S: Leroy Joseph Thompson, Jr.
BC: December 2011 Created by Darlene Boggs Photos by Larry Boggs
FC: A Celebration of Life and Homecoming | Leroy Joseph Thompson, Jr. | June 22, 1941 - March 4, 2011
2: When tomorrow starts without me, please try to understand
3: That Jesus came and called my name and took me by the hand.
4: And when I walked through heaven’s gates, I felt so much at home.
5: When God looked down | and smiled at me from his golden throne.
6: He said
7: This is eternity and all I’ve promised you. Today your life on earth is past and here it starts anew. I promise no tomorrows, but today will always last. And since each day’s the same, there’s no longing for the past. You have been faithful, so trusting and true. Though there were times you did some things you knew you shouldn’t do. But you have been forgiven, and now at last you’re free. So won’t you take my hand and share My life with me?
8: So when tomorrow starts without me,
9: don’t think we’re far apart.
10: For every time you think of me,
11: I’m right here in your heart.
12: Obituary Leroy Thompson, Jr., affectionately known as “Jr,” “J.R.,” or “Hardrock,” was born on June 22, 1941, in Valley Lee, Maryland, to the late Leroy Thompson, Sr. and Catherine Shelton Thompson, and died on March 4, 2011. Jr. started his formal education at St. Peter Claver School and graduated from Cardinal Gibbons High School in June 1959. He enlisted in the United States Air Force in November 1959, completed his basic training at Lackland AFB in San Antonio, Texas, and was stationed at multiple locations including New Jersey, California, and Europe. Jr. received an honorable discharge after serving 5 years. After returning home from the service, Jr. worked at Dick’s Grocery Store; and, for a number of years, was the proprietor of Happyland Bar and Thompson’s Foodway. Jr. learned the fine art of butchering while working at Thompson’s Foodway, a trade that he used at family gatherings throughout his lifetime. In August 1978, Jr. began working for the St. Mary’s County Board of Education. He held various positions throughout his 25 years with the school system, including his final position as Equipment Repairman III, in charge of his own department. This job allowed Jr., on an everyday basis, to do one of the things that he loved – maintaining and repairing electrical equipment. He retired from the Board of Education in June 2004. Jr. had many times stated: “I like making things out of junk, etc.” Very early on, Jr. had a passion for creating art work including making money origami, jewelry, lamps, and aluminum can art. Jr. was especially known for making homemade cards for all occasions. His most recent love was digital photography. Jr. found great pride and joy in cropping the heads of family and friends and putting them in unexpected places. His works of art are displayed throughout the homes of his family and friends.
13: An active member of the UCAC (Unified Committee for Afro-American Contributions) Historical Committee, Jr. was very instrumental in working with the St. Mary’s County Division of Tourism to develop the brochure titled “African American Sites in St. Mary’s County.” Jr. also worked tirelessly as the official photographer for the Citizens for Elfreda Mathis campaign committee to create and design campaign advertisements. A long-standing member and usher of St. George Catholic Church, Jr.’s religious beliefs were evident in his interactions with both family and friends. Jr. leaves to cherish his memory: his mother, Catherine Thompson; his daughters, Monique Coates Johnson (Roy) and Nocola Thompson Williams (Quincy); his grandchildren, Justin DeLoatch, Joshua Coates, Corrine Williams, Quinten Williams, Jaiden Johnson, and Jamison Johnson; his siblings Dolores Cooper (James), Alma Jordon, James Thompson, Theresa Turner, Brenda Coates, Joyce Blackwell (Wayne), Robert Thompson, Harry Thompson (Melody), Kendall Thompson (Maureen), Dorothy Waters (Tommy), Darlene Boggs (Larry), and Robin Johnson (Eugene); his special niece, Tania Jordon; his aunt, Agnes Shelton; and a host of nieces, nephews, and cousins. He also leaves to cherish his memory the following special friends: Melva Ann Coates (mother of Monique), Barbara Ann Forrest Thompson (whom he married on August 19, 1968, and mother of Nocola), Irene Gross, Bernard Thompson, Joseph Price, Francis Fenwick, and Lenny Quade. Family and friends were extremely important to Jr. No matter the occasion, he could always be counted on to lend a helping hand to a parent, a daughter, a brother, a sister, a niece, a nephew, a cousin, a child, or a friend. Regardless of the tasks, he would simply nod his head – indicating he knew what needed to be done – and get down to work. He was indeed a man of few words, but great deeds. In describing his best trait, Jr. once wrote, “Doing favors for others and saying ‘No Charge’”
14: To Dad We can shed tears that you are gone Or we can smile because you lived. We can close our eyes and pray that you come back Or we can open our eyes and see all that you have left. Our hearts can be empty because we cannot see you Or we can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday. We can remember you and only that you are gone Or we can cherish your memory and let it live on. We can cry and close our minds, be empty and turn our backs Or we can do what you would want: smile, open our eyes, love, and go on. We Love You Your Daughters
15: To PopPop Now with wings, he rises above. Now when it rains, it’s his showering love. He soars over the skies with his adoring eyes. Hearing our cries, knowing we fail to realize life goes on no matter who lives or dies. Our family has always been his friend; there till the end. With weeps of joy, now to Heaven he ascends. It was his time to go, now our time to grow. It’s hard to say goodbye, before his last hello. Family is like a diamond, we are unbreakable. We knew he was an angel, but now with wings, it’s unmistakable. He had a “stare down” battle with Heaven, I guess he was a blinker. He left an overwhelming mark, It’s now up to us to make it even deeper. He’s an angel now, but had a halo from the start. The Heavens took him from this earth, but never from our hearts. We Love You Your Grandchildren
16: Amazingly creative, can truly make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. Theresa | Mr. Fix-it – if you don’t want it, give it to Jr. – he will put it to good use. Darlene
17: There is nothing that this guy can’t fix. Harry | Knows the makeup of tin and glass. Bobby | I’m constantly amazed with his talent. His creativity has been ignored by the world far too long. Kenny | Caring Dee
18: My brother, the genius. Better than MacGyver with two arrows and two matchsticks in creating a thing of beauty. Mikki | Fixer – always there when anyone in my family needs help. Robin | The craftsman. Brenda | Capable of creating and fixing anything. Jimmy
19: I remember how he and Mom liked to wrestle with each other, but most, his creativity is outstanding. Joyce | He and I were always very close especially when we were teenagers. I think he really likes me too, for whenever I come home, he tries to have an eel for me. Alma