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Celebrating the life of

Billy Bernard Thompson

December 20, 1929 - February 19, 2024

Billy Bernard Thompson

Billy Bernard Thompson died peacefully, Monday, February 19th, at home in Savannah surrounded by his loving family.

Mr. Thompson, son of Emmitt Otto and Zelma Clarke Thompson grew up in Lyons, Georgia.  After graduating from Lyons High School, he joined the US Air Force.  He continued his education at the University of Georgia, graduating with BBA and MBA degrees.

While in Athens, Mr. Thompson was employed by the comptroller’s office at the University System of Georgia.  In 1965, he moved his family to become the comptroller and treasurer at Augusta College, now known as Augusta University.  In 1981, he joined Georgia Iron Works as general manager, retiring in 1994 as VP of logistics and quality assurance.  He formed BBT Consulting in 1995, fully retiring in 2019, at 89 years of age.

He was a faithful member of First Baptist Church, serving as a deacon and usher and attended the Crusader and Cason Brooker Sunday School Classes. As a member of the Exchange Club of Augusta for 54 years, he served in many capacities, including treasurer and president (1990).  He continued to be an active member of Sigma Nu fraternity.  He was also a member of the Augusta Country Club.

The Presence of “Billy B” was welcomed and admired everywhere. Whether at the Exchange Club, Masters Tournament, or the Buccaneer, he was always an exciting edition to a gathering of family, peers, and friends. 

His soft eyes and light prance gave an everlasting comfort to All around Him. His Children and Grandchildren always felt the security of His Presence. He was the interweaving link between All of the Life that precipitated from Him, and He made sure to be. He planted seed of Love and Respect in His Family, which will bear balanced fruits for the generations to come.

His Love and Service of All That Is, was and will remain His character. He rarely spoke out to anyone, and if He did, it was for a Great Grand Lesson to be listened to intently. 

Whether it was His Balance Sheet Expertise, Voice of Reason, Ears like an Owl, Homing Beacon Behavior, or Master Foresight, He was always so desperately wanted and needed by those around Him. Each piece of His Story rotated around like the Planets around the Sun, where He shed light and love onto everything He could see.

Mr. Thompson is survived by his wife Sylvia Trapnell Thompson, three children: Sharon Thompson Barber (Craig), David Shannon Thompson (Bess), and Vanne Thompson Hanberry (Bob) seven grandchildren: Sara Thompson McKinnon (Bryce), David Tennyson Thompson, Seiler Burnett Thompson, Callie Elizabeth Hegland (Josh), Betsy Alayne Barber, Robert Lane Hanberry, Jr. (Megan), and Benjamin Seth Hanberry and two great-grandchildren, Adeline Elizabeth Hanberry and Robert Lane Hanberry, III, and special friends Linda Bolt and Rosemary Motsinger. He is proceeded in death by his brother-in-law James Benny Trapnell.

A Memorial Service will be held at First Baptist Church in Augusta on Wednesday, February 21 at 11 AM followed by a Graveside Service at 4 PM in Lyons, Georgia (Lyons City Cemetery). 

The family would like to thank Donna Ham and the caregivers of Gentiva Hospice for their care.

Memorials can be made to Good Shepherd Savannah, P.O Box 15624, Savannah, Georgia 31416; First Baptist Church of Augusta, 3500 Walton Way Ext., Augusta, Georgia, 30909; Exchange Club of Augusta, Post Office Box 3884, Augusta, Georgia 30914, or a charity of your choice.




We are so sorry to hear of the passing of Billy. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

- Jon & Kerry McGavin, Windermere , Florida

So very sorry to hear of the passing of Billy. I worked at GIW with Billy for many years. Such a fine gentleman and great co-worker. Enjoyed his friendship very much. I had an aunt that lived in Lyons and I was born in Claxton so we shared many stories about that part of Georgia. RIP my friend.

- Larry Lynn, New Ellenton, SC

Our prayers are with your family. What a great life following Love Honor and Truth! RIP.

- Eric & Nancy Ferrara, Atlanta, GA

Vanne, Shay, Shannon and Families, Eddie and I send our prayers for peace and comfort today and in the days to come. May your memories be of great comfort to all of you. We are so very sorry for your loss.

- Lisa and Eddie dean, Savannah, GA

Vanne, Shay, Shannon and Families, Eddie and I send our prayers for peace and comfort today and in the days to come. May your memories be of great comfort to all of you. We are so very sorry for your loss.

- Lisa and Eddie dean, Savannah, GA

Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this extremely difficult time. We were so blessed to have known Mr. T. over the past 20 years! He will always hold a special place in our hearts! Much love, Ken and Julie (aka Crystie to Mr. T)

- Ken and Julie Edwards, Brunswick , Ga

Our thoughts, prayers, & condolences are with you all as you grieve. What a fine husband , father, grandfather and man he was. Celebrate the life and legacy he lived. Love, Bret and family.

- Bret Allen, Pensacola, FL

Will be missed.My prayers go out to entire family. Billy and I shared a many a day in their augusta home,yard& side porch.Great meals and good times.

- Jordan T Reavis. (JT), Augusta , Ga.

Shannon and Bess,So sorry on your loss. You all are in my thoughts and prayers at this sad time.


Shay and all the family, I’m so sorry for the passing of your father, husband, grandfather and friend to so many. You are all in my thoughts and prayers. Bonnie (Brickell) Welch

- Bonnie Welch, Galveston, TX

Treva and I were saddened last night when we heard of Mr. Bernard's passing. He was always kind to us Johnsons. I enjoyed being around him at the coast, and I miss those days. May the Good Lord comfort all of you in the days ahead.

- Clarke and Treva Johnson, Lyons, Georgia

Sylvia and family, What a wonderful life with Bernard. Prayers for comfort are with you.

- Florence Randall Goff, Luray, VA

Services under the direction of:

Fox & Weeks Funeral Directors, Hodgson Chapel