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Thomas (Tommy) Thompson

1947 - 2019
Thomas (Tommy) Thompson Obituary
Thomas (Tommy) Thompson May 22, 1947 - September 30, 2019 Tommy Thompson passed away surrounded by loved ones on September 30, 2019. He was born on May 22, 1947 in Upland, CA to Homer and Wilma Thompson. Tommy was a two sport standout at Chaffey High School in both baseball and football. After he graduated in 1965, he attended the University of Kansas on a full-ride scholarship as a quarterback on the football team. Tommy decided that baseball was his sport, and consequently spent only one year at the University of Kansas before playing at Chaffey College where he set football passing records for junior college and ultimately led him to signing with the St. Louis Cardinals" MLB team. He then played eight seasons (1967-1974) as a shortstop, third baseman, and second baseman in the farm system on single, double and triple A teams. Tommy was an infield instructor in the St. Louis organization before beginning his managerial career on June 14, 1977 taking over for Buzzy Keller as the manager of the Cardinals' Arkansas Double-A affiliate. Thompson took the below .500 Travelers to the second-half Texas League championship followed by capturing the T.L. Championship by beating the first-half winner. He was voted "Minor League Manager of the Year" by the Sporting News after that season. He managed for the next 17 seasons in minor league baseball, working for the Cardinals, Montreal Expos, and Texas Rangers. He won two additional league championships. He joined the Miami Marlins where he was a scout initially, and ended up as the ball club's Senior Advisor for Player Development. Tommy enjoyed a 50 year career in Major League Baseball having touched the lives of many major leaguers including Sammy Sosa, Juan Gonzales, Dean Palmer, Larry Walker, Randy Johnson, and Marcel Ozuna. Tommy is survived by his wife Sue, mother Wilma, sister Tammy, stepdaughters Gena (husband Pete) and Jenni, and many grandchildren. The Memorial Service will be held on Sunday, October 13th at 1:00 p.m. at the Valley Church of Christ, 29035 Del Monte Drive, Sun City, CA 92586. A luncheon will follow.
Published in Press-Enterprise on Oct. 10, 2019
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