Obituary for Aaron J. Thompson

The world has lost a beautiful soul.

Aaron James Thompson was a world-wide adventurer, do-it-all dad, a devoted and generous husband, and a successful businessman with a gentle, playful heart, always with a twinkle in his eyes, who left this world all too soon, but left it better than he found it.

Aaron was born on June 12, 1975 to Sandra and Dr. Paul Thompson, Montevideo, MN: Aaron was husband to Adrienne Fosen (Baer) Thompson for 21 years, and the father to Keillor Vaughn (11) and Quentin Rhodes (8). He also leaves behind his sister, Gwen (David), two nephews (Calvin and Spencer) and one niece (Lydia) of Whitefish Bay, WI. Others deeply grieving his loss are, in-laws Judy and Tom Duenow and family, Larry and Maureen Baer and family, and sister-in-law, Jennifer Abrahamson (nieces, Josie and Joss), many aunts, uncles and cousins, as well as scores of wonderful friends that felt like family.

Aaron had a very creative mind and enthusiastic work ethic. He was always designing, building, inventing, buying houses or remodeling. He began by remodeling, renting and selling multiple houses before he had even graduated from high school. He and his classmates claimed this was a mutual effort of painting, fixing and a bit of partying. Aaron went on to study Construction Management at NDSU, Fargo, ND. It was there he met the love of his life, Adrienne, whom he married in the fall of 1998.

After first working with a national home builder as a project manager, Adrienne and Aaron established their independent Real Estate Brokerage, Excelsior Real Estate in 2005, after falling in love with the people of the city of Excelsior. He was honored in many publications over the years for his exceptional service, both to his clients and for his professionalism within his industry. He was a highly active member of the South Lake (Excelsior) Chamber of Commerce, sponsored many community building events. This includes the Apple Day Kids Corner, the Excelsior Children’s Christmas movie and food drive for the ICA food shelf, alongside friends at the Excelsior Fire Department. He loved volunteering for every possible event he could in the community. Aaron never met a stranger, only future friends.

After being diagnosed with stage 4 cancer in 2015, at the age of 40, Aaron looked to the future and decided to make some significant life changes in order to focus more on his family, his health and his desire for more adventures. He and his family moved to their beloved village of Tamarindo, Costa Rica, to be near the ocean to pursue his passion for surfing and adventure, and share this love with his sons. He loved boards of every kind, surfboards, snowboards, wake boards and skateboards - of which he built many with his sons. Tamarindo, a welcoming and beautiful little beach town, opened its heart to Aaron and his family.

Aaron went above and beyond in researching, trialing and consistently caring for himself using both eastern and western medicines and protocols throughout his battle with cancer. He never once let the prognosis he was given dictate his hope for a cure, or for a long and beautiful life. Recently, he decided to experience even more of the world, and in January of 2019 they embarked on a three month long journey to Australia, Cambodia, China and Thailand, sharing irreplaceable time and experiences with his wife and young sons. Aaron lived every single day to its fullest, squeezing out of life every bit of excitement, knowledge, generosity, adventure, family and friendship. A life well lived, a life well loved.

Aaron spent his last days in Tamarindo encouraged and supported by loving friends and surrounded by his family. Aaron died on September 19, 2019. His life in Costa Rica was celebrated with a beautiful paddle out ceremony in the Pacific Ocean attended by hundreds of friends, both on the beach and out in the water in a circle on surfboards, throwing flowers into the water in honor of him.

A celebration of Aaron’s life will be held in Minnesota on August 7, 2020 at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum in Chanhassen, overlooking his beloved Lake Minnewashta, where Aaron and his family loved living for over 16 joy filled years. Details on this event to follow.

In addition, this coming Saturday, December 7 at 9:30 a.m. at the Excelsior Dock Cinema, the Excelsior Fire Department is hosting their annual ICA Food Shelf Food Drive, this year named the "Aaron Thompson Memorial Kids’ Movie Food Drive,” in honor of Aaron’s dedication to this event and the community as a whole.  For information on this event, or how to donate, contact Kellie Murphy-Ringate at or 952-960-1692.

He is profoundly missed by everyone who knew and loved him.


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