S: The John W. Crompton Legacy
FC: John Washington Crompton | The Legacy of
1: In Dedication "He's My Dad." | To my Dad, thanks for raising me with the most important advise of "no matter what you do, as long as you're happy, that's what counts" Thanks for all your inspiration on achieving and making the most of your life. | From Your Proud Daughter Number 3: Cecilia Kay
2: John Crompton was born Feb. 20, 1933 in Binghamton, NY. At 6 months old, he was adopted by Bertha and Guy Crompton of Starlight, PA. They had a 3 acre farmette with a 3 story house and small barn. Bertha ran house, raised chickens, and took in summer boarders who did roadwork while Guy worked on a diary farm. Bertha was born and raised in Liberty, NY. As an adult, she worked at a hospital in Birmingham. She was known to be a fine, hard working country gal. In her garden, Guy would plant a row of peonies, her favorite flower. A favorite childhood story was that when John was 4 yrs old, Guy took him frog hunting, and in the kitchen, he knocked the bucket over and frogs got loose in the house. Sadly, in 1939, Guy was trampled by a mad horse and later had passed away. In 1940, Bertha and John moved to Hancock, then onto Honesdale, PA where she raised John. They were very devoted to each other. John spent much time working in a projection booth at local theatres, something he loved to do his whole life, even up until his retirement from Walt Disney World, FL. | The Story of John W. Crompton
3: John Washington Crompton born Feb. 20, 1933 Binghamton, New York | John's mother, Bertha Hunt Crompton 1882 - 1960
4: The Wedding License of Jacob and Melissa Van Orden Hunt | Bertha Hunt Crompton with John and Jean | Bertha's Parents: Jacob Hunt and Melissa Van Orden | Jacob Hunt Born April 14, 1840 | Melissa Van Orden Born July 16, 1850
5: The Jacob Hunt Family History | "Aunt Gusty" Hunt | Hattie and Marvin Hunt
6: Guy Crompton John’s Father | John's father was born Nov. 29, 1894. He worked on a Dairy farm and was Bertha’s second husband. He passed away in 1939 at the age of 45. | Guy Crompton’s WWI Selective Service Registration
7: Article of Guy's Death | Guy Crompton ‘s Obituary and Funeral Program
8: John as a toddler; he was doted on by his mother Bertha. | 1950 John got bike for newspaper route. He worked hard to support himself and Bertha. Behind him up steps is apartment in Honesdale, PA. It was located along the river and nearly flooded once. | Childhood Pictures of John | 1951 - High School Trip to Washington DC. John's favorite memory was riding the street trolley; it was so crowded, he stood behind the motor man who let him operate the signals. He also liked the fountain in front of the Library of Congress
9: 1950 – Boy Scouts; John was his pack’s representative at the National Boy Scout Jamboree in Valley Forge, PA. | He got to see President Truman drive by in a convertible and wave. The President spoke at Jamboree that year.
10: John went to Honesdale High School in PA. He joined the Projector’s Club headed by Mr. Joyce Avery . When teachers needed to show a film in class, John would set up the equipment if he was in study hall. He would get the key, unlock store room, and get out the projector and screen on a cart and set it up for teachers. He loved working with projectors so much; in the summer of 1950 he got an apprentice license to work at local movie theatres. He also got lead in the Senior Play. John graduated from Honesdale High School in 1951. | John’s Education | Honesdale High School
11: High School Memories | Items from John's Senior Yearbook
12: John's College Years | Thaddeus Stevens Trade School | After high school graduation, John attended Stevens Trade School from 1951 – 1954 where he took up drafting.
13: John graduated near the top of his class and gave a speech at Commencement. For his last two years, he had learned Calligraphy, and penned the student’s names on all the diplomas. He even lettered his own diploma.
