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Minister Walter "Walt" Thornton
June 15, 1961 ~ July 11, 2023 (age 62) 62 Years Old
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Minister Walter “Walt” Thornton, 62, of Mansfield, Ohio passed away at Ohio Health on July 11, 2023, surrounded by his wife and plethora of children after an extended illness.
Walt was born to Elizabeth “Lizzie” Ward and Reverend J.H. Ball on June 15, 1961, in West Memphis, Arkansas. He attended West Memphis High school and excelled in track, breaking school records with ease. Earning him the nick name “Boom-Boom”. He graduated with the class of 1980. After High school, Walt attended Oklahoma State on a full ride scholarship for track and field. In 1989, Walt relocated to Mansfield, Ohio and called it home.
Walt enjoyed coaching any sport he could, starting his coaching career with basketball at the Pal, 7/11, and Roseland gyms. Coach Walt was so passionate about coaching, that it wasn’t uncommon to see a chair fly in the heat of the game. He then stated, “I’m too old for this,” and transitioned to coaching youth football, basketball, and track. He enjoyed traveling all over the country to help coach his sons, Damain and Aaron on the Blessed to Run track team, alongside coach Tyree Shine. Walt was an amazing coach and cared deeply about every child that he had the honor of coaching.
Other hobbies of his were cooking, watching movies, being a great husband and an amazing father. If you had the honor of being around him, he made sure he made you laugh. He instilled his loving and humorous personality into all his children.
Walter is survived by his loving wife of 16 years, Christina Thornton, they wed on September 8, 2006; children: Lakendrick, Marcus, Walter “Jr”, Whitney, Danielle, Donald (Larissa), Chantel, Clarissa, Catherine, Amy (Stephen), Destiane, Damain, and Aaron; siblings: Effie Mae Bell, Fannie Murdock, Robert Thornton Sr (Maxine), John L. Lewis (JoAnne), Rosetta Adams (Roger), Beatrice Smith (Leo), Butler Lewis (Levelled), William Ball (Luretta), James Ball, Frank Ball (Veronica), Mary Douglas (Frank); and countless grandchildren.
Walt is preceded in death by his parents, Lizzie and J.H.; and siblings: Emma Mary Smith, Earline Roberts, Erma Jean Anderson, Victoria “Vic” Thornton, Eula Mae Finley, Ollie Ward Jr, Matthew “Mac” Thornton, Sallie Thornton-Paige, Emma Mary Smith and Earline Roberts.
Calling hours will be from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. Tuesday, July 18, 2023, at Werner-Gompf Funeral Services, ltd., 1106 Park Avenue East, Mansfield, OH. Funeral services will follow at 5:00 p.m. at the funeral home with Pastor Larry Rawls officiating.