Ernest B Thompson III 1936 - 2015

Ernest B Thompson III was born November 22, 1936 at the Reed Hospital in Bethany, Mo. and passed away unexpectedly in Palo Alto, California on July 22, 2105.  His father was Ernest B "Preach" Thompson, Jr. and his mother was Maurine Sloan Thompson who both graduated from Cameron High School. His father  "Preach", assisted by his aunt Grace, for many years ran Thompson's Men’s Wear in Bethany.  Before his parents moved from Bethany, Maurine was a Home Economics Teacher at Cameron H.S. and Preach worked at Stucker's Clothing Store in downtown Cameron.

Ernest was baptized and confirmed in the Bethany Methodist Church and his paternal grandfather Ernest B Thompson, Sr. and his uncle Joseph W. Thompson were Methodist ministers. His maternal grandfather G. Roy Sloan, great uncle Craig and cousin "Hawker" Sloan for many decades owned the Sloan Monument Shop. It was started in 1872 by Ernest's great grandfather, W.G. Sloan and is the oldest business in Cameron.

Before graduating from Bethany H.S. in 1954, Ernest worked at Hy-Vee Food Store then located on the City Square in Bethany and clerked at his Dad's store. He went on to earn a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Iowa State, and a M.A. from the University of Missouri where he also was an Instructor. He was an honor ROTC Cadet at Iowa State and before embarking on a corporate career served his country as a Communications and Electronics Officer in the U.S. Air Force.

His business accomplishments include C.P. A. and Manager, Arthur Andersen Co., New York, Assistant Corporate Controller NCR Corp., Dayton, Ohio, Vice President and Controller, Amdahl Corp., Sunnyvale, Calif. and later he was involved with venture capitalist endeavors. Some of Ernest’s business affiliations were National Accounting Advisory Boards and he served as President of the San Francisco Institute of Financial Executives.

In addition to his successful business career, Ernest had extensive involvement in many social and charitable organizations such as the Kappa Sigma Fraternity, Half Moon Bay, Calif. Yacht Club and Board of Directors officer and fund raiser for the Santa Clara County, Calif. Center for Prevention of Child Abuse. His father for many years was Scout Master of Troop 100, Bethany, Mo., where Ernest together with his brother Roy attained the rank of Eagle Scout. As a Boy Scout, Ernest was honored to be selected for the order of Mic-O-Say, Pony Express Council. He maintained a lifelong commitment to the Boy Scouts and was Scout Master of Troop 255, Half Moon Bay, where his son, Ernest IV also attained the Rank of Eagle Scout. 

In his personal life, Ernest had unlimited range of curiosity and a compelling desire for knowledge. He traveled extensively and enjoyed skiing, archery, squash, and rifle marksmanship. Ernest was also was an opera and classical music buff, piano player, superb bridge player, lifelong avid reader and student of science, history, humor and many other subjects, an antique car mechanic, skilled wood and electrical craftsman and researcher of his family genealogy.

Ernest embraced life with an iron will to succeed and exuberance of spirit. While gifted with a broad range of unique talents, what might best define Ernest’s life was his dedication to his country and community, faith, extraordinary kindness, great humility, keen sense of humor together with his boundless love for his family, large circle of friends and Missouri heritage. His passion in caring for his wife and nurturing his son was remarkable. 

His burial is at the Evergreen Cemetery in Cameron along side his parents, grandparents and many ancestors. Ernest led a life rich in timeless values, meaning and purpose and left the world a better place. Now the celestial trumpets are sounding for him on the other side as he hears the welcoming exclamation, “Ernest, a job well done.” 

He is survived by his son, Ernest B Thompson IV of Moss Beach, Calif., brother Roy Sloan Thompson and wife Jean of Ft. Pierce, Fla., sister Virginia Ann Watson and husband Will of Berryville Va., niece Dr. Lisa Marie Thompson of Berkeley, Calif. and her children Olivia and Camilo, numerous cousins, other relatives and friend Wendy Taylor of San Mateo, Calif. He was preceded by his wife of over 43 years, Virginia Boland Thompson, his parents, Ernest B Jr. and Maurine Sloan Thompson and nephew Evan Sloan Thompson.


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