14: John's Commencement Speech | Given at Baccalaureate, June 27, 1954
16: John enlisted into the army for a 3 year “Hitch” from Oct. 1954 – Oct 1957. He tested in basic training and was offered OTC -“Officer Training Candidate”. He could have worked up to Colonel. Tho he decided not to, he did wonder where he’d be if he did. His life turned out very well, none the less. His MOS was draftsman and he was stationed at Camp Cordon, GA, and then Fort Huachuca, AZ. He stated the Mexican Border was on the other side of the mountain. Here, he corresponded with Jean whom he met in 1955. He left the Army as Specialist 3rd class, E5. After leaving the Army, John got a job at the Hendrik Company as a draftsman. Then, in 1959, the Air Force began recruiting prior enlisted men. They offered no basic training, and John could pick his school of choice. He chose Ground Communications when he enlisted in December, 1959. He did two 4 – year “Hitches” with the Air Force until 1967. He started in school at Keesler AFB in MI and then transferred to Tyndall AFB , Panama City, FL, until 1960. He was then stationed in Sagalak Bay, Labrador, Canada. It was an “early warning radar base” on a coastal island. Below the MPR tower, he use to sit on edge of cliffs, feet dangling, 1200 ft above the ocean with field binoculars watching seals play. He spoke of an accident where a vehicle went over cliff with two passengers due to “white out” fog like he’d never seen before. | John’s Years of Service in the US Military
17: However in 1960, Bertha took ill with cancer from a tumor on the side of her neck. John packed up all his belongings and had to wait three days to catch a Military Air Transport plane off the island. Bertha had a Military Dependent ID card, and the Red Cross had contacted him when she was placed in a nursing home. Her case worker was Mrs. Usa, and John was told “she wasn’t leaving, likely”. So John closed their apartment, sold the furniture to the neighbors, and gave all of Bertha’s pictures to her brother, his Uncle Marvin Hunt. After six months, she quietly passed away. During these months, John was stationed at Stewart AFB in NY. He was given two consecutive 3-Day Passes the week of her funeral. Bertha was buried beside Guy at Riverview Cemetery, Honesdale, NY. John and Jean were married at the chapel on Stewart AFB. While stationed there, Barbara and Susan were born at West Point. In Jan. 1964, John and the family were transferred to Goodfellow AFB in Texas where he continued in school. Cecee was born that year. He went into the security service of Classified Communications. He was sent to Pakistan serving in the beginnings of the Indo/Pakistani War for six months in Peshawar, the capital of West Pakistan. He was stationed six miles from the India border. He remembers the “lights out” conditions and broken windows from the anti-aircraft shot by the Pakistanis. One time while operating the Projection Booth at the Base theatre, and earthquake struck, and he rushed out onto the roof to “jump into a bush”. He came home and brought with him many beautiful Pakistani souvenirs such as elaborate hand cut brass ware and carved items from local wood. He still has them to this day. In 1965 the family moved to Biloxi, MI, to the Keesler AFB where he built a house on Shore Drive. He left the Air Force in 1967 after 8 years as Staff Sgt E6.
18: Trip to Starlight, PA 1978 John took the family to PA to visit his childhood home. He showed the girls where his parents were buried; it was before the headstone was set, but was a quiet, pretty place. | Riverside Cemetery, Honesdale, PA | On a quiet hillside in 1939, Guy was buried here after passing from his injuries. In 1960, Bertha was laid beside him. In later years, a fine headstone graced their resting place.
19: Location of the house and small farmette where Guy and Bertha lived. | John standing in front of Starlight Lake; he spoke of crossing a bridge where someone could place a board to effect the depth of the lake. | The Starlight Railroad Station The paved road use to be the bed for the track | Starlight, PA John's Childhood Home
20: Very Special People in John’s Life | Cecil and Hazel Faling | Since John’s father Guy died when he was young, his Uncle Cecil became his father figure and mentor. Cecil and his wife Hazel were very special people in his life. In fact, it was how Cecilia got her name. It was said Cecil was “tickled to death” having someone named after him.
21: John's First Wife - Wilma Jean Bridges It was November 4th, 1955. John was at the Mammoth Air Force Base; he heard a rumor a bus was “shipping fresh young woman” from Trenton State Teacher’s College for a dance. It turned out Wilma Jean Bridges was on that bus. She was wearing a black velvet scoop neck jumper with a red boatneck shirt. She and her three companions came up with a game who’d get asked in what order to dance. While there, John approached Jean, asking her for a dance, making her second to be requested. They traded names and after one dance, he bought her a soft drink, and they spent the rest of the evening talking.
