Frank T. Thompson, Navajo Code Talker (1920 - 2008)

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Birthplace: Crystal, NM, USA
Death: Died in NM, USA
Managed by: Drolli
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About Frank T. Thompson, Navajo Code Talker

  • Birth: Sep. 4, 1920

Crystal; San Juan County; New Mexico, USA

  • Death: Jun. 2, 2008

New Mexico, USA

GALLUP, N.M. - WWII U.S.M.C. Navajo Code Talker Frank Tsosie Thompson dead at 87.

Frank was a member of a US Marine Unit that used a coded version of the Navajo language in World War II to keep the Japanese from listening in, died Monday.

His son, Floyd Thompson of Gallup, said he died of natural causes in Breadsprings.

Thompson was born on September 4, 1920 in Crystal, NM. He attended boarding schools in Fort Defiance, AZ, and Albuquerque, NM.

He enlisted the same day he graduated from high school - May 5, 1942.

Thompson served in Headquarters Company, 3rd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment of the 2nd Marine Division and reached the rank of corporal. He was in the Marine Corps from 1942 until September 17, 1945, serving in Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Abemana Atoll, Saipan and Tinian.

In 1977, seventeen Navajo Code Talkers were invited to Washington, D.C., to attend the Inauguration of President-Elect Jimmy Carter on January 20th. The Arizona delegation left on January 19th. Delegates who attended were: Signey Bedoni, George Kirk, King Mike, Dean Wilson, Joe Kellwood, Carl Gorman, James Nakai, Harold Foster, Keith Little, Albert Smith, Eugene Crawford, Frank Thompson, Paul Blatchford, Henry Belone, William Cadman, Martin Link and J. Goodluck.

In 2001, Frank and the Navajo Code Talkers were awarded a Congressional Silver Medal for their service as a Code Talker.

Thompson used the GI Bill to attend New Mexico Highland University in 1947 and 1948, and became a carpenter. He worked in maintenance for the Navajo tribe for 37 1/2 years at Fort Defiance. He retired in 1991.

He is survived by his wife, Janet B. Thompson; children Janice Thompson of Breadsprings, Cassandra Bloedel of Republic of Palau, Floyd Thompson of Gallup, Frankie Thompson of Breadsprings, Terry Thompson of Breadsprings, Francine Thompson of Breadsprings and Valeri Llopis of Wickenburg, Ariz.; and seven grandchildren.

Funeral services were set for 11 a.m. Thursday at Sacred Heart Church at Gallup. Burial will be at Hillcrest Cemetery.

Navajo Nation President Joe Shirley Jr. has ordered flags on the reservation to half-staff from June 4 to June 7 in Thompson's honor.

Shirley's proclamation said Thompson "served the United States of America and the Navajo Nation with courage, honor and distinction."

The movie "WindTalkers" (released June 2002) starring Nicholas Cage, Adam Beach and Roger Willie portrayed the heroic deeds of the Navajo Code Talkers.

My father is Navajo Code Talker, Joe H. Kellwood, it is with great admiration and respect that I acknowledge the life of Frank Thompson.


 

Burial: Hillcrest Cemetery; Gallup; McKinley County; New Mexico, USA


Created by: Andrena's Daughter Record added: Jun 04, 2008 Find A Grave Memorial# 27340033





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Frank Thompson, Navajo Code Talker's Timeline

1920
September 4, 1920
Crystal, NM, USA
2008
June 2, 2008
Age 87
NM, USA
June 5, 2008
Age 87
Gallup, NM, USA