ForeverMissed
This memorial website was created in memory of my mum, Cecilia Thomas, born on November 27, 1954, and passed away on March 7, 2021 at 66 years of age. 

She was the most amazing wife, mum, sister, daughter, nani, mum in law, aunt, cousin, friend, doctor and mentor to so many.

She squeezed every ounce out of life and whilst it breaks my heart she is no longer with us, I am creating a space so that she can be remembered as the warm, positive, kind, generous and determined force of nature that she was. 

Cysga'n Dawel x
Posted by Geraldine Walsh on March 19, 2021
Celia, I remember the first day I started work at the surgery - almost 34 years ago. I recall the practice manager at that time introducing me to you. You had come up from Minster Road for the weekly partners meeting. You bounded into my room and on shaking my hand, very enthusiastically, you welcomed me hoping I would be happy working at the practice. Although you worked mainly at Minster Road whenever you were at Brynderwen you always popped up to have a chat, asked how my family were and we chatted about your family /grandchildren. One day some years ago, I bumped into whilst I was out cycling. You said to me "I didn't realise you cycled" I remember saying to you "celia give up the running it's bad for your knees, go and get yourself a bike. Some weeks later you came to Brynderwen and told me you had bought a bike. The rest is history, you were hooked and like everything else you did in life gave it150%. You were full of life and truly a lovely lady to work with. I know your family will miss you so much but your great strength will help them enormously. If there are bikes in heaven, you will be on one I know. Rest in peace Celia.
Posted by Karen Williams on March 19, 2021
Cecilia you were an amazing woman. I was so shocked and saddened at your sudden passing. You were such a very warm and compassionate person. You have left a big gap in so many people’s lives. It was a privilege to know you. Sending condolences to your family at this very difficult time.
Posted by Dawn James Bowen on March 18, 2021
Celia, I only had the pleasure of knowing you a few years but what a pleasure they have been. A really great doctor to work for, and a lovely person to work with. We’d be guaranteed a giggle if you called me down to help you with your lack of IT skills and your ‘click-happy’ approach to tackling the computer if it wasn’t immediately doing what you wanted it to! And you loved to chat... ‘any gossip?’ you’d say, and we’d chat a while, talking about anything that came up. Our last conversation was about our adult kids’ love of Anime... our chats were often on something random! You were also a great story teller and I really enjoyed you regaling your adventures.

I remember a particular conversation we had about road biking and I told you I admired you for the guts you had to do it. I said I’d be terrified to ride a bike on the road ‘just in case’. Your answer was simple; “there are risks to everything and you’ll miss out on so much if you worry too much about the risks”. How true this was for you - a gutsy, charming lady and you grabbed life with both hands and gave it a good shake!

We have received such wonderful tributes on the Surgery’s social media platforms from patients in the aftermath of your passing. I truly hope your family and friends take comfort in them and see how many lives you managed to touch during your career. Nobody is ever perfect but you often went over and above for patients and it didn’t go unnoticed. You also took the time to chat to staff and everyone feels like they’ve lost a friend, not just a work colleague or an employer.

It was a joy to be around you and work with you, and you are already missed enormously. RIP Celia xXx
Posted by Suzanne Liddell on March 18, 2021
Dr Cecilia Thomas you were an amazing woman and I can't believe you have gone you meant so much to my family especially to my sister Elizabeth ,may you rest in peace good night god bless x
My heart felt sympathy for your loved ones
Posted by Breda O'neill on March 18, 2021
I have known Cecilia since she came to my father’s funeral in 1967 . We were first cousins who became very good friends. She was always easy to talk to and gave great advice. I only had to call her and she would be there for me especially when John had his heart attack and my mother took ill while in Bristol. Nothing was ever too much trouble for her. She just got on with things no fuss, no hassle and one could always depend on her. She always tried to see the best in people even when they weren’t very nice. I find it very hard to think of her not being at end of the phone . She was great for family gatherings and house parties . All my family were mad about her and my mother was so fond of her. Life is very lonely without her.
When she came to Ireland, she helped with calving, thinning the drills in the fields and helping with baling the wheat and barley. One can definitely say she was not afraid of hard work. I shall miss her everyday and pray for all the family.
Love to Roger, Bethan, Emma, Carwyn, Tomos, Henri, Rhys and Jess.
Posted by Michael Haberlin on March 18, 2021
So shocked and saddened at the sudden passing of Cecilia, a very warm and compassionate helpful person. You were the go to person to look for cures to all the ailments in our family. You were a wonderful niece to my mother and cousin to all the family.  You lived in the fast lane and lived life to the full. You have left a big gap in our family as is also true for Rodger, Emma Bethan, Rhys so Cecilia Rest in peace. Condolence to all the family.
J



 
Posted by Sophie HYDE on March 18, 2021
You leaving us has caused me so much sadness but I know we need to turn that into strength and do good in your memory.
I wish to be even just half the person that you were to me to someone else, then I’ll know I have done good.
Posted by Lucy Kamath on March 18, 2021
Celie has been a constant in my life from my very earliest memories. Indeed, she loved to tell me of one of our first meetings, when my dad had dropped me at her house because my mum was in labour with my younger sister and I apparently sat under the kitchen table, bawling and refusing to come out until he finally came back for me hours later.

