Frederick William Thompson Sr., 86, of Mackinaw City, passed away peacefully Thursday, February 28, 2019, at his home.
Fred was born November 3, 1932 in Mackinaw City, the son of William and Jessie (Mirandette) Thompson. He graduated from Mackinaw City High School in 1951. On December 5, 1952, he married the love of his life, Aurilie Ann Ranville.
Fred worked for a short time for the Michigan Highway Department, enlisting in the United States Air Force that same year. He started his military career as an aircraft/helicopter mechanic prior to cross-training as a flight engineer on C-133s and C-141s in the Military Airlift Command. His duty stations included Lackland AFB, TX, Chanute AFB, IL, Malstrom AFB, MT, Tachikawa AFB, Japan, Donaldson AFB, SC, Hunter AFB, GA, and Dover AFB, DE. While stationed at Hunter AFB, he was a charter member of the Southside Fire Department and served as a special deputy for the Chatham County Sheriff’s Department. His Air Force career allowed him to see the world. During the Vietnam conflict, he flew many missions transporting fallen Heroes home to the Department of Defense’s eastern port mortuary at Dover AFB, DE.
Fred and Aurilie had five children. Barbara, Frederick and William were born in Mackinaw City, MI, Robert in Tokyo, Japan, and Donald in Savannah, Georgia. Upon his honorable discharge from the United States Air Force in 1972, he and his family returned to Mackinaw City, MI. He was employed by Darrow Bros. Excavating, while also performing contract work at the local Marathon Oil Storage Facility and Transport Depot. In 1982, he was forced to retire after an industrial accident at Marathon Oil.
Fred was a lifetime member of American Legion Post 159, serving many years as the post commander and adjutant. He was a former Mackinaw City Council Trustee, a thirteen-year volunteer for Mackinaw City Fire Department, and a lifetime member of Masonic Lodge 440 in Pellston, MI.
Fred enjoyed fishing, the Grand Ole Opry, traveling, Military Airlift Command 20th Squadron reunions, and time with his grandchildren. For years, he could be found at the American Legion Post telling stories and drinking a cold beer. He kept a spotless house, yard, garage, and vehicles earning him the nickname Mr. Clean. We love you and will always miss you, Dad! Hopefully you taught us to pay attention.
Fred is survived by his daughter, Barbara Ann (David) Holcomb of West Point, Utah, and two sons, Frederick William Jr. of Mackinaw City, and William George (Diane) of Tucson, Arizona. Grandchildren include Brent, David, Evan, Jourdan, Adrienne, William Jr., Jennifer, and Joshua. Great grandchildren include Damion, Emma, Kolton, Beckett, brother-in-laws, Edward Ranville, Bill Baumann, David Jewell, and Rick Clark, sister-in-law, Martha Darrow, many nieces, nephews, and companion, Freda Hudson.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 46 years, sons, Robert James and Donald Wayne, parents and twelve siblings.
A memorial service is scheduled for Wednesday, June 12, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. at the Church of the Straits. Internment with full military honors will follow at Lakeview Cemetery in Mackinaw City.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Hospice of the Straits.
Online condolences may be made at www.stonefuneralhomeinc.com
The Nordman-Christian Funeral Home of Cheboygan is caring for the family.