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Friday, May 24, 2024
Fred Thomas, courtesy of the University of Windsor Alumni Sports Hall of Fame
  Fred Thomas was born December 26, 1923 in Windsor. The son of Charles Fred Thomas and Edith Mae Thomas. Fred grew up in the Thomas family home at first on Goyeau Street and later at 967 McDougall Street in Windsor with brother George and 6 sisters. Fred Thomas was recognized early on as an outstanding athlete. He was the star of the Assumption College basketball team from 1945 to 1949 scoring 2,059 points in four years to place him third on the NCAA list at the time.

On February 23, 1945 Thomas led the Assumption team to a surprising 49-45 win over the Harlem
Fred Thomas, courtesy of the University of Windsor Alumni Sports Hall of Fame
  Globetrotters. The Globetrotter organization must have been very impressed with the young athlete for they invited him to join. Fred Thomas was a professional

Harlem Globetrotter for two seasons. A multi-talented athlete he also played professional football with the Toronto Argonauts in 1949. On July 4, 1948 Fred Thomas became the first black man to play in the professional Eastern League as a right fielder on the Cleveland Indians farm team Wilkes-Barre.

Fred Thomas has been an honouree in the Essex County Sports Hall of Fame since 1981. He was inducted into the Afro-American Hall of Fame in 1994 and the Canadian Basketball Hall of Fame in 1995.

Assumption College Basketball Stars, courtesy of Windsor Star
Fred Thomas Inducted in Canadian Basketball Hall of Fame
The Record Rack Opens in Windsor

Courtesy of Windsor Star
In addition to his being an outstanding athlete Fred Thomas also served his country in WWII as a pilot in the Royal Canadian Air Force. (see people in the military) He and business partner Roy DeShields opened a record store called the Record Rack in Windsor. Locally Thomas was well known for his commitment to amateur sport. He went on to teach and coach at a high school in Toronto for 20 years. Fred Thomas passed away in 1981. Glengarry Park was renamed Fred Thomas Park in his honour.
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