Rev. Dr. Dan M. Thornton, age 70, of Marion, passed away on Wednesday, November 18, 2015 at his home. Originally from West Columbia, SC, Rev. Thornton was born on June 30, 1945 to the late Wallace and Agnes Thornton. He was a graduate of Furman University, Southeastern Baptist Seminary and Columbia Presbyterian Seminary.  Rev. Thornton served as a Presbyterian minister for many years, most recently at First Presbyterian Church of Marion.  A very involved member of the McDowell Republican Party and the McDowell County Planning Board, Rev. Thornton cared deeply about his community and was always willing to serve in any way he could.  Rev. Thornton also played the tuba in the Foothills Community Band.  He loved to travel and served in churches around the country and at the American Church in Paris, France.

Left to cherish his memory are his wife of 47 years, Betty Blankenship Thornton, and two children, Caroline Thornton Sancho and husband Félix of Burgundy, France, and Daniel Thornton and wife Ashley of Marion and their children, Davis and Jack.  Also surviving are his brother, Wallace Thornton of West Columbia, SC, and several nieces and nephews.

A celebration of life service will be held on Saturday, November 21, 2015 at 3:00pm at First Presbyterian Church of Marion with Rev. Robert Tuttle officiating.  The family will receive friends from 2:00pm to 3:00pm prior to the service at the church. Interment will follow at McDowell Memorial Park.

Westmoreland Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.

An online register is available under OBITUARIES at