MEBANE, NC – “Every year, I dreaded March the 20th. It was just the day that I lost my dad.”
In 1994, Kristen Thompson-Riley was a 20-year-old new mom to a six-week-old baby and moving into a new house.
“We got a phone call at 1 o’clock in the morning and it was from my mom. And that night, he passed away, he had a massive heart attack.”
Thompson-Riley lost her hero that night, her father, Norris Bradley Thompson.
“Very much a daddy’s girl,” said Thompson-Riley. “My dad was a very quiet individual. He was an electrical engineer. He would do little things that would have a big impact on me and on other people.”
For 20 years, the dark day marking the anniversary of her father’s death was a day Thompson-Riley wanted to hide far away from.
“Miserable. Yes. That day was the worst day of the year for me.”
But her father and mother, Joanne …