Grant Thompson, age 18 of Temple, died Tuesday July 14, 2015. Services will be held at 10:00 AM Monday, July 20th at First Baptist Church in Temple with Tim Atkinson, Glenn Lackey and Pastor Dana Wilhelmsen officiating. Visitation will be 4:00 – 6:00 PM Sunday at Scanio-Harper Funeral Home.
Grant James Thompson was born in Temple on October 16, 1996. He was raised in Temple and was a member of Immanuel Lutheran Church. He attended school at Kennedy Powell, Bonham Middle School, Temple and Belton High Schools. Grant’s passion for animals revealed itself at an early age with weekly visits to The Fish Bowl Pet Express, membership to the Cameron Park Zoo, Zoo Camp, building of animal cities with his toys and his constant and ever changing collection of animals.
Grant surrounded himself with living things. He was always eager to share his animals with his friends, family, neighbors, Sunday School class and anyone he could bend an ear to listen, see, touch and share his love of the animals.
Grant had a unique spirit and focused vision of accomplishing his dream to own The Fish Bowl Pet Express. He wanted to be a part of the community and to move in nontraditional directions others often couldn’t understand. It wounded his heart to see an animal suffer or be mistreated in any way. Each animal had a place in his circle.
His fourth birthday party was a zoo themed party with an animal program from the Austin Zoo. The spark caught fire. Grant began taking some type of an animal with him every time he left the house. He took an animal to church every Sunday to share with the class or anyone that would take a look at what was in the box he carried with him. He began taking several at one time with him to the Ralph Wilson Youth Club in the summer to the kids attending the summer programs. When his collection started to grow and it was required by his mom that he pay for their premium fruit, nuts, special diets and habitats, he and his mom created “Grant’s Animal Programs” in order to generate income to pay for them and to acquire more of the critters he couldn’t get enough of owning and sharing.
Because his heart was tender for animals that were hurting and passion for their care and wellbeing, he often rescued and rehabilitated animals and it was always part of his program. He would be asked for advice and he would gladly give it or research options which included seeking advice from his network of other pet stores, vets, breeders and pet owners.
Grant’s hero was Steve Irwin. He watched “The Crocodile Hunter” when Animal Planet wasn’t the cool thing to do on a Saturday night. When Irwin died he said, “What do you do when your hero dies?” Grant decided he would carry Steve’s message of being kind to animals, conserving, educating, and learning how to live on this planet with the gift of animals.
When the opportunity to purchase “The Fish Bowl Pet Express” presented itself the path was clear. Grant’s dream was realized with a future designed to include accomplishing his goal of owning the pet store he so deeply loved which included living in the apartment at the store. His vision for “The Fish Bowl” to be a destination for families will continue to grow, improve, change and thrive in downtown Temple. Volunteer Programs, The Delta Program from Belton High School, Birthday Parties, Ralph Wilson Youth Club, Belton Christian Youth Center, Camp Wildflower, Temple Parks and Leisure Camps, all will continue to be a part of his community.
Grant died surrounded by animals that intrigued and fascinated him. His eyes were donated to help others see the beauty of God’s world. He leaves behind to nurture his legacy his mother, Seleese Thompson-Mann and husband, Mitch of Temple and his father, John Thompson and wife, Sara of Austin, his sister, Faith Thompson of Temple and two step-sisters, Lauren Mann of Austin and Leah Mann of Temple. Also surviving are grandparents, Weldon and Reeneea Schraeder, Phyliss Thompson and Richard Mann all of Temple and Rita McKnight of Magnolia.
His broken hearted family is humbled and thankful for the short time they shared with Grant on this earth and draws strength from knowing we will see Grant in every living thing and feel him with the kindness we show everyone around us. They are blessed and strengthened by the outpouring of love and the peace of the knowledge of how many people Grant’s life touched. Grant’s friends and the community are the angels lifting his family to their feet while their wings are having trouble remembering how to fly.
The blessing of memorials can be given in memory of Grant to The Temple Animal Shelter or APAC-Association of a Pet Adoption Center in Temple. Rescuing animals was in Grant’s heart.
Online guestbook and obituary at scanioharperfuneralhome.com.