Thankfully, she forgave me this terrible start and the rest of my childhood seemed to always have been in the company of the Thomases; going to Gym Joey with Rhys, Margam Park, Gunsmoke City and many off-season, poncho-covered trips to Alton Towers with Celie taking me on the river rapids again and again because I was too scared to go on the big rollercoasters with my siblings. Not to mention every Christmas to New Year period spent largely at their house, eating, laughing, playing board games and watching World's Strongest Man.

One accolade I have to my name is that I am, I believe, the only sporting challenge that Celie ever gave up on. Specifically, trying to teach me to roller skate. After physically pulling me around the park by my arms over and over again, she finally conceded that my innate lack of balance was too much even for her superhuman determination to overcome. It took a long time for her to reach this conclusion though. She was stubborn.

As an adult, Celie provided one of my main lines of defence against the chaos of the world. In a crisis, I always call my Dad and whenever he didn't know the answer his response was invariably to "call Celie, she will know what to do." As many people will attest, Celie was a problem solver and a loyal, reliable friend. If you called her with an issue she would find you a solution and, in most cases, turn up at your house with her sleeves rolled up, ready to help.

Celie never let me down. It's only now that I realise how much confidence it gave me to have her in my corner. Her love and friendship was part of the foundations on which I built my world. This loss has put everything off kilter and I don't know if my world will ever fully right itself again.
Posted by Siwan Gwilym on March 18, 2021
I’ve started and stopped and rewritten this so many times because nothing seems to sufficiently convey my feelings. Celia was the most wonderful friend and her influence on my life has been huge.

I was lucky enough to be mentored by Celia when I was a GP registrar. Her warmth, knowledge, enthusiasm and love for her work was infectious. She taught me to listen, be inquisitive and look at the bigger picture. “What else is going on in their lives” has been an invaluable guide throughout my career.

It was over a coffee and some Garibaldi biscuits that the idea to run a marathon was conceived. I remember our first run in Bute Park. She set off at breakneck speed, I barely managed to keep up and thought there’s no way I could stick with her at that pace for very long. Just as my stitch was about to split my lung in two she thankfully decided to ease the pace - thank God! Soon afterwards Emma joined us on our marathon quest and that was the start of many great runs and explorations. Celia liked a run with a purpose, a run with a reward (hot chocolate with marshmallows) and an air of danger (being chased by a galloping horse near Caerphilly mountain resulted in the best leap over a gate ever seen). There was always a stop to smell the flowers, marvel at a tree or savour a view. The best run ever, involved a stop for a massage at the Vale Hotel, then a run to Llanerch Vineyard for wine tasting before ending up in the Cameo! Dublin marathon was the start for Celia then there was no stopping her.

We would often go away on CPD courses and combine them with a visit to the theatre (the more bizarre the better, The Goat was a particular favourite!), a gallery or a fine dining restaurant. On days off we’d go for a run or a trip somewhere, often with her lovely mum. Celia and Dil would get enthusiastic about projects like keeping hens then they’d research it to the max - we all benefited from the excellence of the Eglu! During one skiing holiday in Praz we witnessed Roger’s amazing world record attempt at creating a human snowball on snowblades. Celia was such fun to be with, always interested in people and learning. “I’ll try anything once apart from incest and Morris dancing” she used to say!

I remember sitting at her kitchen table when I was heavily pregnant with Twm, I was having a few twinges and she predicted he’d be out by morning and she was right! She was such a huge support when I had the boys, she was the voice of reason if I was worried or stressed about anything, she always helped me see the wood for the trees. The flavour of our day trips changed from shopping in Cowbridge to going to Cefn Mably Farm or, our favourite, St Fagans. The boys loved going on the horse and cart and we became best mates with Arnie and Luke, the shire horses. These are some of my sweetest and most precious memories. She was an amazing Godmother to Twm and Siôn. Leaving Celia to move to Anglesey was the most difficult decision I’ve ever made.

Despite the distance, the love and friendship remained. She was always there to turn to. We had many more great weekends and trips together. A trip to Euro Disney stands out as being truly magical, not because of the Disney sparkle but because we shared it with Celia, Roger, Emma, Carwyn, Tomos and Henri (and because of Roger’s starring role in the cowboy show!)

I feel so sad that she’s gone and feel so deeply sorry for Roger, Emma, Beth, Rhys, Tomos, Henri, Carwyn and Jess. I also feel incredibly grateful to have had her in my life and to have such great memories.

