William M Thompson

Born: Wed., Aug. 13, 1930
Died: Tue., Sep. 12, 2017


Memorial Service

2:00 PM Sat., Sep. 16, 2017
Location: Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church


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On Tuesday, September 12, Middletown lost a beloved former burgess, William M. Thompson. Bill was well known for his intellect as well as unfailing wit. He devoted himself to public service and his family. His service as Middletown burgess was one of the most rewarding experiences of his life. His passing leaves his family and friends grieving his loss, but grateful and humbled by having such an amazing person in their lives.

Bill was born August 13, 1930 in Woodbridge, New Jersey. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Ceramics from Rutgers University in 1952 and went on to earn a Master of Science degree from Ohio State in 1953. He was a member of Keramos, the National Professional Engineering Fraternity as well as the Alpha Phi Fraternity.

After graduating, he began a long career in public service beginning with a 14-year Air Force commission. He continued serving with the Defense Technical Information Center, part of the Defense Logistics Agency, where he retired in 1990 after 26 years of honorable service. He earned the Meritorious Civilian Service Award in 1989. He married Phyllis Larue Gladhill in 1964 and they had two daughters, Laura and Ann.

Bill moved to Middletown at the prodding of his family. After his father-in-law, Ray Gladhill, decided he should be burgess in 1995, “with no input from me,” Bill suddenly found himself as the one and only name on the ballot. Although he had early misgivings about taking the job, he thrived and the town thrived during his 9-year term.

He was responsible for the creation of a revitalization committee to develop ideas for downtown renewal and persuading Safeway officials to reopen their store in Town Center Plaza. The town’s water tank is a standing monument to his ability to advocate for the town. Water issues dominated his time as burgess and he successfully influenced the Maryland Department of the Environment to improve our water policies. His involvement in the Maryland Municipal League and Council of Governments helped the town become well known and respected around the state. He was well known for immersing himself in issues without bias and understanding perspectives of those inside and outside of government. He attributes his successful term as Burgess to the Board of Commissioners who were “a good group…cohesive and supportive.”

Even in retirement, he continued to serve his community. Bill was an active member of the Lion’s Club, where he held various offices and was a Melvin Jones Fellow. He was also a member of the Evangelical Lutheran Church Zion, a life-member of the Amvets Post 9, and the Elks.

Bill is survived by his wife, Phyllis; his daughter and son in-law Laura and TJ Junor, and their daughters Madeline and Evelyn; his daughter and son in-law Ann and Michael Santorios, and their daughter Fiona; his sister Barbara Kelley, and many others who although mourn, rejoice in his homecoming to the Lord.

Services will be held at Evangelical Lutheran Church Zion on Saturday September 16 at 2:00 pm. There will be a reception following the ceremony. All are warmly invited.

Bill Thompson devoted his life to public service. We ask that those wishing to honor him send a donation to the Lions Camp Merrick for diabetic children. This summer camp program promotes the education, creative expression and social growth for children diagnosed with diabetes. Send donations to Donna S. Jackman, Diabetes & Awareness Co-Chair 659 Trefalgar Drive, Hagerstown, MD 21742. 301-790-2036 or dsjlbj615@myactv.net. http://lionscampmerrick.org

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Jennifer Falcinelli
   Posted Tue September 19, 2017
My sympathy for your loss. I enjoyed working with Bill on the town board and always appreciated his intelligence, humor and dedication to the town. My regrets that I could not attend his service as I was out of town.

A Dodson
   Posted Thu September 21, 2017
My deepest condolences go out to the family in your time of grief. May you find comfort in God's promise of a grand resurrection that will reunite us with our dear loved ones to live forever in a new world of perfect peace and happiness.

"Do not be amazed at this, for the hour is coming in which all those in the memorial tombs will hear his voice and come out..." John 5:28,29

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