George Anthony "Tony" Thias, 86

George Anthony "Tony" Thias, 86, of Lansing passed away peacefully with his family at his side on Jan. 12, 2017.
Tony was born on June 12, 1930, to Hungarian immigrants, Henry and Barbara (Toth) Thias, in a simple farmhouse off the shore of Lake Michigan. He was able to keep the turn-of-the-century home where he enjoyed having his family and friends around him. Tony was a modest man yet dedicated to providing the very best for his family.
He was an active member of St. Mary Cathedral and graduated from Michigan State University, where he met his wife of 62 years. He was co-president with his wife, Bobbie, of the MSU Take-Down Club, was an avid MSU sports fan and enjoyed traveling.
Tony had a lifelong career in insurance beginning in 1958, with the Mourer-Foster Insurance Agency in Lansing. In 1977, he formed Thias Insurance Agency. In 1981, he was a founding member of America One in Lansing and America One, Inc. He was a member of the Lansing Insurance Agency Association, Michigan Insurance Agency Association, Optimist Club of Lansing and the Knights of Columbus.
Tony was a self-taught trumpet and piano player and attended the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp for many years. He was in the Senior Class Band where he routinely played for retirement homes. He was also a member of the Kiwanis Band.
He had a lifelong passion for nature, especially his birds, and world history. Tony was one of the most self-educated and self-read individuals around. He could converse with anyone he met about any topic from anywhere in the world.
Tony loved meeting new people. His well-known opening question to someone he was meeting for the first time was always, "So, where are you from?"
Surviving are his six children, Thomas J. Thias, Margaret A. "Peggy" Thias-Kronner, John A. (Julie) Thias, Peter G. Thias, Maureen A. (Greg) Walton and James P. (Nadia) Thias; seven grandchildren, Brian Benet, Elizabeth, Anna and Maria Kronner, Marisa and Eric Thias, and Sarah Walton; nieces, nephews, and several great-nieces and nephews.  
He was preceded in death by his beloved wife Barbara; an infant daughter Barbara Catherine Thias; and daughter Patricia Ann Benet.
The funeral mass will be Friday, Jan. 20, at 10 a.m., at St. Mary Cathedral, Lansing, with the Rev. Msgr. George Michalek as Celebrant. The family will receive friends at the Estes-Leadley Greater Lansing Chapel from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 19, where the Rosary will be prayed at 7:15 p.m. The Rite of Interment will be at the Gibson Cemetery, Laketown Township.  
Memorial contributions may be made to Sparrow Hospice, c/o Sparrow Foundation.  Online condolences may be left for his family at


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