Celia, I love you and I’ll miss you with all my heart. X
Posted by Stephanie Matthews on March 18, 2021
I shared a house with Celia and Roger when we were medical students together. I could not have asked for better friends. Ceily was always the one with the fun ideas, pushing us all to make the most of every day. Her lovely Mum and Dad were so proud of her. She was a giving person, always caring, encouraging and welcoming. She was so so clever and wise, yet modest. Rest easy and in peace lovely lady. You have left your fabulous spirit in all the lives you touched.
Posted by YAPOUDJIAN JEAN-ROBERT on March 18, 2021
De tout cœur avec vous ! Que Dieu vous assure sa consolation dans votre chagrin ! Nous vous embrassons tous, Roger bien sûr, et aussi toute la famille ! Maïté et Jean-Robert, belle-sœur et grand frère d'Annick Hyde et de son cher époux Phil
Posted by Jacqueline et Jean Blaise... on March 18, 2021
En pensées avec vous tous . Nous gardons de Célia des souvenirs mémorables lors de nos rencontres il y a plus de 20 ans ! La vie passe et nous ne comprenons pas pourquoi elle s’arrête comme ça !! Mais Célia a marqué son passage et vous a donné et laisse plein d’amour !
Bien amicalement .
Posted by Annick Hyde on March 18, 2021
Celia,
We are all in shock !!!
Of all the bestest and closest friends we have on this planet, who would have thought that you would be the first to leave us !
You were the fittest !!!! It’s just unbelievable ! So unfair !
It has left so many of us in pieces and trying hard to stop feeling sad & angry at the same time.
Hard to accept that the anchor of our gang has left us.
Celia you were a true friend and a fighter and for sure I know that you would want to see us all keeping going for each other and for ourselves too.
Let’s follow your amazing exemple and pick ourselves and each other up and enjoy life to the full as you knew so well how to do it.
You weren’t only the strongest but one of the wisest woman I have ever known and such a wonderful supportive friend too.
Still can’t believe that you are no longer with us.
Feel as if we’ve been robbed of years and years of sharing more wonderful times together.
You were definitely one in a million !
Almost 30 years and so many memories of so many wonderful times spent together, so many wonderful discussions and so many laughs.
Feeling so lucky and so privileged to have been part of your life and to still have Roger, Emma & Carwyn, Tomos & Henri, Bethan, Rhys & Jess to share and cherish so many fond memories of you with.
You definitely left us too soon but be assured that we will continue to make the most of life and care for one another as you did for us.
Missing you so so much :(
Posted by Audra Maio on March 18, 2021
Celia it isn't possible that you are no longer here to gently cajole us to do what we set out to do - with humour and determination. Your light but firm hand on our shoulder. Slightly ahead, but always checking on and rounding up those of us (some younger, and less fit, than you) closer to the rear. Your curiosity about people and life was insatiable, your kindness profound. It is a privilege to have been one of your many many friends and to have shared stolen minutes away from your family, who you adored, and the countless patients to whom you were committed. I hope you knew how special you are to us all. A friend, a teacher, an inspiration. Sending heartfelt condolences to all of Celia's family about whom she spoke of so warmly, so often.
Posted by Gerald Haberlin on March 18, 2021
God Rest Cecilia , I knew Cecilia from about the age of 6years and she was 12years when she came with her parents to my fathers funeral in 1967 in Co Kilkenny, Ireland. When she was leaving after the funeral everyone was very sad but she thought of the 2 youngest boys(Tony &Gerald) and gave them a bar of chocolate each, it eased the pain immensely . Cecilia would come many more times to her cousins in Co Kilkenny for summer holidays over the years and it was most enjoyable . One could always sense that Cecilia was always going to be successful no matter what she put her hand to, she ended up being a highly acclaimed doctor with a Beautiful Family, we send our sincere condolences to Roger,Emma,Bethan ,Rhys and brother William and all family and friends . We say a prayer for Cecilia every day , Gerald and Caroline
Posted by Ann Barker on March 17, 2021
I went to St Joseph’s Primary school with Celia and she was my friend all throughout that time ! What a wonderful girl she was , kind gentle warm and I valued her friendship more than I can say . I loved going to play at her house and staying for tea. Then we went to Bishop Walsh together too and we made new friends but we still stayed friends and shared good times . I’m so so sad to hear that she has gone to be an angel too soon but I feel blessed to have known her . My prayers are with her family and friends.
Posted by Phil Hyde on March 17, 2021
Words.
There are often times that I can sit here and just let the words flow.
And why not? I have spent my nearly 70 years of life on this amazing planet immersed in a language that has more than one million words.
And counting.
Words should come easy. Words should flow.
There are words for all kinds of different things; the weather, the colours of life, the deepest of feelings.
But not this.
No. Not this.
This loss has no words that can adequately describe this...
How can you describe the hurt, the pain, the loss?
So, the rational conclusion is to accept all of that, and to move on.
And that is exactly what Celia would have wanted. Exactly what Celia would have said.
I can see her there, before me.
She is saying: “Come on Phil. This isn’t like you. What are you playing at? Just get on with life you daft bugger!”
Words of wisdom.
She may have left us. She may have gone somewhere that no one of us can ever follow. But she will always be there. Here. These memories of her will always be with us. Imprinted on our consciousness, telling us to get on with our lives.
Always the wise words.
She was my friend.
Her sudden untimely loss has taken away a part of me.
Yet part of her will remain forever with me.
Forever.
With me.
She was, absolutely, that important in all our lives.
I wish, I profoundly wish, that I could be there with my friends that she has left behind. They are the ones that suffer; not her. I should be there to make vain attempts at helping.
Helping.
Talking.
Sharing.
Hugging.
But it is not to be.
Instead, one of you poor suckers is going to have to hug Roger for me.
I understand that he is virus free so you should be ok...
Maybe...
Posted by Stella Spragg on March 17, 2021
I was lucky enough to have been a great friend of Cecilia at school. I would often be invited back to her lovely bungalow on Plantsbrook Road to stay. I remember so many happy times. Lots of fun and lots of laughter. It was only last year that I finally managed to contact her after joining the Bishop Walsh site. She sent a lovely message in which she confirmed her dream job of becoming a doctor. I was so shocked and saddened to read of her sudden passing. I have just been looking through the photos. Wonderful memories for the family. Rest in Peace my friend. Xxx
Posted by Lesley Edwards on March 17, 2021
CELIA MY FRIEND
Celia joined my husband Richard in general practice 40 years ago. We soon became firm friends. We were mostly on the same wavelength! I always said Richard had two partners, one in work and one at home. They didn’t always agree on work experiences which ended up with long discussions and debates! But you could rest assured they were both stubborn and determined!
There was no malice, just two people debating life which was interesting, funny and sometimes frustrating. But they had a very healthy lovely relationship.
I loved Celia’s company. She was always interesting and interested. She was warm,compassionate, helpful and loyal. Celia did everything at 100 miles an hour. Something that I smiled at. 25 years ago we went holiday to New York and every morning at 7 am she was at the hotel gym. Sorry, but I stayed tucked up in bed. No point in trying to keep up. She hasn’t changed since, and neither have I.
We spent many holidays together, both summer and winter skiing holidays. The last two holidays were spent following the history of the first then second world wars. Unfortunately our bucket list holiday to New Zealand last year was cancelled due to COVID. I’m so sorry we will not get to do that another time.
Celia has three children who are a credit to her guidance, wisdom, warmth and work ethic.
I will miss Celia terribly. I still cannot believe I will not share another moment with her again. But I have many years of memories, and her legacy will live on in Emma, Beth, Rhys, Tomos and Henri. Roger....... much love x
Posted by Stephanie Jones on March 17, 2021
I met Celia whilst caring for Tomos and Henri as a nanny. She was always so hands on with the boys and she always gave my advice on childhood illnesses that you don't get on a first aid course, she was so full of knowledge. If Tomos asked me something and I didn't know the answer he'd say "my nani knows that".
She was so encouraging about me moving to New Zealand and for someone like me, who doesn't have great family connections,that meant a lot. Emma,Caws and their whole family were supportive, but especially Celia. I was so nervous but she said that if I don't go I'll regret it! And she was right.

