Glen S. Thornton, 85, died Saturday, Sept. 22, 2007, at his daughter's residence in Silver Spring, Md.. He was born in Highland Park on March 8, 1922, and lived in the Detroit area for most of his life, including many years in Royal Oak. He moved to Maryland in 2005 to be treated at Johns Hopkins University Medical Center for multiple myeloma, an incurable blood cancer. That treatment added two happy years to his life. Mr. Thornton served as an officer and navigator during World War II, completing 30 missions over Europe in B-17s. After the war he worked as an electrician at the Bell Telephone Company in Detroit, where he met his wife, Barbara. He was called up for the Korean Conflict shortly after their marriage in 1950. Based in Okinawa, he served 30 missions as a radar operator in B-29s until he was wounded and sent home. Following his military service, Mr. Thornton had a successful career as a manufacturers' representative in the field of industrial lighting. He formed TM Lighting with a partner in the 1960s and led the company until his retirement in 1987. Mr. Thornton was a dedicated family man who enjoyed jazz, dancing, fishing, and sports. He was active at the First Presbyterian Church of Royal Oak and as a volunteer for Oakland County Mobile Meals. Mr. Thornton was predeceased by his parents, Glen C. and Frieda (Wehlmann) Thornton; his beloved wife of 46 years, Barbara (Snyder) Thornton; his brother, Wayne Thornton; and his sister, Joan (Donald) Kolp. He is survived by his brother, Robert Thornton of Osprey, Fla.; his cherished daughter, Deborah Thornton (Rolf Grafwallner) of Silver Spring, Md., and son, William (Barbara) Thornton of El Rito, N.M.; and loving grandchildren, Sarah Thornton, Ben Thornton, Anna Grafwallner, and Marissa Thornton. A memorial service will be held in Royal Oak next spring. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial donations to support iTeam Gleni in the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation's Race for Research.
Published in The Daily Tribune on Sept. 28, 2007.
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