Welcome to our Thornton family

In this blog we attempt to create a visual history of a main southern Kentucky Thornton branch, descended from Scots-Irish Thorntons who may have arrived in Pennsylvania in the mid-1700s. If your goal is to check whether or not you or a family member are listed in our genealogy file, the first eight posts contain more than 1,500 names, listed generationally. Use the 'find' command to scroll through the material...Good luck.

Also, if you have photos, corrections, or inquiries, please feel free to contact us at thorntonsoky@gmail.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Family Biography: Jesse Willard Thornton (Part I)

Jesse Willard Thornton, son of Jesse Benton and Susie Cooper Thornton, was born June 14, 1920, in Warren County, KY, generally living south of Bowling Green in the Woodburn community. In the late 1930s, he attended the University of Kentucky, playing basketball, before being drafted for World War II. He later made a career of the Air Force, rising to Major with responsibility for recreation, sports, and park services. Upon retirement from the military, Jesse served as the first Warren County Parks and Recreation Director. In the 1970s, he moved to West Palm Beach, FL, and began a long involvement with Palm Beach County Parks and Rec., especially with regards to Special Olympics. A scholarship at Western Kentucky University has been established in his honor.

Jesse's class in Woodburn: someone has thoughtfully placed squiggles above his head...

The four Thornton brothers: Porter, Jess, Roy, and Bob.

Sgt. Jess and his wife, Mary Patricia Wilkinson; She was born Sept. 19, 1918, in London, England, and died March 8, 1969. Currently, she has a brother living in Morden, Surrey, England, and another in Wales.

Jesse Willard Thornton.

The children of Jess and Patricia Wilkinson Thornton: Richard Carlton (b. 1946), Diane Lynn (b. 1948), and Phillip Benton (b. 1949).

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