22: John and Jean Married July 22, 1961 | July 22, 1961 John and Jean get married at the Stewart Air Force Base, New York | John and Jean’s Marriage License
23: In Texas, Jean with her older daughters Barbara Jean and Susan Margaret. In this picture she’s expectant with Cecee. | The Bridal Party – Best Man: Drew, Matron of Honor: Jean Gallagher, Usher, Jean’s brother Walter | While living in Texas, John was sent overseas to Pakistan to serve during the Indo-Pakistani Wars. He brought home brass vases and carved artifacts that graced every house he lived in
24: Having Babies | Barbara Jean b. Feb. 20th, 1962 Susan Margaret b. April 13th, 1963 Cecilia Kay b. June 11th, 1964
25: After getting married at Stewarts AFB and having two babies at Westpoint, NY, John and Jean moved to Texas to Goodfellow AFB in Jan. 1964. There they had their third child. They lived there until John was transferred to Keesler AFB in Biloxi, MI; he left the Military in 1967.
26: Once arriving in Missippi, John and Jean rented a small white house in Ocean Springs on Hickory Drive. It was near a railroad track where the girls loved watching trains go by. Later, on Shove Drive in Biloxi, John finally had his life long dream of building and owning his own house. He built an amazing back yard for the girls to enjoy.
27: Life in Mississippi | Some memories: The picture with John and the three matching dresses, Cecee remembers being taken to show the neighbors and hated having to wear the tights. Hurricane Camille had come through and washed out a bridge around the corner; Jean dressed up as Santa one Christmas, and Barb and Susan use to put Cecee in the toy box and sit on the lid.
28: After leaving the military in 1967, John had up to five job offers, one that even could have taken the family to Boston, MA. He settled on a job with Control Data in Arlington, VA where he taught computer electronics. It was then the family moved to Falls Church, VA and rented a small, white Cape Cod house on Meadow Lane. | It was a great house. The back yard had two beautiful apple trees great for climbing, and John put a white swing set under one. Susan got caught in the tree on the seesaw swing. John put a above ground pool on the back cracked, cement patio. The family would spend many hours swimming, and John would squeeze water out of one hand.
29: The family lived here until Aug. 1970 while their house in Greenbriar was being built. | The next door neighbors, the Westfalls, had a huge Willow tree many hours were spent playing under. Their son Eric was a contant playmate. His older sister Wendy and her friend Diane would babysit. John's girls befriended the Brown Girls of Lucy and Bill, Kathy, Lori, and Tracy, who all lived across the street. Little Jeanie lived next door, and a nice elderly couple with a rose garden lived two doors down.
30: 13310 Penny Packer Lane | In August 1970, the Cromptons moved to a subdivision called Greenbriar where their house was built. near Chantilly, Virginia
31: The Cromptons lived here from Aug. 1970 - Aug. 1973. John worked at Control Data teaching binary computer language and part time running the projector room at the Roth Theaters in Annandale, Va. He was very proud of this house and decorated it beautifully. Many memories of smock dresses, tights, granny dresses, and mini pantsuits were what the early 70's were all about for the girls.
32: It was around this time when Jean became involved in Girl Scouts. Left is the Ladies at the Juliet Low (founder of GS) Birthplace in Savannah, GA the family visited on a return trip from Florida. | Life in Northern Virginia | Soon the Jean had the girls into Brownies and Juniors, and plenty of camping and hiking to suit!
33: Most of the favorite memories was when the family went to the Skyline Drive for all day trips. They would go "to the mountains" often, and stop in the town of Shenandoah, VA to get ice cream at a local Tastee Freeze. This introduced the family to the beauty of the Shenandoah Valley. | Jean was an avid Backpacker, Hiker, and took the girls on a multitude of camping trips teaching them to enjoy the outdoors. They were very active in Girl Scouts. John's love of historic Railroads and Canal also added to the great appreciation of local history.
34: August 1973 Harrisonburg, VA Within the five years of living the high pace of Northern Virginia, the owners of Roth Theaters offered John a matching salary to open the Roth 1-2-3 in Harrisonburg. After getting a mortgage approved to build a new house, the family moved to rented townhouse at 588 Long Ave. It was a happy move into the Shenandoah Valley they've come to love by visiting the Skyline Drive and Blue Ridge Mountains
35: February 1975 Keezletown, VA On a stretch of Keezletown Road, the Cromptons bought a beautiful acre and John designed and had built a yellow (of course!) Dutch Colonial 4 Bedroom House. It was just a shell when the family moved into it, but within over a year, John had it fully decorated, wood trim, wall paper, carpet, you name it, he proudly did it. It was a beautiful place to live.
