Hank Williams Jr.'s Wife Mary Jane Thomas' Cause of Death Released

Hank Williams Jr.'s wife Mary Jane Thomas died from a collapsed lung following an elective surgery the day before. More than four months after Thomas was found unresponsive on March 22, the Palm Beach County Medical Examiner on Monday, July 25 released Thomas' cause of death, officially ruling the 58-year-old's passing accidentally.

The findings were revealed in the Medical Examiner's report and an autopsy report, both of which were obtained by PEOPLE. Per the autopsy, Thomas' official cause of death has been listed as "pneumothorax due to perforated parietal pleura during liposuction with autologous fat reinjection procedure." The autopsy report listed seven other findings, including mild brain swelling, mild coronary artery disease and fatty metamorphosis of the liver, which is common in people with a history of alcoholism.

The reports revealed that Thomas, a former model who lived in Nashville, traveled to Jupiter, Florida in March to undergo liposuction and also have previous breast implants removed at Bafitis Plastic Surgery. According to the Medical Examiner, Thomas had been cleared for the procedures by a physician back home. However, while Thomas was released from the facility around 7 p.m. on March 21, and was taken to a recovery facility, the following day, she was "sitting up in bed, speaking normally" when she "suddenly" became unresponsive. Thomas was rushed to a local hospital and died in the emergency room.

Thomas' official cause of death was ruled as "pneumothorax due to perforated parietal pleura during liposuction with autologous fat reinjection procedure," with the autopsy determining that Thomas suffered a collapsed lung after her surgeon punctured her parietal pleura membrane while completing the fat transfer as part of a breast lift following a breast implant removal. Per Science Direct, the parietal pleura is a membrane "that lines the central portion of each diaphragm" and is bound by connective tissue to the inner surface of the chest wall. It plays a major role in the formation and removal of pleural fluid. A representative for Bafitis Plastic Surgery did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.


Thomas, a former model, and Williams Jr., 72, tied the knot in 1990 after first meeting at one of his concerts in 1985. In 2007, Williams filed for divorce from Thomas after 16 years of marriage. However, they reconciled in 2011 when they marked their 21st wedding anniversary. The couple shared two children together, son Sam Williams and daughter Katie Williams-Dunning, who died in 2020 in a car accident in Tennessee. Thomas is survived by Williams, Sam, and three grandchildren.