Larry Thompson Profile Photo
1937 Larry 2024

Larry Thompson

September 20, 1937 — June 23, 2024

Ltc. Larry N. Thompson, retired

Lieutenant Colonel Larry N. Thompson, age 86, passed away at his home in Wickenburg on June 23, 2024. Larry was born on September 20, 1937, in Winfield, Kansas. Larry was enjoying his retirement years, after serving with the Arizona Department of Public Safety. At AZDPS, he was a committed leader in policing not only in Arizona; But was also respected and recognized for his highway safety efforts at the national level by International Chiefs of Police - Highway Safety Committee and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Larry was the sole child of Armand W. and Emma Lee Thompson. Larry grew up in Grenola, Kansas. He is preceded by both Armand W. and Emma Lee Thompson.

After high school, Larry enlisted in the United States Navy aboard the destroyer USS Frank Knox. Following his Service in the Navy, Larry returned to Kansas, where he rekindles his relationship with Patricia Ann Sanstra, who later became his wife. Shortly before they were married Larry relocated to Wickenburg, Arizona. With Bill Arnald. Whom he also had attended high school and junior college with. He found employment as a construction worker. While working in construction Larry met and became friends with George Pemberton, who was working for AZDPS. He was assigned to the Wickenburg area. His friendship and a few ride longs trips in the patrol car which led Larry to seek a career in Law Enforcement.

In July of 1960, Larry entered the Arizona Highway Patrol Academy. Upon graduation he was stationed in Sanders, Arizona. As Larry advanced up the ranks he served in the communities of Tucson, Yuma, Phoenix, and Salome. Which brought the family back to Wickenburg. Larry served the last ten years of his career at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. Larry was the Bureau Chief of the Highway Patrol and Assistant Director of the Arizona Department of Public Safety.

Larry is survived by his childhood sweetheart and wife of 65 years, Patricia Thompson of Wickenburg, Arizona. Also by his three children daughter Judy, and Sons Michael and Kyle. His 4 granddaughters and 4 great grandchildren.

A graveside service and final salute will be held at the Wickenburg Cemetery on July 6, 2024, at 9:30am.

Condolences can be sent to the family at

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