Eugene C. Thompson
Eugene “Pappy” Thompson, a charter member of the Emory & Henry Sports Hall of Fame, was inducted in recognition of his work as a sportswriter.
Thompson, who attended Emory & Henry College in the late 1920s and played football and basketball, wrote his first sports story in 1929 for the Whitetopper. It was a preseason preview of the football team, coached by T. L. “Bingo” Fullerton and captained by Dick Lawrence, both now Sports Hall of Fame members.
Thompson became a sportswriter and later executive sports editor of the Bristol Herald Courier. He spent nearly 50 years covering sports in Southwest Virginia and Upper Tennessee, earning the title Sports Editor Emeritus when he retired in 1979.
Thompson’s business activities included membership in the National Association of Baseball Writers, Football Writers of America, and U.S. Basketball Writers. He received the Virginia Press Association Award for Feature Writing and the Virginia Sportswriters Distinguished Service Award for Outstanding Service to Virginia High School Athletics. He was inducted into the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame and the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame in recognition of his work.
Thompson was also the director of the Bristol Boys Club. He won the Man & Boy Award for the Bristol Boys Club and an Outstanding Service Award from District 1 Little League Baseball. He also won the Civitan Citizenship Award.
Eugene Thompson died on April 27, 1988 at age 81.