36: From 1975 - 1982 the Cromptons lived in Keezletown; the girls went to Keezletown Elementary, Montevideo Intermediate and Spotswood Senior High School. John continued to work at Roth Theaters | All three girls went through their adolescent years here in Keezletown. They moved here as young girls and left here as young women. We're still not sure how John survived it.
37: At one time during the early 80's, the entire family worked for Roth Theaters. John eventually became the district manager for the Shenandoah Valley area.
38: From 1984 - 1985, Cecee had Kimmy all to herself while living in VA, but she soon realizedit was better for Kimmy to live in FL with Jean and John. She was very attached to her.. | Sadly, by 1986 and likely the age of 16, Kimmy had developed a brain tumor over her left eye. As she aged, it grew larger causing the fur to turn white and on Dec. 5, 1986, after 14 years gracing our family, we had to make the very hard decision to let her go. When Jean came home, she found John, a gold hearted tough-on-the outside guy, out in the back yard in tears, digging a place for Kimmy. She was buried beneath a beautiful tree with white blossoms. She will always be cherished.
39: Cannonball Country Kimmy Cat Crompton | The World's Greatest Cat | You couldn't find a cat more loved than Kimmy. She came into the Crompton's lives Sept. 10, 1972 after being found by Karen McKimmie (her namesake) on a GS camping trip. She got her name by various means; when she'd jump down from behind the faux fire place at Penny Packer Lane, she sounded like a cannonball. In Keezletown, she loved roaming the country side. In 1980, she was hit by a car, and had her left hip reconstructed. You never met a more wonderful, loving, patient creature. She was adored by the whole family, and a cherished pet for 14 years.
40: The Early 1980's These wee some of the happiest years. John and Jean even let the girls have the car to drive to FL to see Grandma on their own. By 1982, the family had portraits made. | Those girls were always up to something, like father, like daughters...
41: Barbara 1980 | High School Graduations | Susan 1981 | Cecilia 1982
42: Back in 1972, John tried getting on at Disney when the Magic Kingdom first opened. By 1982, with Roth, John had since become District Manager to Theater Engineer. That year Disney opened the EPCOT Center, and he was hired fulfilling a lifelong dream to work for Mickey. He moved to Orlando in 1982 while Jean stayed behind for10 months with Susan and Cecilia while Barbara had moved to Utah to attend BYU. In 1983, Jean joined John in Florida where they built a house at 942 California Woods Circle. By 1985, Barbara and Susan moved to FL as well while Cecilia kept her roots in the Valley of Virginia. | 1983 Orlando, FL
43: By 1984, John was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes; he lost a lot of weight, but it certainly didn't slow his life down. Jean got a job with Disney, and it became a life long career for both. Many very happy memories were made as the years went by, and the girls were always coming "home" for visits. Even with his Disney career, John couldn't stay away from the projection booth and spent much time working at a local theater. His love for model railroad continued as well.
44: John's Hobby Becomes His Career | After EPCOT was finished, John became a maintenance man, and wasn't happy, for he's a man to create. After a neighbor saw his outdoor model railroad layout and the extreme talent John had, John was given a job in the Disney Production Department. He worked on store displays and specialized in animation and fiber optics. He built amazing displays he was very proud of. He would always say to people, "Would you believe they pay me to do this?" How lucky can one be!
45: John was continuously in demand to create model railroad layouts in retail environments. These pictures show the the plexiglass shelving and 1000 feet of LGB track that ran through three rooms of the You and Me Kids Shop in the Disney Village. Bachmann Trains liked his HO floor layout so much, they gave his department $40,000 to build a G guage layout.
46: It began with an outdoor layout using the largest railroad model you could buy. Once completed, John sold his incredible town to build his dream: a train you could ride on. Did he do it? Of course!! | The Ultimate in Model Railroad
47: It took a few years, but soon enough, John had it where the track went around the entire house; he even built a trestle over the drainage ditch! He had an engine, a coal car you could pull the coal for two people to sit, a cattle car (with a mooing mechanism, even) and a caboose. It was an amazing feat. One thing John loved to say was after he'd put the train away, the mooing mechanism would still swing, and every so often you'd hear a quiet "mooo" from the rail house. He went on to sell this train for several thousand dollars. | "Would you believe this??? Wow,he's my Dad!"
