Doris A. Thomson

Doris A. Thomson, 76, passed away on Wednesday, November 29, 2023 at her home after a long battle with cancer. She was surrounded by family and friends during her last days. She was born in Claxton, Georgia where she lived her formative years through high school. Her greatest calling was educating children and teachers. She knew she would be a teacher from an early age. Her siblings recall many days in which she made them play school from a young age. She went on to get her BS in Education from Georgia Southern, her Master’s from Valdosta State, and her Specialist degree in Educational Leadership from Nova Southeastern University. Doris relocated to Douglas, Georgia where she was honored as Teacher of the Year during her eight years teaching middle grades gifted students in Coffee County. Eventually, her desire to mentor teachers and shape educational programming led her to serve in various administrative positions which culminated as Superintendent of Liberty County School system in 1991. During her years in Liberty County, she led the opening of several new schools. She eventually retired from education in 2000 after serving approximately 30 years. Her influence will be realized for many years through the successes of teachers and students that she interacted with. Doris’ daughters and grandchildren were her greatest love. Nothing made her happier than spending time together, including attending many school ceremonies, sporting events, and dance recitals over the years. One of her favorite past times was shopping for books to give to them as gifts so she could share her passion for reading. Her proudest moments were seeing Logan, Justin, and Lilliana graduate from high school with honors before continuing their college education. As her daughters progressed in their careers, she was always happy to get a call at the end of the day to hear how work was going and to offer encouragement or advice. She will be lovingly remembered as her family’s biggest champion, advocate, and defender. She was preceded in death by her husband, Col. Francis A. Thomson; two brothers, Johnny Alford and F.E. Alford; and one sister, Gloria Alford McGonnel. Doris is survived by two daughters and their husbands, Sondra Barrow Smith (Brian Lancaster) and Susan Avant Eller (James Shannon Eller); three grandchildren, Justin Smith, Logan Avant and Lilliana Avant; two brothers, Frank Alford and Jerry Alford; and seven nieces and nephews. The funeral service was held on Saturday, December 2, at Flemington Presbyterian Church. Interment was held in the church cemetery. Pallbearers were Shannon Eller, Brian Lancaster, Logan Avant, Justin Smith, Billy Avant, and Kenny Avant. Honorary pallbearers were Doris’ caregivers, Leila Kelly, Mary Robertson, Joyce Watson, Maria Martinez, Tonika Victoria, and Dora Earnest. The family wishes to acknowledge special friends and members of Doris’ care team, Donita Strickland, lifelong friend and honorary family member for over 40 years. We are especially grateful for your enduring friendship, love, and laughter. Your kindness and support will never be forgotten; and the entire team at GHC Hospice for their compassionate presence. Carter Funeral Home handled the arrangements. To share a memory or leave a condolence, please visit