Maurice Lee "Shorty" Tompkins

maurice tompkins

January 26, 1944 ~ February 24, 2014

Maurice Lee "Shorty" Tompkins passed away at his home at the age of 70. He was born in Pleasant Mound to Claude and Helen (Reavis) Tompkins. He married Brenda Lynn Plapp on December 30, 1966 and they later divorced. He then married Carol Ann Whicker on July 25, 1998 in Las Vegas, NV. She died October 13, 2003. He is survived by his mother, his daughter Clara (Kyle) Carpenter, his brothers Donald "Jake" (Georgianne) Tompkins, Robert (Janice) Tompkins and Neil "Newt" (Sally) Tompkins, his sisters Maxine (Guy) Stewart. He is also survived by one grandchild. He was preceded in death by his father, his wife, a son Trevor Lee Tompkins. He grew up in the Smithboro area and graduated from Mulberry Grove High School. He attended and graduated from The University of Illinois. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served as a pilot during the Vietnam Conflict. After the service he worked as a freight pilot. He started flying for Frontier Airlines in 1977 and in 1986 he started flying for Southwest Airlines unitil he retired in 2004. He moved from Orlando, FL to Vandalia after his wife died. He was disabled in an ultralight accident in May of 2005. Memorial contributions are suggested to Paralyzed Vets of America


Saturday, March 1, 2014 at 11 AM

Young Funeral Home

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Memories Timeline


  1. Shorty, you are the bravest man I ever knew. Tail winds and following seas shipmate. Godspeed on your journey. We love you and miss you.

  2. Remembering Maury, especially our little grandson Hans' first flight at two years old with him. Travel lightly on your last flight.

  3. Maury, the only guy shorter than me at FAL and SWA! We had many laughs and stories together about "the 'Nam"! You are a man among men, anchors aweigh my friend!

  4. Death may take the body and soul of a loved one but it can never remove the years of memories etched upon the heart or in the mind of all those it left behind, to bear the sorrow of this loss. May you find comfort in these memories. Our deepest sympathy to the family.

  5. The entire Tompkins family has my sincerest sympathy. He will be missed by all who knew him. You are all in my thoughts and prayers.

  6. So long to a Great Naval Aviator….one of the best. Clara, a Dad you can be proud of, take care.

  7. Clara and Kyle Our thoughts are with you at this sad time. We will try to think of all the many happy days in Mission Viejo with your dad when you were growing up.

  8. Dear Helen and Maxine and family, Our families were life long friends. I remember playing STEAL THE BACON in your yard. It wasn't until young adulthood that we really connected with Shorty. He was Bill's mentor in flight school. He and Brenda hosted our wedding reception. They visited us at Sangley Point while he flew missions off the Orisinkny. We later reconnected in Michigan. As happens, years passed. He was a man of valor who suffered too many tagediies. I will always remember that I sent letters to friends asking for a Christmas cards to be sent to my teenage nephew in Iraqi. Shorty responded with a sizable cneck. I called to tell him I could not accept his generosity. He told me there was no better way to spend his money than to give to a young man in harm's way. Dear Shorty, May you soar on eagle's wings. May you land on quiet seas. May you always stand tall in our memories.

  9. Thanks for being my friend at The Old Frontier (FAL) Airlines. Flying with you was a pleasure and I always looked forward to a flight with you. Thanks for the memories Maury !! Rest in Peace my friend …

  10. All Maury's many friends at the old Frontier Airlines are saddened to learn of his passing last year. Our belated condolences to his family.

  11. I went to school with Shorty at the U of I. We lost contact a few years ago, and I had no idea all this has happened since about 2000. My wife and I would like to talk to you, Clara, if you would be so kind as to contact us. We are so deeply saddened by this news. (I just happened to Google him to try to discover where he lives.) We'd like to hear the whole story. You are in our thoughts and prayers.

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