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Sydney Carter

October 24, 1943 – October 9, 2022

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Sydney Thompson
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"We are honored to provide this Book of Memories to the family."
— Colonial Rose Chapel & Cremation

Obituary for Sydney Carter Thompson

Sydney lived a full life caring for and loving his children Marie, John and Suzanne through all of their trials and jubilations. He was a loving and dedicated Spouse of 45 years who will be forever missed by Mary Lois.

Sydney Thompson was born on October 24, 1943, in El Monte, CA. His mother Lydia Busch Thompson grew up in Windsor CO, and moved to Denver where she met his father, Virgil Thompson. Virgil grew up and went to college in Kansas. Virgil volunteered to serve in the Army during WWII. He was killed in action on Bloody Bucket Ridge in 1945. He was visited just before his death in a forward Army Hospital by his brother Irvin, where Virgil asked Irv to take care of his wife and son Syd. Lydia married Irvin in 1946 and Irvin raised Syd as his own son.

Sydney grew up in El Monte, CA starting at a catholic grade school, eventually attending El Monte High School. Mom and Dad loved farm animals so there were chickens, pigs and many dogs and cats sharing the yard and house. Syd picked up his love for animals, mostly as pets, early in his life. He also gained his little brother, Dwight in 1955. The family moved to Arcadia in 1959. Syd graduated from Arcadia High School.

Boy Scouts was one of his main activities through his youth. He earned his Eagle Scout Award with a Silver Palm. He held most all positions of leadership in his troop. Elected to the Honor Society of the BSA- the Order of the Arrow- he served in many positions including chapter chief, and ceremonialist. He was awarded the Vigil Honor for his devotion to the BSA and Camping. He went to the 1957 National Scout Jamboree in Valley Forge and completed a High Adventure Trek at Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico.

Syd had a gift for music and dance. He sang in many church and high school groups. His children remember him singing lullabies. Although he was known for an expansive range, Syd called himself a baritone. He played the piano and accordion. Syd was a trained tap dancer through his youth. You can just picture him singing and dancing away at recitals and High School productions.

Graduating from Arcadia HS he earned an excellent academic and extracurricular record of accomplishment to gain admission to the University of the Pacific in Stockton. Although he really wanted to major in applied music and dance, he gave in to a more pliable degree in liberal arts. Sydney graduated with his BA in 1966.

At UOP he met and married Carolyn Sue Keller in 1962. They had 3 fun-loving children Marie, John, and Suzanne. Syd took a break from school and worked full time to support their family. He finished school and went to work for San Joaquin County as a social worker. Even though he and Sue worked full-time, Syd felt the need to work evenings on the closing shift as an Assistant Manager at McDonalds.

Syd met Mary Lois Campos during a joint parent education project. After working several years together at San Joaquin County and Stockton School District, they decided to give marriage another go in 1978.

Obviously, this time it was a wonderful loving success they each deeply enjoyed for 45 years until his death.

After graduation and throughout his years, Syd loved to camp, travel, practice photography, serve his community, and build projects—especially with wood. Using his Scouting as a camping skills base, he took his children often on camping trips. Most famously to Yosemite and other areas in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. His children have wonderful memories and stories of their wilderness escapades. He also was the consummate photographer who won local awards.

Mary Lois and Sydney traveled the world together. Their favorite trips were to England, Italy, China, Panama Canal and even the Eastern US. They became foodies. Of course, Syd also liked to cook and EAT! Syd was always known to take the long scenic route when driving. Imagine all the scenic routes he planned for Mary Lois on these trips!

Sydney just seemed not to have enough to do. He built a beautiful master suite addition to their house for Mary Lois’ parents. He remodeled many rooms in their home and most notoriously the famous 15-year kitchen. Woodworking was his specialty, and certainly a perfectionist. Mr. DYI extraordinaire.

Our Sydney was always gracious, loving, and generous with people. He volunteered in several community organizations over the years. Notably his work at the Stockton First Unitarian Church enabled the church to keep their facility in shape and free of maintenance issues for 20 years. He also volunteered at some of the non-profit art galleries that Mary Lois frequented. Syd won several awards for his photography.

Sydney is survived by his wife Mary Lois, three children: Marie Ackerman (Peter), John Thompson (Tammy), Suzanne Thompson, four grandchildren: Amy, Harry, Garrett, Zachary, his brother Dwight Thompson (Lisa). Irvin Thompson passed in 2001, Lydia Thompson in 2016 and Virgil Thompson in 1945.

His family thanks all who supported and helped him toward the later months of life. This includes the staff at St. Joseph’s Medical Center, Creekside Center, and Hospice of San Joaquin in Stockton.

A Celebration of his Life will be held at 10 AM on November 12th at the Colonial Rose Chapel.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers that a donation in his memory to your favorite charity or the Hospice of San Joaquin.

To send flowers to the family of Sydney Carter Thompson, please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.

Celebration of Life Information

Saturday, November 12th, 2022 10:00am
Colonial Rose Chapel
520 N. Sutter St.
Stockton, CA 95202

Interment Information

Sunset View Cemetery
101 Colusa Ave
El Cerrito, CA 94530
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