Mary Lou Thornton

September 6, 1927 ~ December 8, 2019 (age 92)


Funeral services for longtime resident Mary Lou Thornton, age 92, of Chadron, will be held Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019 at 10:00 am at the Chamberlain Chapel in Chadron.

Burial will be at Greenwood Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established for the Chadron Rescue Unit. Donations may be sent to Chamberlain Chapel, P.O. Box 970, Chadron, Nebraska 69337.

Mary Lou Thornton passed away December 8, 2019 in Chadron. Mary Lou was born in Chadron, Nebraska on September 6, 1927, to Joe and Margaret (Wright) Blundell. She was the fifth of six children growing up on the farm south of Chadron. She attended Chadron High School, graduating in May of 1944. After high school, she worked at the Dawes County Farm Office and Blundell Plumbing. On August 30, 1946, she married Louis Thornton. Louis and Mary Lou had four children; Monte, Merle, Connie and Linda.

While her children were young, she served as a Den Mother of a Cub Scout Troop. She worked at the Chadron Blossom Shop and then as a custodian at Memorial Hall at Chadron State College. After retiring from the College in 2000, Mary Lou enjoyed corresponding and visiting with many of the college students she “adopted” while working at Memorial Hall where she was affectionately known as “Mom of M-Hall”.

Throughout her long life, Mary Lou enjoyed her family, friends, visiting, traveling, playing cards, and jigsaw puzzles. She was known for her fried chicken and Thanksgiving dressing. Her grandchildren and great-grandchildren were her greatest joys. She was a member of the First Baptist Church, a life member of the American Legion Auxiliary (serving for many years as its Treasurer), a member of the VFW Auxiliary, and Rebekah Lodge No. 98.

Mary Lou was preceded in death by her parents (Joe and Margaret Blundell), brothers: Robert (Bob), Harold (Bud), Francis (Pete) and Merle Blundell and sister (Ruth Blundell Burrows), her husband Louis and infant son, Monte.

Immediate Survivors:

Children: Merle Thornton of Chadron; Connie Thornton of Rapid City, South Dakota; Linda Hughes and her husband Kirk (favorite son-in-law) of Crawford, Nebraska.

Grandchildren: Patrick (Jenifer) Hughes of Walnut Creek, California; Thomas (Kelsey) Thornton of North Platte, Nebraska; Whitney (Jason) Saul of Glenrock, Wyoming; and Brooke Hughes of Cheyenne, Wyoming.

Great Grandchildren: Lane and Maci Saul of Glenrock, Wyoming

Many nieces and nephews as well as special friends of Mike, Pat, Jim and Terry Birnbaum and their families.

Mary Lou’s family would like to express their sincere thanks and appreciation to the staff of Crest View for their kind and compassionate care.

Online condolences can be made at

Chamberlain Chapel of Chadron is in charge of arrangements.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Mary Lou Thornton, please visit our floral store.


Funeral Service
December 14, 2019

10:00 AM
Chamberlain Chapel - Chadron
1700 Hwy 20
Chadron, NE 69337

© 2020 Chamberlain Chapel. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS & TA