Village jeweler: Paul Thompson, July 20, 1937 to April 11, 2021

| April 29, 2021 | 0 Comments


Paul Thompson, born and raised in San Francisco, came to Southern California in 1960. He made his first home in Palm Springs where he was hairstylist to the likes of actresses Henny Backus and Zsa Zsa Gabor. And although Paul loved his life in the desert, in 1975 he located to Los Angeles where he began his career in gemology, his lifelong passion, becoming a Graduate Gemologist, an Accredited Senior Appraiser and a Master Gemologist Appraiser.

In 1980, well-prepared for life as a highly accomplished jeweler, he opened Paul Thompson Co. Jewellers on Larchmont, in the current location of Village Heights. Thompson was his own welcome wagon for Larchmont, making sure all new storeowners, merchants and neighbors got to know one another. He was a great connector as well as an expert jeweler and was certainly a large part of the fabric of Larchmont Boulevard.

In the 1990s, Thompson began his service to the Larchmont Boulevard Association (LBA), spearheading many initiatives that helped Larchmont retain its small town and neighborhood charm, including working hard with other merchants for the adoption of the “Q Condition” guidelines. Thompson was LBA president in 2004.

Longtime friend and former fellow Larchmont merchant Daryl Trainor Twerdahl reminisced about Thompson: “There was never a Larchmont Family Fair or an LBA party where Paul wasn’t greeting everyone by name and making them welcome. And though Paul could sometimes be a bit feisty, he always worked to ensure the success of Larchmont, its merchants and its customers. He would often be seen walking from store to store during the mid-afternoon, picking up an iced decaf tea at Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, a chocolate chip cookie at Village Catering Company and a bunch of flowers at Collins Hanson’s shop. He was a regular at Robert Grounds Antiques, Chevalier’s Books and of course Gingham Garden!”

Thompson also was a great lover of music, especially jazz and classical. He played the piano beautifully and never stopped taking lessons. He could sometimes be heard on Sunday mornings at Mount Hollywood Congregational Church, where he was an enthusiastic member. He continued his study of music his entire life, singing in the choir at his church in Palm Springs as well as at Mount Hollywood.

In 1997, Thomson was elected president of the Southern California chapter of the American Society of Appraisers. Around 2007, he retired and relocated back to Palm Springs where he continued his appraisal work. He died at peace in the early hours of April 11, 2021.

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Category: People

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