Thursday, May 6, 2010

Remembering teachers past

CURTIS THOMPSON was one of the longest serving and best-loved teachers and coaches at Chadron High School.

Born at Sargent, Nebraska in 1922, he had a bad left arm that prevented military service, but he was an avid sports enthusiast all his life. He taught school in rural Sioux County in 1942 – before attending the State Normal School at Chadron the following year.

After teaching a year at Sargent, he came to Chadron High in 1945, where he taught for six years before earning his college degree. He coached varsity sports but switched to junior high in the 1950s. We have fond memories of his many diverse and colorful ties! He was assistant varsity basketball coach when the Cardinals won the state Class B basketball title in 1961. That same year, his youth all-star baseball team won a berth in the National Teener Tournament in Hershey, Pennsylvania.

He taught/coached in Chadron for 38 years, the second-longest teaching tenure in the Chadron school system. He was married to Chadron native Betty Rhoads. She was a Registered Nurse at the Chadron Community Hospital for many years. They had two boys, Skip and Gay, and a daughter, Kathy. When Thompson left education in 1984, he and Betty traveled extensively until her death in 2001. Curt Thompson died in 2006. He was 83 years old.