Hoban staple Bill Thomson dies at 75

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Unsung heroes have always been the lifeblood of Hoban, and Bill Thomson certainly fits this mold. A 1962 graduate, career engineer, Distinguished Alumni Award winner and lifelong Hoban supporter, Thomson passed away at the age of 75.

 

Thomson was an active steward in his community, known for his service to the poor through various area churches such as St. Victor’s and St. Bernard’s. Just two weeks before his passing, Thomson participated in the Walk for the Poor, a fundraising event to benefit the Society of St. Vincent de Paul.

 

Thomson also had a significant impact on the world of mechanical engineering, having worked at Goodyear Manufacturing Company for 35 years. In recent years, he began working with Polywire Tough Companies on a new and exciting project.

 

Since the early 1990s, Thomson has dedicated his life to service to Hoban. His participation in the Hoban community began with the Alumni Phonathon in the 90s; he was a fixture at each night of the event, often staying late to make extra calls and connect with donors.

 

His passion for Hoban spilled over to the athletic world as well. As a key member of the Booster Club, Thomson sold 50-50 tickets at many Hoban events, especially basketball and football games, for well over 30 years. He himself likely raised well over six-figures in his years of service at games alone.

 

“Passionate best describes Bill Thomson,” said Mary and Patricia McIntyre, Hoban Booster Club icons and close friends of Thomson. “He really personified Hoban’s values throughout his life.”

 

He spent each and every event he attended connecting with people, smiling and sharing stories.  His charm and positive presence, seen through his bespectacled eyes and often taken for granted, will last in many hearts forever.

 

Attending road games for football and basketball was also a custom for Thomson; he always made a point to stop by and greet the coaches before each game.

 

“He would make me feel proud to be a Knight—he’s stop by before the game, tell me how proud he was of the team and thank me for all we do for Hoban,” head basketball coach T.K. Griffith said. “You don’t get that much in high school sports…he gave a lot of himself and asked for little in return.”

 

The day before he passed, Bill’s main focus was how to stream or listen to the Hoban football game against Lake Catholic on Oct. 12. He had just endured a taxing, delicate surgery, and recovery was rocky at best, but his main concern remained the Knight football game.

 

After hearing of his passing on social media, former Hoban football players Tyris Dickerson and Debo Martin led a slew of former students who quickly responded with warm sentiments and memories.

 

As the Knights head toward another playoff run, Thomson will certainly be cheering them on from above. He cherished their success. He knew the names, the numbers, the history. He knew them, and loved the student body as a whole.

 

“He took a personal interest in the students—reminding them, at every opportunity, to study hard and do their best,” Mary and Patricia McIntyre said. “At every game, [he] enthusiastically spoke to new parents and visitors about all that Hoban has to offer,”

 

You don’t find a lot of Bill Thomsons anymore in today’s busy world.  We were blessed to have his time, talents, treasures and support.