience not mine.”
She loved the ocean and regretted she would not be able to make one last trip there. Her favorite places were the beaches in Florida and North Carolina which she visited with three of her sisters on their annual “Sister’s Trips.”
She loved her children and doted on her four year-old grandson. Having Ryan in her life kept her fighting. They always told each other “I love you to the moon and back.” When she was told the cancer was terminal, she said “I hate leaving all of you, but I hate leaving Ryan most of all.”
Marilyn is survived by daughters Maggie Wheeler (Ray Buechler) and Molly Wheeler of Terre Haute; and son Michael Wheeler (Alicia Winegardner-Wheeler) of Speedway, IN. Grandchilden Riley and Reis Walker and Ryan Thomas Wheeler. Sisters Carol Lindley of Moorehead, MN; Kathy Payne of Carlisbad, CA; Patty Thoms and Janet Cleveland of Terre Haute; Brother James Thoms of Huntington Beach, CA. Nieces and nephews Joseph Thoms, Christopher Thoms, Ann Gill, Tricia Hoff, Amy Cleveland and Jennifer Walker; and several great nieces and nephews. She will also be missed by many cousins and friends, especially Cathy Allen, Nancy Manuel, and Joe Hoalt.
Visitation will be 2:00PM to 6:00 PM Sunday, March 4th in DeBaun Springhill Chapel and 9:00 AM to 11 AM on Monday, March 5th at St Joseph’s Catholic Church followed by funeral mass at 11:00 AM. Burial will follow in Calvary Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Terre Haute Humane Society or CASA of Vigo County.