John Louis Thompson obituary photo
 
In Memory of

John Louis Thompson

September 13, 2016

Obituary


John Louis Thompson of Novato, CA passed September 13, 2016, eight days shy of his 89th birthday.

One of nine children born to James and Mary Thompson, John was born in San Francisco, CA and was raised in the Potrero Hill neighborhood. John grew up in the Great Depression, which had a pronounced impact on his life. He learned the importance of a strong work ethic, saving, becoming a handyman and having empathy for others.

Too young for any branch of the armed forces, John joined the U.S. Merchant Marines when he...

John Louis Thompson of Novato, CA passed September 13, 2016, eight days shy of his 89th birthday.

One of nine children born to James and Mary Thompson, John was born in San Francisco, CA and was raised in the Potrero Hill neighborhood. John grew up in the Great Depression, which had a pronounced impact on his life. He learned the importance of a strong work ethic, saving, becoming a handyman and having empathy for others.

Too young for any branch of the armed forces, John joined the U.S. Merchant Marines when he was just 16 years old. He honorably and proudly served for 11 years, including WW II and the Korean War, and was the recipient of numerous decorations. The Merchant Marines provided the greatest sealift in history between the production army at home and the fighting forces scattered around the globe in WW II. Merchant ships faced danger from submarines, mines, armed raiders and destroyers, aircraft and the elements. One in 26 mariners serving aboard merchant ships in WW II died in the line of duty, suffering a greater percentage of war-related deaths than all other branches of the U.S. military. John was recently interviewed as part of the Honoring Our Marin Veterans Oral History Project and his story can be viewed at honoringmarinveterans.org.

John was a committed husband and father. He married Mary Colletta in May 1950 and together they raised two children. He enjoyed participating in family outings and activities, playing cards and fishing. John was devoted to helping others, whether it was do-it-yourself projects within their homes or repairing their cars.

His wife Mary of 66 years; daughter Debbie and husband Glen; son Rick and wife Vickie; sister Marianne; brother Mike; eight grandchildren; and, four great-grandchildren survive John.

A Rosary is scheduled at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, September 21 and a service at 11 a.m. on Thursday, September 22, both at St Anthony's Catholic Church at 1000 Cambridge St, Novato, CA.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to any of the following three charitable organizations:

Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund
Humane Society
St. Jude


Arrangements under the direction of Keaton's Redwood Chapel of Marin, Novato, CA.