Memorial Service for William (Bill) Thompson
Executive Director of Union Gospel Mission in Dallas, AGRM Board Member, Certification Consultant
A memorial service to celebrate the life of William (Bill) Thompson will be held Friday, February 24 at 3:00 p.m. CST at Park Cities Presbyterian Church, 4124 Oak Lawn Ave, Dallas, Texas 75219. In lieu of any memorial gifts and/or flowers, donations may be made to Union Gospel Mission, 3211 Irving Blvd, Dallas, TX 75247, or www.ugmdallas.org.
Bill, executive director of Union Gospel Mission (Dallas, Texas), served on AGRM’s board of directors, and for many years served as a Certification Consultant for AGRM.
The following obituary is taken from the Dignity Memorial website:
Bill, the oldest of five children born to William and Ernestine Thompson, grew up in a small town in the Mississippi Delta. He accepted Jesus Christ as his Savior at the age of 12 in a summer revival held at his church. When he was 13, the church pianist moved away and he began playing the piano for Sunday school and church. He continued to play piano at his home church until he graduated from high school at age 17. He attended Central State University in Wilberforce, Ohio, and graduated with a bachelor's degree in chemistry. His first professional job after college was as a chemist for Bristol-Meyers in Syracuse, New York. After about 12 years with Bristol-Meyers, he resigned his position to answer God's call to full-time ministry. He began a diligent search of the Scriptures, engaging in self-study and sharing his faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. He volunteered in jail and prison ministry, nursing homes, and taught a Bible study at a small soup kitchen that served the homeless. On Saturday evenings, he taught a Bible study with homeless men in the basement of his home.
Sensing the need to broaden his base of biblical knowledge, he enrolled in Dallas Bible College in 1982. It was then that he started volunteering at the Union Gospel Mission (UGM). After volunteering there for over two years, he was hired to work at the mission part-time. He became the assistant director in 1986 and in 1988, he became the interim director at the request of UGM's board. After much prayer and with an appeal from the board, he accepted the position of executive director. That same year, Bill, a founding member of Calvary Bible Church, was asked to lead this all-volunteer congregation, which consisted mostly of homeless men and their families. One of the highlights of his career was the creation of "Games Day for the Homeless,” a time for homeless men, women, and children to enjoy a day of fellowship, competition, food, and fun in local parks. Bill continued in both positions, director of UGM and pastor of Calvary Bible Church, until he was called home to be with the Lord.
Bill led a full, rich life. He made the most of the years God gave him. In high school and in college, he played basketball, football, and ran track. Later, he became a good bowler and he loved golf. He became an accomplished saxophonist and played for his church's orchestra in Syracuse. He played the flute and his piano skills were not all that bad. He belonged to many professional organizations and served on numerous boards.
Bill loved God. His greatest desire in life was to be a good and faithful servant to our Lord. Prayer, study, and witnessing were priorities in his life.
He loved his family. He was a good son, a wonderful brother, and a devoted husband and father.
He loved people. He welcomed every opportunity to do what could to help those in need to succeed in life.
He loved his friends. He cherished them all. He maintained friendships from childhood and easily made friends with people from all walks of walks of life.
And he was loved. O, how he was loved.
Bill was preceded in death by his father, William Thompson; his grandmother, Annie Blunt Clark; and his uncle, Oliver West. He is survived by his mother, Ernestine Thompson; his wife, Erma; his daughter, Erika; his sisters, Faye Thompson; Janice (MacArthur) DeShazer; and Joyce Thompson; and his brother, Terry (Priscilla) Thompson.
In lieu of any memorial gifts and/or flowers, donations may be made to Union Gospel Mission, 3211 Irving Blvd, Dallas, TX 75247