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Delmar Ray "Del" Thompson

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Delmar "Del" Ray Thompson

HEFLIN, LOUISIANA - Delmar "Del" Ray Thompson, 79, a long-time resident of Webster Parish died at his home in Heflin, Louisiana, with his wife and children at his side, on Thursday, July 25, 2013, after a long and hard-fought battle with Parkinson's Disease. Funeral services will be held on Sunday, July 28, 2013, at Rose Neath Funeral Home, 211 Murrell Street, Minden, Louisiana, at 2:30 p.m., with interment to follow at Bistineau Cemetery. Dr. Mike Hawkins, Pastor of Heflin Baptist Church will officiate.

Visitation will be at Rose Neath Funeral Home in Minden on Saturday, July 27, 2013, from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m.

Del was born on October 13, 1933 in Wilmont, Arkansas, the son of the late Advil William Thompson and Effie Lorene Thompson. He attended public schools in Morehouse Parish, and graduated from Bastrop High School where he was an outstanding multi-sport athlete. He attended Northeast Louisiana University (now University of Louisiana at Monroe) on an athletic scholarship, where he excelled as a starting pitcher on NLU's baseball team. Following service in the U.S. Navy where he was stationed in San Diego, California and then in Hawaii, Del attended Louisiana Tech University and Centenary College, and obtained a degree in business. In the mid-1950s, Del also played semi-professional baseball for the "Ruston Ramblers" and the "Bastrop Barons." Del also played on, coached and managed outstanding men's fast-pitch softball teams for several decades.

On April 4, 1958 in Minden, Del married the love of his life, Harol Lynn Turner, whom he met in class at Louisiana Tech.

During a career that spanned over 25 years, Del was employed by Western Electric Company, later AT&T, as a Section Chief at its Shreveport manufacturing facility. Additionally, for many decades Del was a tree farmer and raised Black Angus cattle on his farm near Heflin, Louisiana. Del served his community by being a member of the Heflin Town Council and serving as President of the Heflin Lions Club. In 2011, Del and his wife Harol received the "Future Forest Award" from the Louisiana Forestry Association.

Del was a lifelong outdoorsman and especially enjoyed quail hunting in West Texas with his sons and his many hunting companions. His love for quail hunting led Del to become a breeder and trainer of the finest pedigree of American Short-haired Pointers, English Setters, and Brittany Spaniels. Bird hunting enthusiasts from throughout the South purchased quail hunting dogs raised and trained by Del. Del also loved nothing more than attending sporting events of his children and later his grandchildren, following the LSU football and baseball teams, and spending time with Harol and his family and friends at his family farm.

Survivors include his devoted wife of 55 years, Harol Turner Thompson, and his three beloved children, Cynthia Thompson Jones, wife of J. Marshall Jones, Jr., of Shreveport; Dr. David Ray Thompson, husband of Dr. Melissa Dours Thompson, of Branden, Mississippi; and William "Billy" Martin Thompson, husband of Shelia Dothage Thompson, of Heflin, Louisiana. Del is survived by his grandchildren who brought him much joy: Elizabeth Peyton Thompson, Matthew David Thompson, Katherine Elizabeth Jones, William Brittain "Brit" Thompson, Kynsey Lynne Thompson and Denie Dothage; his sisters, Mary Catherine Thompson Freeman and her husband Jerry Freeman of Hamburg, Arkansas, and Barbara Nell Thompson Dean of Monroe, Louisiana, and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.

Del's family expresses their sincere appreciation to his treating physicians, Dr. Michael Chandler and Dr. Paul Davis for their many years of care for Del; to Gamble Hospice Care for its compassionate care; to his dedicated home health aides, Estelle Morris and Cynthia Tobin; and his loyal family friend Danny Wilson who assisted Del in many ways during the last several years of his life.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that memorial contributions be made to Heflin Baptist Church, 143 S. Church Street, Heflin, LA 71039; or the .

Del's kindness and love for his family and friends were present each and every day, and will be greatly missed.

Published in Shreveport Times from July 26 to July 28, 2013
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