Spencer Thompson and his father Vic on a visit to the United States Marine Corps War Memorial in Arlington County, Va.

Thompson Furniture knocks down pins to raise money for veterans

By Andy Kriege, YSN

Doing whatever they can to help local veterans has always been a top priority for Spencer Thompson and his father Vic at Thompson Furniture in Columbus. Ind.

As a fourth-generation owner, Spencer runs the family business and serves on BrandSource’s Mid-America Region board, while Vic, the previous principal, continues to work at the store. The company has deep ties to the community, having sold furniture out of the same corner location since 1927.

See: Thompson Furniture: A Few Good Eggs That Can’t Be Beat

The Thompson family also has deep ties to the military, as Vic served in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War.

A young Vic Thompson with a T-38 jet trainer during the Vietnam War. He went on to fly F-4 fighter-bombers and C-141 cargo planes before returning home to helm Thompson Furniture.

In its ongoing effort to help veterans in need, the company supported an Indianapolis radio station that held a bowling tournament fundraiser this month. The Thompsons, together with other area businesses, sponsored 20 teams at $500 a pop, raising $10,000 in entry fees for a local veterans’ charity. Additional funds were raised through donations and a silent auction.

“It was a great event for a great cause,” Spencer said. “We had a lot of fun and raised a lot of money. If there is an opportunity to help veterans, I am all in and our business will do whatever we can.”

Thompson Furniture-sponsored bowlers included, from left, Jason Hammer, Heather Thompson, Joe Copple, Nigel Laskowski and store owner Spencer Thompson.

The event was coordinated by Bowlers to Veterans Link (BVL), a nonprofit organization that seeks to brighten the lives of American veterans and active-duty servicemen and women. Since its inception in 1942 it has helped raise $56 million to support recreation therapy programs and other services at veterans hospitals, clinics and community-based counseling centers throughout the country.

According to BVL, there is a tremendous need for these services within the veteran’s community. Recreation therapy in particular helps address the isolation and challenges many veterans face in transitioning back to everyday life, the group said. Nearly 5 million of the 9 million vets using Veteran’s Administration services each year have service-related disabilities, and BVL helps bridge the gap when federal dollars max out or physical and emotional therapies aren’t covered by the VA. 

To help support BVL or to find out how you can sponsor an event in your area, visit BVL.org.

YSN publisher AVB BrandSource is the nation’s largest merchandising and marketing co-op for independent appliance, mattress, furniture and CE dealers.

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