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In Memoriam

Paul Thompson, ASA, MGA

We were notified that ASA LA past president, Paul Thompson, passed away. Sheryl Gillett provided his obituary:
Paul Thompson ASA, MGA has died. Many will remember Paul as an active member of the Los Angeles Chapter in the late 1980’s and 90’s where he began as Treasurer, culminating in being elected President of the chapter in 1997. Paul had a great affection for ASA and often remarked how ASA was like a family to him. He worked tirelessly for the chapter, spending long hours competing nationally for the best Chapter Newsletter. He opened Paul Thompson Jewelers in Larchmont Village in 1980, where he was his own welcome wagon for Larchmont, making sure all new store owners, merchants and neighbors got to know one another. He was a great connector as well as an expert jeweler and was a large part of the fabric of Larchmont Boulevard as he was for the ASA Los Angeles Chapter. Always a natty dresser, Paul exemplified elegance. A former hair stylist to many celebrities, he was also a gifted pianist and vocalist and could be heard on Sunday mornings as part of the choir at Mount Hollywood Congregational Church. He passed away peacefully of natural causes in Redlands, CA, on April 11, 2021.

Patrick Davis, GG, ASA, wrote a touching eulogy in honor of Paul:
I recently received the sad news that Paul Thompson had passed away. I hadn't spoke to Paul in years, but I had recently been reflecting on my life and career as an appraiser and decided to reach out to him last month to catch up. As I write theses words, I am feeling so grateful that I made that call to Paul. You see, it was Paul who gave me my start and career as a jeweler. It was Paul who inspired me and encouraged me to become a professional jewelry appraiser and to start my own appraisal business. The year was 1994, I was fresh out of GIA and responded to an ad for a job as a bench jeweler at a brick and mortar jewelry store located in Hancock Park, in Los Angeles, called Paul Thompson Company Jewelers. Right from the start, Paul welcomed me into his store and his life and was more than willing to pass on his exceptional knowledge as a jeweler and appraiser. Over the years, I learned the ropes from Paul and ultimately grew into a well versed bench jeweler, buyer, seller, watch maker and eventually a professional independent jewelry appraiser and owner of GemSecure Jewelry Appraisers, Inc. Paul was the best of the old school jewelry store owners. He loved people and loved being involved in the community. Paul was extremely knowledgeable and contributed to the early development of The American Society of Appraises - Gem & Jewelry program, as well as the Master Gemologist Appraiser program. He contributed to the very early development of the first ASA - Gemological handbook. For many years, Paul wrote a weekly column in the local paper called "On The Rocks" where he spoke about and answered questions about anything jewelry related. Paul Thompson was a mentor and friend. I am so very grateful for meeting Paul Thompson all those years ago. R.I.P. Paul.