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Obituary: Ronald E. Thompson

Ronald E. Thompson, 84, a fifty-year resident of Madison, died Sunday, May 11, 2014, with family by his side. Born in Waterbury, CT, April 9, 1930, he was the son of the late Lincoln and Anna (Anderson) Thompson.

He grew up in Cheshire and graduated from Hill House High School, where he was one of the top ten cross country runners in the state and captain of his cross country team his senior year.

Ron was a graduate of Worcester Polytechnic Institute with a BS degree in electrical engineering and captain of the cross country team his senior year.

Following graduation, Ron entered Officers Candidate School and was commissioned Ensign in the U.S. Navy in October 1952.

Upon completing three years as LTJG in the U.S. Navy, Ron attended The Tuck School at Dartmouth College and received his MBA in 1957.

In 1959, Ron married his longtime sweetheart, Barbara Anne Samson, of Cheshire.

He was the founder of TAT Engineering Corporation, where he worked with his wife. Ron developed and produced peristaltic pumps for water sampling, chemical transfer, and various other applications. He designed a pump for testing blood in weightlessness which was used in the Columbia Space Shuttle on January 12, 1986.

During his forty years at TAT, Ron received several patents in fluid flow, and in 1998 he sold the business to a company in Ohio to spend time traveling and with his family. Ron’s favorite hobbies included sailing, ice skating and snow skiing, and he was a longtime member of the Madison Winter Club.

Surviving Ron are his wife of 55 years, Barbara; and their children, Ron Jr. (wife Anne Bahr) of New York City; Deborah Hetherington (husband Paul) of Shrewsbury, England; and Seth (wife Karen Egly) of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates and Rockland, ME; grandson Ronald Thompson III of Washington DC; and grandsons Rhys Hetherington and Billy Hetherington of Shrewsbury, England. Surviving Ron are his brother Lincoln Jr. (wife Elizabeth) of Old Saybrook and brother Norman of Meriden.

His sister, Phyllis, who predeceased him, died in 1989. Also surviving Ron are his niece Laura Grondin (husband Rick) of West Hartford, and nephew Lincoln Thompson (wife Julie) of South Glastonbury and six grandnephews and -nieces.

A gathering for family and friends will be held at 11 am, Wednesday, May 14, at The First Congregational Church of Madison, 26 Meetinghouse Lane, Madison, CT.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in the name of Ronald Thompson may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project (woundedwarriorproject.org) or Gladeview Healthcare, c/o Finance at 60 Boston Post Road, Old Saybrook, CT, 06475.

To sign the online guest book, please visit hawleylincolnmemorial.com.

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