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Edward James Thompson

Kossuth County Advance - Staff Photo - Create Article

June 20, 1931 - May 1, 2023


A funeral service for Edward J. Thompson, 91, of Algona, was held 11 a.m., Friday, May 5, 2023, at First United Methodist Church in Algona. Burial followed at Riverview Cemetery in Algona. Visitation took place one hour prior to the service on Friday at the church. Funeral was livestreamed on the Algona First United Methodist Church Facebook page.

Edward James, son of John S. and Cora E. (Coon) Thompson, was born June 20, 1931, in Algona. He was raised and educated in Algona, graduating from Algona High School in 1952. He spent 10 years doing highway construction. Then Edward found a job he truly enjoyed as custodian of First United Methodist Church in Algona. He was a dependable, hard worker and was loved and respected by church members. He served several pastors over the course of 30 years until his retirement in 1993. He liked to play games such as Scrabble and Upwords and had a collection of 1,000 matchboxes. Edward spent time playing cards with his sisters and was a member of a card group that played 500. He traveled extensively, visiting places such as Alaska, Switzerland, Sweden, Norway, North Carolina, South Carolina, Nashville, Tennessee, Disneyland and Disneyworld. Edward attended the Rose Bowl Parade in Pasadena, Calif. with his mom. Through his travels he met many people with whom he kept in contact. Edward was a prolific letter writer. He also enjoyed photography. He documented his many trips by taking photos of the places he visited. He was also the official picture taker at any family gathering. Edward didn’t have children of his own, but he loved his nieces and nephews and was very devoted to them. He was a pleasant, mild-mannered man who got along with everyone. Edward was a member of First United Methodist Church for more than 50 years and belonged to the men’s club at church. He attended church faithfully and rang the bell every Sunday morning as well as for funerals and weddings.         

Edward died May 1 at Good Samaritan Society in Algona. He is survived by his sisters Dolores “Dee” (Larry) Johnson of Algona, Virginia “Gini” Devine of New Hampton, and Patricia “Tish” Orrick of Springfield, Mo.; brother-in-law Frank Guthals of Aurora, Colo.; and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; sisters Marilyn Guthals and Carole Rice; brothers-in-law Donald Rice, Duane Devine,and Gary Orrick; and nephew Michael Devine. To leave an online tribute, visit

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