Grover J. “Skip” Thompson was the third of four sons born to the late Allen Leroy and Dorothy Mae (Frank) Thompson. He was born in LaCygne, Kan., on Dec. 2, 1949, and departed this life peacefully surrounded by family on Feb. 6, 2022, at his home in Mountain Grove. Skip was 72 years, 2 months and 4 days of age. Skip grew up in the Summersville and Arroll communities of Shannon and Texas Counties. After the death of his mother at the age of 5, he was raised by a host of relatives and became a family unit again when his dad married Winnie Pittman in 1962. Over the years, many stories have been shared of the days the four boys had in Arroll…hunting stories, fast cars, card games and working together. In 1967, he met Deanna Holden at a firework stand at the Holden Shell Station of Mountain View. Five years later, they were married on June 3, 1972, at the First Baptist Church of Mountain View. Three children were born to this union, Lori, Toby and Lisa. Skip and Deanna have had a love affair that spanned six decades, many careers and a couple of big moves. On June 3, they were to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary. From the beginning, Skip enjoyed racing cars. His racing career began in 1976 at West Plains. Then led into bigger and better races in southern Missouri, Arkansas and Oklahoma. He retired from racing in 1987, but then he came out of retirement in 1992 for his kids to enjoy watching him. His racing career was recognized when he was inducted into the Missouri Racers Hall of Fame in 2020 for all of his family to see. Skip moved to Springfield in 1970 to begin his construction career. From that time until his move to Mountain Grove in 1982, he built hundreds of homes in the Springfield area. It has been fun to drive through Springfield looking at the homes he built. On July 9, 1982, Wright County Livestock opened for business and Skip’s time in Mountain Grove began. He and his three brothers, Al, Steve and Mike operated the sale barn successfully through 1994. At one time, it was reported that Wright County Livestock was the fourth largest sale barn in the state of Missouri. Skip has said that operating the sale barn was a great time for our family. Many family members working under the same roof, lots of laughs and lifetime friendships were born. After Wright County Livestock was sold, Skip worked as a cattle order buyer for several years. In 1998, he built and opened S & S Recycling of Mountain Grove. Over time he also opened locations in Summersville and Lebanon. Skip operated it with his son, Toby, until 2012 when he retired to get back into the sale barn and construction business. At that time he began working with Lisa and her husband, Andy, at Lebanon Livestock Auction and began construction on Country Living Assisted Living with Lori and her husband, Joey. It is fun to think of his accomplishments, but you would be kidding yourself if you thought his work was his greatest accomplishment. Skip viewed his greatest accomplishment as his children and grandchildren. His first grandchild, Tory, was born in 2004 and 11 more followed through 2018. He spent the majority of his free time with his grandkids. He thought of projects for them to do, had them work with him, and bought a camper and boat for their enjoyment. Skip had always enjoyed taking trips to Branson and in the last couple of years visited many campgrounds in our area. He enjoyed all of the grandkids' ballgames and helped to give them rides to their practices. He had even made an Uber sign that he would hold out the window when he showed up to pick them up.
Skip was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in January of 2016. His medical path has been rough and concerning. As he has been sick, his family has heard several stories of his thoughtfulness and generosity to those in his family and community. Those stories are the heart of who he was. For many he was a friend, confident and advisor. There are so many stories of people taking his advice to heart and having success. He will truly be missed by everyone who knew him. Skip was saved and was a faithful member of the Willow Springs Free Will Baptist Church. He enjoyed the children's programming, especially Youth Sunday where he got to watch his grandchildren lead the service. Skip was preceded in death by his parents, Allen and Dorothy Thompson; his step-mother, Winnie Thompson; his father-in-law, John Vernon Holden (Lightning); and his beloved brother, Steve Thompson. He is survived by his wife, Deanna Thompson; three children, Lori Golden and husband, Joey; Toby Thompson and wife, Erin; and Lisa Stubblefield and husband, Andy; and 12 grandchildren, Tory, Kassy, Skip Owen, Landry, Eli, Lyla, Maggi, Hank, Anslee, Leightin, Sila and Ivory. He is also survived by brothers, Allen (Judy) and Mike (Julie) Thompson; mother-in-law, Alma Holden; sisters-in-law, Lois Thompson, Joanne Stoll, Debbie Holden and Jinger (Matt) Ilgenfritz; numerous nieces and nephews and countless friends. The cards may fold, the cattle get sold, fishing poles rest, and the checkered flag flies, but his legacy will go on for generations. The family requests memorial contributions be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Barnes Jewish Hospital for pancreatic cancer research in care of the funeral home. Visitation for Skip Thompson was held from 5-8 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 10, 2022, at First Christian Church in Mountain Grove. Funeral services were held at 10 a.m. on Friday, Feb. 11, 2022, also at First Christian Church, with the Rev. Duane Crewse and the Rev. Charles Felker officiating. Song selections were “Jealous of the Angels,” “Love Without End, Amen,” “I Wish Grandpas Never Died,” “Supper Time” and “I’ll Fly Away.” Musicians and singers were Zoey Shafer, Kirby Clark, Joe Golden and Carol Green. Pallbearers were Toby Thompson, Skip Owen Thompson, Eli Golden, Hank Golden, Chuck Thompson, Stevie Thompson, Brandon Barton and Bryce Lauderdale. Honorary pallbearers were Allen Thompson, Mike Thompson, Joey Golden, Andy Stubblefield, Matt Ilgenfritz, Rich Thompson and Wayne Thompson. Burial was in Willow Springs Cemetery in Mountain Grove, under the direction of Craig-Hurtt Funeral Home – Mountain Grove. Online condolences: www.craighurttfuneralhome.com.