Robert H. Thompson, Jr., D.D.S., M.P.H.
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AGE: 88 • Charlotte, NC
Dr. Robert H. Thompson, Jr. died on Saturday, September 14, 2013 in Charlotte, NC, where he had lived since 2010. Before that, he spent several years in Lakewood, NJ and previously spent all of his childhood and most of his adult life in Westfield, NJ.
After graduating from Westfield High School in 1941, he attended Howard Univ. from which he received his D.D.S. degree for practicing dentistry in 1948. He then enlisted in the U.S. Army during the Korean War. While in Korea, as a Captain, he was the dental officer for the 35th Infantry Regiment, 25th Division. He was awarded a bronze star for his service.
Following his military service he attended Columbia University and received the degree of Master of Public Health. He stayed at Columbia and was a Public Health Service Trainee in Epidemiology and a Research Fellow in its Career Development Program. This led to his becoming a faculty member at the Columbia University School of Dental & Oral Surgery. When he left this post in 1968, he was a Clinical Associate Professor. He then joined the faculty of the New Jersey Dental School, UMDNJ, where during the next 20 years he would hold the administrative positions of Associate Dean, Department Chairman and Office Director. His commensurate teaching ranks were Professor of Community Dentistry and Clinical Professor of Oral Diagnosis & Radiology.
While at the NJ Dental School, he planned and directed four specific health center dental programs in Newark and assisted in the operation and evaluation of similar programs in eight other cities in NJ. These activities fell under the umbrella of the U. S. Dept. HUD, Model Cities Program. He also designed a mobile dental van which his Office of Community Affairs operated in Health Fairs and Prevention programs throughout the state. For coordination purposes he served as a consulting link between the NJ Dental School and the NJ State Dept. of Health. On the national scene, for eight years, he was a member of two grant review committees for the Public Health Service and for four years a consultant for the U.S. Dept. of Labor's Job Corp Program.
He authored or co-authored 29 articles in scientific journals involving research, teaching and public health and received numerous awards, citations and certificates for his accomplishments. Along with memberships in many civic and professional organizations, he also was a member of four fraternities - Kappa Alpha Psi, Chi Delta Mu, Sigma Pi Phi, and an honorary dental society, Omicron Kappa Upsilon. Although dental education was a strong part of his professional life, Dr. Thompson was able to practice dentistry for the 40 years of time involved, until his retirement in 1988.
He is survived by his wife, Jacqueline; three children, Freida R. Thompson, M.D., Steven G. Thompson and Robert H. Thompson, III, M.D.; and five grandchildren, Stacia, David, Elizabeth, Robert, IV, and Stephanie. He is also survived by three step-children, Rebecca A. Dees, Barbi L. Black and James H. Black, Jr. He was predeceased by his first wife, Freida.
Visitation will be held at Memorial Funeral Home, 155 South Ave., Fanwood, on Friday from 9 AM to 11 AM with funeral services at 11 AM. Interment with military honors will follow at Fairview Cemetery in Westfield. Memorial donations may be given to: HU College of Dentistry, memo: Robert H. Thompson, Jr, DDS, Class of 1946 - EORO. Send gifts to: Michael Cade, College of Dentistry, Howard University, 2225 Georgia Ave, NW Suite 823, Washington, DC 20059. For additional information or to sign the guestbook, visit www.fanwoodmemorial.com.
Memorial Funeral Home
155 South Avenue Fanwood, NJ 07023
Published in Courier News on Sept. 18, 2013