James Ray Thompson, a beloved and respected member of the community, passed away on September 17, 2023 at the age of 90. He was an automotive mechanic with an unparalleled talent for fixing anything that came his way. James was not only a skilled professional but also a warm-hearted individual who touched the lives of many.
Born on November 6, 1932, in DeWitt, Arkansas, James grew up in a loving family. His parents, Gilbert L. and Beulah Mae (Simpson) Thompson, instilled in him values of hard work, compassion, and dedication. He cherished his sister, Arcola Glosson, and shared an unbreakable bond with her.
Throughout his life, James showed unwavering support for his loved ones. Attending all their family sporting events, he became their biggest cheerleader and source of encouragement. An avid fan of the Arkansas Razorbacks, he loved nothing more than calling the Hogs with fervor and enthusiasm.
Family held a special place in James' heart. He embraced his in-laws as his own family, particularly cherishing the Thornberry family. He formed strong bonds with his brother-in-laws through their shared love for hunting and became members of the same hunting club. Hunting trips with them were filled with camaraderie and memorable adventures.
Aside from his career and family life, James had numerous hobbies and interests that brought him joy. As a member of the Poyen Assembly of God church, he found solace in his faith and actively participated in church activities. Nature beckoned to him as he spent countless hours outdoors indulging in hunting, fishing, camping, and running dogs.
A tinkerer at heart, James found great pleasure in working with various electronic devices. The world of CB radios, short wave radios, voltage meter boards, and other electronics fascinated him endlessly. He possessed an innate talent for carpentry and proudly constructed his own home, cabinets, and stunning pieces of furniture.
James leaves behind a legacy defined by love and deep connections. His wife, Vera Thompson, preceded him in death and was the love of his life for over seventy years. Their bond was unwavering. Together, they built a life filled with joy, laughter, and cherished memories. He is also preceded in death by his parents, Gilbert and Beulah Thompson; and sister, Arcola Glosson.
He is survived by his sons: James Edward Thompson and wife Dana, and Frankie Thompson; daughter Catherine Bryant and husband Russell; grandchildren: Jeriamy Vann and wife Leslie, Kenny Thompson, Carrie Korp and husband Daniel, and Christopher White and wife Amber; great-grandchildren: Ally Vann, Ashen Vann, Madison Korp, Lorelei Korp, Cameron White, and Milo Williams.
James also leaves behind a host of family members and friends who were touched by his kindness. The impact he made on their lives will be remembered forever. He will be deeply missed by all who had the privilege of knowing him.
A visitation to honor James' memory will take place on Thursday, September 21, 2023, from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM at Smith -Benton Funeral Home. The funeral service will be held on Friday, September 22nd at 10:00 AM at the same location. James will be laid to rest in Rosemont Cemetery in Benton during a burial ceremony starting at 11:30 AM.
As we say goodbye to James Ray Thompson today, let us remember him as a loving husband, devoted father and grandfather, loyal friend, skilled mechanic, and passionate outdoorsman. His legacy lives on through each person he touched. May his soul find eternal peace as his memory continues to inspire us all.
Friday, September 22, 2023
Starts at 11:30 am (Central time)