To Celia ,
Thanks for making a young girl feel a bit less lonely and a bit more loved. I'll remember you forever.
Steff xxx
Posted by Andrew Edwards on March 17, 2021
For 40 years I have always thought of you as family. I was lucky enough to be able to share with you most of the major milestones in my life.
You always had a kind and supportive word, whether holidaying as a child or keeping abreast of how my little family were doing in recent years.
Nearly five years ago you were at my restaurant (supporting me as always), spoke only a few moments to my wife Lorna, and told us we would be expecting our first child. The very next morning we did a test. Dylan is now four years old and the light of our life. He cannot go to bed without ‘Bunny’ - Bunny being the gift you gave him as a newborn. More recently our second wonderful son came along, and throughout the lives of both boys you always insisted Lorna kept you in the loop with any medical issues they may have had.
We will think of you when searching for Bunny - a reminder of your kind, caring nature that will be missed by everyone who’s lives you touched.
Andrew
Xxx
Posted by Tony Haberlin on March 17, 2021
My deepest sympathy to Roger,Emma, Bethan, Rhys and extended family, on the passing of Celia. The Haberlins in Laois, Ireland will say a prayer, that you will find strength to get through this difficult period, as Celia would want you to enjoy the memories.
The light of heaven to her, May Celia rest in peace
Posted by Ruth laurie-hopper on March 17, 2021
I am so sorry to hear of the sad and sudden passing of Celia. My thoughts are with Roger and family.
Love and warmth
Ruth Laurie-Hopper xxx
Posted by Megan Dacey on March 17, 2021
I have so many fond memories of Celia that include fantastic holidays and days out (I won't dwell on my awful attempt at a 10k even though Celia cheered me on!).

