Peter Thomas (announcer)

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Peter Thomas
Peter Thomas Voiceover Artist.jpg
Born Peter Addenbrooke Thomas
June 28, 1924
Pensacola, Florida, U.S.
Died April 30, 2016 (aged 91)
Naples, Florida, U.S.
Residence Naples, Florida
Occupation Narrator
Known for Documentary and advertisement voice-over work
Spouse(s) Stella Barrineau (m. 1946; her death 2014)
Children 3
Parent(s) John Thomas
Sibyl Addenbrooke

Peter Addenbrooke Thomas[1] (June 28, 1924 – April 30, 2016[2]) was an American announcer and narrator of television programs, including shows such as Nova[3] and Forensic Files.[4]

Biography[edit]

Thomas was born in Pensacola, Florida,[5] to John D. Thomas and Sibyl Addenbrooke. He had two younger brothers, John and David. His Welsh father, a Presbyterian minister, and his English mother, a schoolteacher from Salisbury, stressed the importance of reading, education, and memorization to their son. Thomas says that his father always stressed mental images as an important speaking tool. For example, he told his son if he were talking about horses he had to picture horses in his mind.

Thomas began his career at fourteen as an announcer on a local radio show.[6] Since the station could not pay him, due to his age, they arranged for the sponsor, Piper Aircraft, to give him flying lessons in a Piper Cub. Within just a few years, Thomas would be hosting Big Band remotes.

With the onset of World War II, Thomas left The Stony Brook School and volunteered for the United States Army in 1943, after being offered an Armed Forces Radio deferment, and served with the First Infantry Division in five major campaigns, including the Battle of Normandy and the Battle of the Bulge. He was issued a Battle star for each of the five campaigns. He was also awarded the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, the Unit French Croix de guerre, and Belgian Fourragère.

Thomas received many awards for his work but cited, as one of his best, the Oscar won by a documentary he narrated, One Survivor Remembers. The film, produced by HBO, chronicles the personal experience of Gerda Weissman Klein, who was interned at the Nordhausen Concentration Camp when she was a teenager; Thomas' unit participated in the liberation of Nordhausen. Klein and Thomas met during the post-production of the documentary, and again at its premiere. Thomas also participated in an HBO film on the Battle of Hürtgen Forest, in which he fought with the 1st Infantry Division (United States). Thomas was also the narrator for a miniseries that ran on The Discovery Channel in 1993 entitled How the West was Lost. Thomas was the narrator for the two-hour Nova[7] episode entitled D-Day's Sunken Secrets,[8] broadcast May 28, 2014, just before the 70th anniversary of the D-Day landings; he participated in the original D-Day landing on Omaha Beach.

Thomas was married to Stella (Barrineau) Thomas until her 2014 death, and lived in Naples, Florida. He was involved in work with veterans, having served on the board of the National D-Day Memorial Foundation and in other similar roles.

He worked at his home and, through ISDN, at recording studios throughout the United States. Also using ISDN, he continued narrating at recording studios in New York City, where he worked for the bulk of his narration career. Before pursuing narration full-time, he was a New York anchor for CBS News. He continued to keep an apartment in midtown Manhattan for recordings that required his presence there. Thomas also recorded in many European capitals.

Death[edit]

Thomas died on April 30, 2016, at the age of 91.[1][2]

Other notable work[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]