Margaret Grace Thompson, 91, passed away on Thursday, April 30th. She is survived by her 6 children; Sally, Nancy, Cathy, Robert, Bill & Loretta, 11 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren.
Born on September 17, 1928 to Gus and Margaret G. Bock in East Orange, New Jersey, Grace was the eldest child followed by her younger siblings Gus Jr. and Judy.
Grace lived a full life both with beautiful and significant experiences. While having six children, she helped support the family-run business, Thompson and Company, for over 50 years. Her stay at Alina Lodge and the guidance and friendship of Geraldine Delaney changed her life. A testament to her sobriety, she helped found Emmaus House in Ocean Grove, New Jersey. Since 1983, Emmaus House has been a blessing, offering care and support to women overcoming personal traumas.
Grace loved to travel with her family. Her own children remember the yearly trips to Florida for Christmas, and a generation later Grace’s grandchildren can recall the unforgettable travels with her to Europe. One of her favorite places was Beaulieu Sur Mer, France, enjoying time in the Mediterranean visiting her daughter Sally.
She had an encyclopedic knowledge of many things, including literature, movies, and the British Royal family. Her knowledge propelled her to her favorite show Jeopardy in the 1970’s. One of her most spiritual moments was when Pope John Paul XXIII reached out to her among a crowd of people and touched her hand. Perhaps he knew she was a kind soul. Her kindness extended to animals, as many neighborhood cats would never have survived a winter without her. Furthermore she never missed an opportunity to take a picture with, or give a treat to a playful pup. The walls of her house were lined with photos of her children, grandchildren and of course cats and dogs.
To those who knew her best, she was a great teacher of all life's necessities. She taught us how to cook, to relish movies, and she taught us to always take photos of our journeys. Grace was a true fashion icon. Stylishly put together at all times, her attire was often the first thing people noticed about her when she walked into a room. While her affection was always in abundance, to her grandchildren, her warmth was all the more evident by her infamous lipstick kiss mark.
But most of all, Grace was deeply devoted to her family. If there is one thing Grace taught us best, it was how to live a life of kindness, generosity, and humor. She was truly charismatic, and had a way of making you feel you were the most important person in the room. She made little moments memorable to each of us. From ice cream sleepovers with her grandchildren to outings for a Sunday movie, those little moments have all been cemented into our memories as some of the most 'Graceful' times of our lives. While her absence has left a huge void in our hearts, we know she is at peace now. Her beauty, goodwill and Grace will endure.