David Thompson transitioned into pure positive energy on 11/25/23 at age 94. After living a long, full, and happy life Dad was in peace and knew he was loved. Dad’s glass wasn’t just half full, it runneth over; his most uttered statements were, “Life is Good” and “I’m a lucky man”.
Born in Chicago, David grew up in DC and lived in Florida and Virginia before moving to California in his 20s. Always a hard worker, his first job was delivering the weekly shopping news at age 11, and by age 12 was serving as an air raid warden messenger during WW2. He played trumpet in the high school band and was a proud Eagle Scout before enlisting in the Navy as a lieutenant. There he saw active duty in two combat tours as a naval gunnery officer on Destroyers USS Hyman and USS Trathen in Korea. His large-scale model of the USS Hyman is now on display at the Central Coast War Memorial Museum. His top grades, ROTC, and GI bills provided for his multiple mechanical and industrial engineering degrees at UVA, the University of Florida, and Stanford. His proudest accomplishments in life were earning a PhD and tenured professorship at Stanford University. Teaching combined his love of people and of sharing knowledge which progressed into a second career of consulting and expert witness testimony before retiring at age 85. His published research led to safety design advancements that affect many products in use today.
Throughout life, David enjoyed extensive travel, regular massages, running SF Bay to Breakers, skiing, and he once climbed Mt Kilimanjaro. After moving to Paso Robles in 2014 David went to every local festival and danced most weeks at the Paso concerts in the park until age 92; his favorite local singer was Joy Bonner. Dad was an avid reader of the news, but always read the comics first, and especially loved Snoopy and Charlie Brown. He was passionate about supporting women in business and politics and contributed generously to progressive causes. A true engineer, he loved his gadgets (solar-powered even better) and was always an early adopter of the latest technology. David’s happy place was pizza by the fire at his daughter’s home with friends and the granddog. Friends and family appreciated his resilience, optimism, generous spirit, and his appetite for learning, zinfandel, and ice cream. His OVERJOY license plate suited him.
Along life’s path, David married four times: an early marriage to Marilyn (deceased) who waitressed him through graduate school and with whom he had two daughters, then to Leeya who helped indulge his love of travel and learning, then to Ellie (deceased) who shared his love of Tahoe and adventure, and finally to Judy (deceased) who was his biggest fan. Following Judy’s passing in 2018, David moved across town to a welcoming Creston Village. Proud to be a Creston Village Ambassador, he enjoyed his morning walks, participating in the many activities, and developing deep relationships with his neighbors. Later he was lovingly cared for by Dave, Joseph, and Annie at Royal Home Care who became family and made his last journey peaceful.
He is loved and missed by his sister Grace and her clan, his daughters Lynda and Diane, his son-in-law Art, his second wife Leeya, her daughter Kristine and grandkids, and his other loved nieces, nephews, and steps. He will also be missed by his Men’s group, close friends Shari and Orla whom he considered dear family, and many many others.
A lifelong learner and seeker, Dad believes he lives on in non-physical, and at his request there are no memorials or funeral services. His hope would be for you to please enjoy your today, and to let people know you appreciate and love them. Thank you to his Creston Village family of residents, staff, and table mates for making his later years joyous. Thank you to Royal Home Care for more than words can express. Thank you also to Dr. Learned, Dr. Rasheed, Dr. Bourne, Nancy, Liberty, Sophia & all at Central Coast Hospice, Dr. Kaur, Debbie, and their staff for the depth of their caring.