Celia's generosity gave us all incredible skiing holidays where our families came together, drank lots of wine, ate raclette and rang out the new year together. I loved seeing Celia and all of the Thomas family in Aberaeron last summer too and my love and thoughts are with you all. Xxxx
Posted by Sally Davies on March 17, 2021
Celia was such a wonderful friend: kind, fun, stimulating, encouraging and a lot more besides.
Over the last 10 years we’ve had so many adventures and had talked about plans for many more after lockdown. 
Walking, training, ski-ing, swimming and more recently cycling, not to mention endless lunches, coffees, evenings in Chapter and trips away.
Celia was also wise and supportive and always ready to help.
It’s totally unreal that she’s no longer with us but I will forever remember a loyal, true and inspirational friend.

Posted by David Thomas on March 17, 2021
My wife was such an amazing person . I love her so much . I cannot express in words how much I am hurting . She died far too young . We had so much planned . But I take some comfort in that she was doing what she loved , cycling . She died instantaneously and did not suffer . But life will never be the same without her energy and zest for living . She was a loving mother and grandmother and all her family adored her . Goodbye to the love of my life . I have such wonderful memories to help me cope.
Posted by Jessica Lou on March 17, 2021
To Cel

You were caring, courageous and compassionate and I count myself extremely fortunate to call you my mother in law. You had a wonderful sense of humour and a passion for life which endeared you to everyone who met you.

I loved spending time with you, we would gossip and laugh about many things, but the majority of the time we would talk about how much Rhys is Roger’s double.

You always WOW’d me with your passion and thirst for life and you really did live life to the full. You squeezed every ounce out of every day no matter how tired you were. In my eyes you were Superwomen. I admired how you would always look for the positives in every situation.

It breaks my heart that you won’t be able to see Rhys & I get married or to see our children grow up but I will make sure that they know everything about you and most importantly shall keep your memory alive.

You were our voice of reason, the advice giver and the best story teller. I would always say to Rhys that you were a human fact file. I learnt so much from you and for that I will be forever grateful.

I will remember everything you have taught me. Your kindness has inspired me in more ways than one. I thank you for listening to me and offering guidance whenever I needed it.

You leave a massive hole in our lives but we will draw strength from everything you taught us.

We shall always love you
Posted by Jo Blankley on March 17, 2021
It's with such a heavy heart that I write this tribute to Celia. There just aren't the words to describe what a kind, warm, loving woman she was. I will never forget how welcome she made me feel when Emma invited me to go away with her family and the Salmons soon after we became firm friends back in school. And in all the years since, during countless meals, family gatherings and all those magical Christmas Day nights - full of food, games and laughter, she made me feel like part of the family. Whatever I was doing, whatever stage of my life I was at, she was always interested and never afraid to ask questions that showed how much she genuinely cared. Celia was never too busy to listen and her gentle but obvious wisdom, combined with an abundance of innate compassion, made her a truly special human. Everyone who knew her felt lucky to do so and that's why her loss will be felt so hugely by so many. 

To Roger, Emma, Beth, Rhys, Tomos and Henri, I want to say that I hope you can take comfort in knowing how many lives Celia touched and that, whilst she is gone far too soon, she left an imprint in this world that won't ever be forgotten. I know your lives will never be the same, but they will be forever enriched by your inspirational wife, mum and Nani who will always be with you.

Posted by Jemma Thomas on March 17, 2021
Celia was one of a kind and a true inspiration. Some of my greatest memories involve Cels, from skiing, running Snowdon, drinking lethal cocktails in “mouffle”, to just being able to have a gossip over food/wine/ coffee. She was so warm, funny, kind and welcoming, my heart breaks that she is gone for myself and her family but she will never be forgotten.
Posted by Alan Stone on March 17, 2021
I feel something has gone from my life now that I am writing this. Celia was such a lovely, lively vibrant light in this world. She was kind and generous with her time. She was a superb doctor, colleague, teacher, mentor and friend. She was a shining example of the best of humanity and the world is a poorer place without her. She was taken very young and very unexpectedly and I really feel enormous empathy for Roger and the children. Wherever she is I hope she is still getting up at 6.00am to do squats and burpees....
Posted by Emma Moore on March 17, 2021
Celia
I can’t quite believe I am writing this. I have been reminiscing this last week about growing up with Emma and remembering some of the times we spent together - Australia, training for the marathon together (you always miles ahead of me), sharing a few drinks together before you would fall asleep where you sat, the Globe Theatre where we foolishly shared a bottle of wine in the midday heat before going to the showing and then watching you fall asleep with your head resting on the side of the stage as the actors performed around you! Always on the go but when you did eventually sit down you didn’t stay awake for long!

