Obituary: James O. 'Jim' Thornton, 87, of Hannibal

James O. "Jim" Thornton
Posted: Nov. 14, 2019 9:17 am

James O. "Jim" Thornton, 87, of Hannibal, Mo., and formerly of Racine, Wis., passed away at 1:07 p.m., Tuesday, November 12, 2019, at Hannibal Regional Hospital in Hannibal.

Funeral services will be at 11 a.m., Saturday, November 16, 2019, at the First Church of the Nazarene in Hannibal. Pastor Jason Young will officiate and Pastor Mark Burkey will assist.

Friends and family are invited to Jim's Life Celebration at a visitation that will be from 9 AM, Saturday until the time of services at the church.

Graveside services and burial will be at 1 p.m., Tuesday, November 19, 2019, at Highland Cemetery in Ottawa, Kan.

The family is being served by the James O'Donnell Funeral Home of Hannibal.

Jim was born April 21, 1932, in Rice Lake, Wis., to Niol Orris Thornton and Emma Mae Cummings Thornton.

He was married to Dolores French on October 24, 1954, in Mattoon, Ill. She survives.

Other survivors include one son, Dr. James L. Thornton (Sandy) of Hannibal, two grandchildren, Kelsi Brooke Pio (Jeff) of Wellsville, Kan., and Brittany Ann Jonker (Brad) of Gardner, Kan., and five great grandchildren, Weston Pio, Brooklyn Pio, Casen Pio, Harlee Jonker and Regan Jonker. He also is survived by one brother, the Rev. Devere Thornton (Diana) of Chili, Wis., and one sister, Flora Packard of Crandon, Wis., and nieces, nephews and cousins.

Jim is preceded in death by his parents, one sister, Emma Wilson and one infant grandchild.

Jim was a pastor for over 42 years. Jim served churches in Waukesha, Wis., Mauston/Necedah, Wis., Mattoon, Wis., Ottawa, Kan., Mound City, Mo., Burr Oak, Kan., and finally as an Associate Pastor at the Hannibal First Church of the Nazarene.

A talented carpenter, Jim loved to build and he even built one of the churches he pastored in and remodeled several others. Mechanically inclined, Jim earned money in his college years fixing his fellow students' cars and later in life enjoyed tinkering on old tractors as a hobby. Most of all Jim cherished his family. He always enjoyed the moments that they shared together.

He attended the First Church of the Nazarene in Hannibal.

Pallbearers will be Bob Borgmeyer, John Locke, Jeff Muehring, Brian Campbell, Steve Saylor and Bill Brooks.

Honorary pallbearers will be Jeff Pio, Brad Jonker, Mike Newson, Gordon Farabee, Ernie Cook and Cedric Richardson.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Mid America Nazarene University Thornton Family Scholarship.

Online condolences may be shared and video tribute may be viewed at

In Case You Missed It

HANNIBAL |The Bluff City Theater Annex at 403 Broadway will host a summer camp called “A Breath of Fresh Air” for children ages 6 to 10 in July, with separate sessions for two age divisions. It will begin Monday, July 13, and registration is still available.