48: From Babies to Brides | John and Jean 1961 | John and Regina 1996 | Barbara and Jerry 1996 | Susan and Frank 1998 | Cecee and Mike 1992
49: Barbara Jean Feb. 20, 1962 Susan Margaret April 13, 1963 Cecilia Kay June 11, 1964 | 1965 | 1967 | 1969 | 1971 | 1973 | 1976 | 1982 | 1996 | 2005 | 2005
50: By 1994, John met a very special lady, Regina; she was a clerk in a Disney Christmas Shoppe where John was fixing the Toy RailRoad She's also from Pennsylvania. They came to really care for one another, so Love came, and in 1996, they married... | 3 | 96 | 3
51: The Girls have come to love Regina, who is the Worlds Greatest Nana to the grand kids; She has easily become a very cherished member of the Crompton Family
52: On Sept. 27th, 1996, Barbara married Jerry Brull in Orlando, FL. There they had their first child, a son named Mysyk Wales. | They moved to Manitowoc, WI and had a second child, a girl named Hollie Jean. | Jerry joined the military and served in Afghanistan | Barbara
53: Life proves well for them. Two kids couldn't ask for more devoted parents.
54: Susan ended up moving to California where she met Frank Sherman; they married in 1998, had two sons, Daniel and Scott, and built a house in Herriman, Utah. Later on they adopted Jean, a girl from foster care, and together became a family. | Susan
55: Susan and Frank make amazing parents. They travel over the West Coast introducing the kids to great places like Yellowstone, passing on the appreciation of nature, history, and railroads. Also passing on the proud tradition of Scouting, Susan happily became a den leader for Scott and Daniel. Lucky kids, indeed.
56: Cecee stayed in Harrisonburg; in 1987 she met Mike Hawkins, and on July 4th, 1992 they married. Sept.26, 1996 they had Allison. They bought a house in Broadway in 1997, and in 1999, they had Grayson who completed the family. They've spent many happy years in this home, and plan on spending many more. Cecee couldn't have been blessed with a better husband and father t0 her children she adores. | Cecilia
58: The Crompton Family Disney Magical Gathering June 2005 | It was a joyous occasion. The entire family came together with all the grandchildren and had a wonderful time!
59: What made it more special that on Family Day, June 19th, it was both Father's Day and Jean's Birthday. It was one Family Reunion to be remembered. | Tho John and Jean and gone separate ways, each became happily married. Even more special is the friendship created. The finest of folks, really. | Lew and Jean | Regina and John "Pop Pop and Nana"
60: I love trains | Enjoying Retirement John and Regina both retired from Disney and moved to a lovely house in the Whispering Pines Retirement Community | Of course, John continued his love for his hobbies, and Regina, the eternally patient, wonderful wife, let John have the den for a few years to pursue his movies and trains.
61: John created yet another incredibly detailed layout, "Autumn in Pennsylvania". They'd invite Jean and Lew for a visit. The ladies chatted while the men male-bonded over the train tracks.
62: John's Outdoor Coal Mining Town Again, John creates another incredible work of art. He proudly put together a cold mining town like Mt. Plymoth, PA. The family looked forward to every visit to see his latest work!
63: Many hours of work went into the immense detail of John's work. He even built a three foot feed mill. And yes, after all this wondrous work, John sold it for a new project!
64: A Very Special Thing John Does John became involved in a very worthy project volunteering his talents to a special organization creating trains for sick kids | Train Layout in the Main Lobby
67: John also took a donated old train from a mall and fixed it up into an amazing ride by also laying the track ; it's the pride of the park.
68: Of course when the girls come down to visit, they don't mind seeing Pop Pop's amazing work! | Proud or our Pop Pop!!
69: Though happily retired,John serves the community and organizations through his work; here he's giving a seminar on Model Railroad Plastic Buildings. He has also given his talent to public model railroad layouts such as the one here displayed at the Holiday Inn, Buena Vista, FL. | So here you have it, the amazing legacy of John Washington Crompton Thanks, Dad, for teaching and inspiring your girls to make the most out of life. We Love You | Happy Father's Day 2011 | Love, Cecee, Mike Allison and Grayson