Thank you for all of the wise words and second medical opinions!

You will be forever missed and always remembered with a smile.

‘You can shed tears that she has gone, or you can smile because she lived.’
Posted by Emma Williams on March 17, 2021
To my beautiful mum.....

You taught me how to be independent, strong, brave, determined and fearless. You were kind, loving, thoughtful and generous. You showed me how to raise a family and to love unconditionally. I miss you so much.

Your zest for life was contagious; you were 100 miles an hour. You didn't waste a second of life; filling every moment with family, friends, work and fun. You never said "no" to a challenge and your gutsy determination was inspirational (and sometimes a little scary).

I miss your no nonsense approach to life, wise words, encouragement, enthusiasm, help, love and support. I can't imagine a life without you.

You were genuinely interested in everything and everyone. You took time to listen and learn and you absorbed everything. You loved to read and travel and were so adventurous. We sat at the top of the Garth on New Year's Day morning this year watching the sun rise and planning all the trips we would have together once restrictions were lifted. I can't believe we won't have another adventure together but I promise to live life like you did.

I always remember how much you loved Dr Seuss. When we visited Florida a few years ago we spent ages in Dr Seuss land laughing and reciting the lines from his books to the boys. After you died, you had a parcel delivered to the surgery. I opened it and it was the Dr Seuss book "I can read with my eyes shut". I am sure you bought it as part of your homeschooling curriculum for Henri. I read it today and there is a passage in it that sums up perfectly the advice you so often gave to the boys...

"The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go."

You were such a positive influence on the boys - reminding them (as you did me) that with hard work anything and everything is possible and there are no limits on what we can achieve in life.

Take Beca on adventures for me mum and keep an eye on us....

Love you xxx

"Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened" Dr Seuss.
Posted by Catherine Lewis on March 17, 2021
Celia was an amazing woman in every way you can possibly imagine . My life has been so much for the better for having had her as a fantastic friend . Celia was everything you could want in a person - feisty , clever , caring , kind , loving , interested in people, a keen sense of humour and the list goes on. So many very happy memories of being with Celia especially our times as friends and families in Praz and we were all there because of her unending generosity. We loved her to bits and so very glad we had her in our lives Xxx
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Recent Tributes
Posted by Cat Brady on May 15, 2021
I was lucky enough to find Dr Thomas in the Newport Road surgery, pre Minster Road, when I was 19. She helped me through so much over the following 25 years, with care, compassion and incredible professionalism. I am very sad to hear of her passing. 
My deepest condolences to her family and friends.
Posted by A C on April 13, 2021
From Antonia Luscombe-Whyte

I have just heard devastating news.
I am so, so sorry to hear of Dr Thomas's sudden death. 
I know will be a massive loss to family, colleagues and patients. I knew her as a passionate, caring woman who did so much to help others and left the world a lesser place without her in it.
With love and prayers to family and friends who will no doubt be left reeling.

Posted by Michael Pasquin on April 13, 2021
Cysga'n Dawel, your Mother was a lovely, gentle person, and I am and I am already missing her terribly – and I’m only a patient.

I know you live in Japan from choice because you like their way of life, and probably can’t get home. My thoughts are with you as well.

Nick. (nickdavies007@aol.com)
Recent stories

From the weekly National RCGP email

Shared by Emma Williams on April 1, 2021
Dr Celia Thomas

1954 - 2021

It was with extreme sadness that we were informed of the sudden death of our partner Cecilia Thomas on Sunday 7 March 2021. Celia as she was known had been a partner at the practice for almost 40 years. She joined Minster Surgery initially as a trainee GP in 1981 and returned in 1984 as a Partner.  At that time the surgery was based at its original premises on Newport Rd. Celia was part of the team who oversaw the rapid expansion of the practice into St. Mellons in 1985 and the relocation from Newport Rd to its current site on Minster Rd in 1988.  
Celia was always a keen educator of trainee GPs and medical students. She became a GP trainer in 1988 and in 1996 she was appointed as an Honorary Clinical Lecturer for Cardiff University.  For many years she also led a popular study module on medicine in literature for third year students which culminated in an annual visit to the Hay Book Festival. 

During her time as an RCGP trainer she was appointed as the Programme Director of the Cardiff post graduate training scheme in 1990. Providing pastoral support and career guidance to hundreds of trainee GPs. Tributes from former trainees have described her as an inspirational trainer and wonderful teacher and her services to the RCGP were further recognised when she was appointed as a Fellow of the College. 

In addition to her busy professional life Celia also found time to pursue numerous hobbies and interests, she was a keen cyclist, runner, swimmer and skier. She regularly participated in outdoor fitness sessions at 6 am and enjoyed trips to the Theatre.

