About J.C. Thompson

J.C. Thompson  J. C. Thompson (1918 - 1970)
 
 
Considering the many ways that John Caruthers Thompson was a trailblazer in his 52-year lifetime, it’s fitting that the school which boasts his name selected “Trailblazers” as its mascot. John Caruthers Thompson, or J.C. as he was known to friends and family, was a long time Haslet resident who lived on 250 acres in the area that is now known as Sendera Ranch and the Willow Springs Golf Course. J.C. was more than a leader in the local business community; he was a devoted family man and a staunch advocate for public education. His pioneer spirit contributed to his instrumental role in the formation of Northwest ISD in 1949.
 
Born in Saginaw in 1918, J.C. was the youngest of eight children. With six older, doting sisters who spoiled their little brother, J.C. developed a deep understanding of the importance of family and he later instilled that in his own children. J.C. attended Haslet schools until the 11th grade (considered a graduate at the time), and then spent another year at Northside High School. After his senior year, he attended Texas A&M University where he was a member of the elite Corps of Cadets. After his time at Texas A&M, he returned to the family ranch and married Oleitha Dell Bishop. Together they had three daughters: Exsa, Jane, and Johnnie. The couple was also blessed with seven grandchildren, five of whom graduated from Northwest ISD schools.

Early in their marriage, J.C. and his bride worked the ranch and raised cattle, but horses were J.C.’s true passion. At one time, J.C. had up to 45 horses on his ranch and he passed his love of horses onto his children. J.C. treasured his time that he showed horses and the time he spent with his daughters who were also very involved with the family horses. He also served as president of the Avondale Community Club, a family-oriented organization for farmers and ranchers, that later promoted calf roping and horse showing.
 
A very loyal and protective father, J.C. would stop at nothing to care for his daughters. With his youngest born at just two pounds, J.C. led his family through various hardships and taught his loved ones about perseverance. When his oldest daughter was diagnosed with polio at age nine, J.C. ensured that she received the best care, and often drove her or took her by train to the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota. He was known as a man who took care of his friends and family.
 
J.C. not only cared for those closest to him, but he cared for his clients as well. In 1948 he became the first insurance agent in Saginaw while at the same time trying to rally the community around the idea that a consolidated school district would be best for the students. Despite there being many in the community who opposed consolidation, Thompson pressed on and finally saw his goal achieved. In 1950 he became a Northwest ISD school board member where he worked tirelessly to ensure students would receive the best opportunities for a quality education.

J.C. Thompson was a very forward-thinking man who had a passion for education, family and horses. A man of integrity, J.C. was honest, reliable, and ethical. In 1970 at the young age of 52, J.C. Thompson passed away due to complications from pneumonia. His hard work and dedication to the consolidation of Northwest ISD helped to shape what the district has become today. Northwest ISD is proud to honor J.C. Thompson and his family with the dedication of J.C. Thompson Elementary School.