Hank Williams Jr.’s Wife Died After Cosmetic Surgery

@officialhankjr via Instagram

Not all surgery is created equal. Some types of surgery are essential in order to save or prolong someone’s life. Other types of surgery are optional. They may improve the quality of life but won’t necessarily prolong someone’s life. Then there are cosmetic procedures that are completely voluntary and not at all necessary to prolong someone’s life.

We usually think of cosmetic surgery as fairly safe. Obviously there are some risks involved with any surgery, but getting a procedure like liposuction or a nose job isn’t usually something where people worry if they’re going to survive or not.

In March, 2022, former model Mary Jane Thomas traveled from Tennessee to Jupiter, Florida, to have several cosmetic surgery procedures including having her breast implants removed and having liposuction on her arms, back, and stomach. The procedures were completed on March 21, and everything seemed to be fine at first.

Thomas returned to her hotel to recover after surgery. The very next day, her plastic surgeon, Dr. Harold Bafitis, visited her at her hotel for a routine follow-up visit. While he was at the hotel, all of a sudden, Thomas become unresponsive. She was sitting up in bed at the time.

Thomas was rushed to the emergency room at Jupiter Medical Center, and she was pronounced dead an hour after she lost consciousness. She was only 58 years old. According to the autopsy, cause of death was a collapsed lung that was caused by the surgery she had undergone the previous day. The Palm Beach County Medical Examiner considers Thomas’s death to be an accident related to cosmetic surgery. 

Thomas married Hank Williams Jr. in 1990. The couple had two children together, and Williams Jr. also had three children from previous marriages. Thomas’s daughter, Katherine Williams, died in a car crash in 2020 when she was just 27 years old.

After his mother’s death, Samuel Williams shared a tribute to his late mother. In a statement to PEOPLE, he explained, “My dear Mama Mary Jane was a beautiful soul who forever affected everyone who knew her. She had a smile and presence that lit up every room and she never met a stranger she didn’t befriend. Her spirit was gentle and giving. She could take down a ten-point buck and fix dinner for her grandchildren at the same time! Now she gets to radiate from above with my sister Katherine Diana right by her side.”

Thomas is survived by her husband and her son.