Jean Thompson passed away on December 5, 2017 at El Pomar Manor in Templeton. She will be remembered as a loving mother and grandmother, faithful Catholic, farm wife and creative artist.
Jean was born Eugenia Ellenor Olsen on September 22, 1925, in Oxnard, California, to Oscar and Theresa Kelley Olsen. Her early years were spent riding her horse and exploring hills of the former Norwegian Colony on Olsen Road in Moorpark. She was Valedictorian of her graduating class at Moorpark High, where she excelled in math and science.
She met her husband, Wilbur Thompson, at Allis-Chalmers in Oxnard when she interviewed him for a part-time job while he was on shore leave with the US Navy. Their early married years were spent raising a family in Moorpark and Newbury Park, among an extended family of Kelley, Borchard and Olsen relatives.
In 1959, the family moved to Shandon. They raised alfalfa, sheep, hogs and eventually planted some of the first grapes in the area. After retirement they built a home in rural Paso Robles with the help of their son, Mel. Wilbur passed away suddenly at 59, and Jean continued with the Post Office in Shandon, eventually serving as Postmistress. She had fond memories of her friends and neighbors from this era.
She enjoyed gardening, playing dominoes with friends, traveling in her RV to the beach, spinning, weaving, painting and woodcarving as a member of Central Coast Woodcarving. Highpoints were her trips across northern Europe, the US and Canada with family.
She bestowed love and encouragement on her seven children, eighteen grandchildren, sixteen great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews. She leaves behind her children: Mel (Mary) Thompson, Gig Harbor, WA; Anne (Steve) Schroeder, Grants Pass, OR; Martha Thompson, Craig, MO; Joan Kelley, Reno, NV; Matthew (Carol) Thompson, Turlock; Brian (Peggy) Thompson, Templeton, and Laura Thompson, Shandon; a sister, Mary Rydberg, Oxnard; and brother Neil (Gisela) Olsen, Paso Robles.
She was preceded in death by her husband Wilbur, who suddenly passed aaway in 1983, a brother, Oscar Olsen Jr., and a sister, Arthelia Honerkamp.
A Rosary will be recited at St. Rose Catholic Church in Paso Robles, at 10 a.m. on December 19, 2017. A funeral Mass will follow at 11 a.m., with internment at the Paso Robles Cemetery.
The family wishes to extend its gratitude to Brian and Peggy, owners of El Pomar Manor, Dr. Bourne, and the Central Coast Hospice staff, especially Lester and Rachel, for their loving and compassionate care of our mother.