Celia was a kind, caring and compassionate GP who was able to provide truly holistic care in the best tradition of General Practice. She often seemed to have a 6th sense for getting to the true cause of patients’ problems or sniffing out danger and acting on it. She was always available for advice to clinical and other practice staff. 

Celia was also a loving wife to Roger, mother to Emma, Bethan and Rhys and grandmother to Tomos and Henri. 

She will be sorely missed by all of those who were lucky enough to work with her over the past 38 years and get to know her as a friend and colleague. She will leave a huge hole in the life of our surgeries but of course our deepest sympathies extend to her family at this sad time
Shared by Bethan McMinn on March 26, 2021
It’s so hard to write this as the reality of losing such a wonderful woman in such a sudden, unexpected way has not really sunk in. I cannot imagine how your family are feeling and I am thinking of them a lot and wishing them all the strength and courage in the world. Thank you Celia for bringing so much joy and positivity into all our lives. You were always up for a laugh and a challenge and I had the honour of sharing many with you. The coast to coast event in Scotland stands out as one of the most memorable. I was always in awe of the fact that despite being many years my senior you were so much fitter and you had already had a few Proseccos by the time I finished :-) I also recall you deciding to cycle to Merthyr Mawr session because you’d heard others were doing it and you couldn’t miss out. Even though you admitted to me during the sandune session that you were starting to regret the decision to cycle, you still declined my offer of a lift home. You had to see things through and that’a one of the many qualities I admire about you. I’m not sure if I’ll ever meet such a headstrong, determined, fit and active, sociable woman with such a thirst for life and challenge as you. You are one of a kind and will be forever missed.

Goodbye Mum

Shared by Emma Williams on March 27, 2021
To our exceptional mum (our eulogy read at the funeral

…. from Emma, Bethan and Rhys

Our Mum’s life was exceptional in so many ways.

She was a loving, caring and devoted wife, daughter, sister, mother, mother in law and Nani. She was a compassionate, dedicated doctor, colleague, teacher, mentor and friend to so many. And of course she was a determined athlete taking up marathon running, cycling and triathlons in later life.

And yet, as exceptional as her life was, she never believed that what she did was more than any of us can do.

She shied away from any sort of recognition – we would often find out months later that she had won a triathlon or running event or received a prestigious award for her work as a GP trainer.She was never one to brag about her accomplishments. She was confident; focussed on her own goals and destination – but she was humble; she didn’t need to keep stopping to tell everyone where she was going.

As children, she taught us that we could do whatever we wanted to do in life and there were no limits on what we can achieve so long as we were willing to work hard and persevere.

Hard work was a defining feature of mum. Her work ethic was like no other – you can count on one hand the days she missed off work in 40 years and these few days off were accounted for following enforced recovery periods after back and knee surgery. If the recommended recovery period following a knee operation was 3 months, guaranteed mum would be walking after 3 days.

I remember as a little girl I broke my left arm (I am lefthanded – this is important to the story). It was a nasty break and I was in hospital for a week having metal plates put in my arm. Once I was out of hospital, I was absolutely fine but was hoping for a few extra days off school so I was incredulous when mum explained that I was perfectly well enough to go back to schoolimmediately. I pleaded that there was no point going to school as I couldn’t write anything anyway. Her response…..“you may not be able to write Emma, but you can listen” and off I went to school with Mum reminding me that you “get what you work for, not what you wish for.

As girls, she taught Bethan and I how to be independent, strong and fearless- she was an amazing role model, leading by example and showing us how to confidently be ourselves. Although the proportion of women studying medicine has made significant gains over the decades, female medical students were still in the minority when mum went to university. This did not stop mum who not only went on to be a well-respected GP, working full time at the same practice for 40 years whilst at the same time raising 3 children, she also mentored and trained countless GP registrars providing them with invaluable teaching and guidance so they could further their own careers and fulfil their own dreams.

Lots of people have said over the last few weeks that “her zest for life was contagious.” And so it was. She was 100 miles an hour, not wasting a second of life; filling every moment with family, friends, work and fun. Over the years our house at Lake Road East was a home that hosted numerous parties, countless meals, family gatherings and magical Christmas days full of food, board games, loveand laughter.

Mum never said no to a challenge and her gutsy determination was inspirational (and sometimes a little scary).I remember one year we had signed up to do the Snowdonia marathon – billed as the toughest marathon in Europe. It was late October and the weather was terrible, there was howling wind and torrential rain and significant numbers of people were dropping out the race. The idea of running a marathon in those conditions was awful and I suggested that perhaps we might want to reconsider this as, at the time, we were newbie runners after all. It probably wasn’t even safe I told her. However, quitting was never an option for mum and I remember her telling me that despite the fact that she was “so wet even her knickers were soaked through”that we were going to run it and that was that. So we did. And we lovedit and ran it again and again completing it together numerous times over subsequent years. I spoke to her friend recently and mum was apparently regaling this story about her “wet knickers”on their bike ride on the day she died – she did tell a good story!

