Raymon Ethridge Thompson went to be with the Lord on Feb. 14. Funeral services will be 10:00 a.m. Wednesday, Feb. 20, at Bethel Baptist Church in West Orange. Officiating will be the Rev. Olan Thompson, and assisting will be the Rev. Chad Sangster and the Rev. Jack Comer. Entombment will follow at Hillcrest Memorial Gardens near Bridge City.

Visitation will be from 4:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. Tuesday, at Claybar Funeral Home in Orange.

He was born on April 21, 1928 in Hall Summit, La., to Ethridge and Effie Thompson. After graduating from Ringgold High School in Louisiana in 1947, he joined the Air Force and served for three years before being honorably discharged with the rank of Sergeant. After leaving the Air Force, he graduated from Columbia Bible School and Southern State College. He was ordained to the Ministry in Louisiana on February 9, 1951.

Raymon married Grace Venable in 1955, a marriage that endured for 57 years. He brought his family to Orange in 1967 when he became the pastor of Bethel Baptist Church. In addition to his duties as a pastor, he began working for the West Orange Cove School District in 1969 where he taught U.S. History and Government at Lutcher Stark High School and Theater Arts at West Orange Stark Middle School. He retired from teaching in 1989.

Raymon was preceded in death by both of his parents, his brother Earl, sister Eleanor Plunkett and his youngest son, Barry Russell.

He is survived by his loving spouse, Grace; sons Charles and Paul; daughters Rebecca Dinges and Karen Mayo; brothers Olan and James, and his sisters Velda Brown, Inice Stephenson and Delores Ward.

He was an adoring grandfather to nine grandchildren, April, Brandon, Victoria, Matthew, Michael, Lauryn, Christina, Angela and Aaron. A great-grandfather to eight great-grandchildren, Amelia, Sydney, Aiden, Clark, August, Devin, Keira and Briley.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Tommy Rose for Missionary Funds at the care of Bethel Baptist Church; 2906 Western Ave., Orange, Texas 77630; 883-4822.