From his work as a civil rights activist, who was instrumental in integrating Oxford public schools, to working with felons as a U.S. probation officer, to serving as a Lafayette County Planning Commissioner, Leonard Thompson’s death Monday has been called a major loss for the community as a whole.
Thompson died Monday at about 10:30 a.m. after going into anaphylactic shock when he was stung by a wasp while putting his lawnmower up in his garage at his Highway 334 home. (June 23, 2010, Page 1A)
Leonard Thompson, 73, died this morning at Baptist Memorial Hospital-North Mississippi after being stung by a wasp, according to Lafayette County Coroner Rocky Kennedy.
Kennedy said Thompson went outside to put away his lawn mower. He came back inside his home on Highway 334 and told his wife he had been stung by a wasp.
“He collapsed moments later,” Kennedy said.
Thompson, who was instrumental in integrating the Oxford School District, was the first minority to graduate from the University of Mississippi graduate program in 1967. He became a principal at Central High the year the schools integrated and was given the vice-principal job at Oxford High School. Funeral arrangements are incomplete with Hodges-Freeman Funeral Home of Oxford.
Share your memories of Thompson with The EAGLE in our comment section. (June 22, 2010)