Mum made everything fun – our long marathon training runs always ended with a hot chocolate and cake. Once she ran 26 miles to a Vineyard where she stopped for some wine tasting. This ended up being good practice for the marathon we ran in the medoc region of France a few years later, which involved 23 wine tasting stops along the course! If the Snowdon marathon was the hardest in Europe, this was definitely the longest….

Mum had a no-nonsense approach to life – just roll your sleeves up and get on with it. No messing, no fluffiness around the edges. She was “hardcore” as so many people would say yet she was thoughtful, loving and generous and always giving a little more kindness and love than was expected- because it was innate to her.

Mum treated everyone equally and was interested in everyone. She was inquisitive and curious –never afraid to ask questions that showed how much she cared. As a doctor she never gave up, always seeking the best for her patients and was relentless in her search for the underlying causes, answers, and remedies. She was always asking“what else might be going on?” to help explain undiagnosed conditions and was always going the extra mile. She undoubtedly saved countless lives.

As children, Mum was always our greatest supporter. There was a time when Bethan was competing in the Welsh Schools XC championships in the aftermath of a storm. The thick mud covering the course sapped her energy and she slid from side to side as she attempted to ascend the final incline, a narrow muddy track through some trees. Her legs felt like lead and she just couldn’t find her balance; her hopes of making the Welsh team began to quickly fade.....until Mum gave her a helping hand! She reached over the barrier separating the athletes from the spectators and proceeded to give her backside a loving, yet forceful push, helping her to scramble to the top.

In more recent years she supported and encouraged Bethan to follow her dreams and passions. She understood her wanderlust and never once made her feel guilty for living so far away. Instead, she would always look for the silver lining. That was her forte. For her, the physical distance was an opportunity to travel and have exciting adventures together. Bethan said she will never forget the times they shared a sunset yogasession on a rooftop in Kerala, getting lost in the souks of Tunis, climbing waterfalls in Okinawa, and their kayaking escapades in Langkawi.

Mum was always up for anything and would often say that she would try anything once apart from “incest and Morris dancing” which was her favourite quote, often attributed to Oscar Wilde. And Rhys can attest she stayed true to her word on this one!

Recently, Rhys has been spending his free time playing drums in a (very!) heavy metal group called “copehilldown”. Now mum certainly liked music, but more of the sort of ABBA and Celine Dion vibe. Meatloaf or Greenday was probably as heavy as it got for her.

Rhys’ band were billed to play a gig in a small venue called “fuel” in Cardiff, an exclusively heavymetal club containing all the delinquent look- a -likes you could think of. Mum was desperately keen to go, despite Rhysadvising against it as it “probably wasn’t her thing”. Rhys’band played a good set and managed to get a bit of a “mosh pit” going on. After the set one of Rhys’ close friends who attended ran up to him and saidI’m so sorry!!!” Shocked at his remark Rhys asked him what had happened and he told Rhys that mum had proceeded to enter the mosh pit area and had accidentally been elbowed by him in the face!! That was mum, always there to support and encourage her children in any way possible, even if it meant at the expense of her facial bones and ear drums.

As an adult, she became my best friend, advisor and confidante. Her greatest quality was to encourage me to make the best of everything and to face problems head on. She believed that there was no obstacle that couldn’t be overcome. Whenever I wasn’t sure about something, she was always my go to. Always. She was a problem solver…. minutes after my phone call she would be at my door saying “Right Emma…. Let’s think this through….”.  She never let me down. And she believed in all of us even when we did not believe in ourselves. It is hard to believe that she is no longer here to gently persuade us to do what we set out to do with a light but firm hand on our shoulder (or bottom in the case of Bethan).

On New Year’s Day morning this year we got up early and walked to the top of the Garth mountain to watch the sunrise. We sat there discussing all the trips we would have together this year once Covid restrictions were lifted and we could travel again. I can’t believe that we won’t have another adventure together but mum, I promise you we will live life like you did! We will dream big, stay positive, work hard and enjoy the journey until the very end.

As we all start new chapters of our lives, Rhys and Jess getting married, Bethan moving to Seoul and Tomosstarting high school, it breaks our hearts that she won’t be part of these new adventures but we will all treasure the memories we have.

She was a shining example of the very best in humanity and the world is a poorer place without her. She is gone far too soon but she has left an imprint on this world that will never be forgotten.

And as for Bethan, Rhys and I….. JK Rowling said it best “Love as powerful as your mother’s for you leaves its own mark. To have been loved so deeply, even though the person who loved us is gone, will give us some protection forever

As one of her friends recently said, wherever she is, I hope she is still up at 6am to do squats and burpees before work.

Cysga’ndawel mam.

xxxx