Growing up, Nita was heavily influenced by her father and grandmother where she learned how to get along in the world and who encouraged her to pursue her interests and how to turn them into income.
Nita met the love of her life, Doug Thompson, through their mutual love of cars. They were married in August of 1958 and thus began their life of adventures and experiences.
Nita became the driving force behind Doug’s extensive career as a world-renowned custom car builder that spanned 50 years.
Nita and Doug moved to Butler in 1990, where Nita took a job at KMAM/KMOE as a D.J. and became known locally as “The Church Lady”.
Nita’s strong interest in genealogy and family history led to her involvement in the Bates County Historical Society. Nita and Doug were so impressed with the rich history of the area that they joined the Historical Society where they developed a plan to re-house the local museum location. With the support of the Bates County Historical Society, the property that had been used as the county poor farm was purchased and renovated to house the artifacts and cultivate the culture of the area to all those who visit.
Nita is survived by her husband of 64 years, Doug Thompson of the home, 2 sisters, Terri Ridenhour of Holden, and Susan Salzman and husband Monte of Jefferson City. 3 daughters, Sandy Wilkes and husband Mike of Stilwell, KS, Diane Bartels and husband Steve of Butler, MO and Lisa Jay and husband Andrew of Los Angeles, CA. 7 grandchildren, Rachel Clinkenbeard and husband Matt of Overland Park, Sarah (Bartels) Summers and husband Ben of Shawnee, Nickie Bartels and husband Will Beshore of St. Louis, Corey Bartels and partner Cameron Kantor of Butler, and Spencer and Gwendolyn Jay of Los Angeles, 7 great-grandchildren, Nathan Clinkenbeard of Overland Park, Myra, Pierce, and Eleanor Chamberlain, Camryn and Hadley Summers all of Shawnee, and Ameilia Sue Kantor of Butler, numerous nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, and dear friends.