Leslie B. Lampton, businessman, philanthropist and founder of Ergon, the energy-based company he established in 1954, passed away Tuesday, April 17th, of natural causes at his home in Jackson, Mississippi. He was 92 years old.
After serving in the Navy during World War II, graduating from Ole Miss, and then serving again in the Navy during the Korean conflict, Mr. Lampton returned to his hometown of Jackson, Mississippi, with a plan to enter the oil business. With the support of his bride, the former Dorothy Lee Crum, Mr. Lampton embarked on a business career spanning 64 years that would see him at the helm of Ergon, a diversified empire that provides jobs to over 2,600 employees in Mississippi, 29 other states, and several other countries. While other businesses were moving to Texas during the oil boom years, Mr. Lampton made a commitment to remain in Mississippi, his home state.
He was a friend to many, but he was most comfortable talking with his employees, the persons he acknowledged as the success behind Ergon. He had a knack for hiring good people. He supported his employees in taking risks necessary for businesses to succeed, whether entering new markets or developing new products. He always reminded the employees that it was not all about profits. Mr. Lampton believed that you had to enjoy what you were doing in order to be successful in life.
Mr. Lampton had a gift for remembering the names of his employees and knowing something about their families. He was generous and supported activities for the children of his employees, from establishing academic scholarships to buying Girl Scout cookies. He also supported worthwhile charitable organizations in the communities where Ergon has a presence. Countless medical, educational and religious organizations have been the beneficiaries of his altruism.
Mr. Lampton preferred not to seek any recognition for his charitable donations, telling others who wanted to use his name that he was just doing what the Lord asked all of us to do. Mr. Lampton was a member of the Catholic Church, and his faith was the guiding influence in his life.
He is predeceased by his parents, Leslie Lampton Sr. and Jinx Anastasia Porcine Lampton, his sister Jennie Dehmer, and his niece Diane Dehmer Dinkins.
He is survived by his loving wife Dorothy Lee Crum Lampton (Dodie) of 69 years. They first met at Bailey Junior High in 1940 and started dating in his senior and her junior year at Central High School. They were married on May 8th, 1948.
Mr. Lampton is also survived by their four sons, Leslie B. Lampton III, Lee Crum Lampton, William W. Lampton (Bill), Robert H. Lampton, their spouses, ten grandchildren, twelve great grandchildren, and a nephew Joe T. Dehmer Jr.
• Leslie B. Lampton III and spouse Deborah - children 1) Barton Lampton IV and spouse Amy and their children Barton V, Taylor and Emily, 2) Kelly Lampton Roberts and spouse Wesley and their children Miles & Wesley Jr.
• Lee Crum Lampton and spouse Maggi – children 1) Amy Lampton Walker and spouse DeFord and their children Mari Lampton, Ann Elise and Hank, 2) Lee Crum Lampton Jr. and spouse Cameron and their child Tre
• William W. Lampton (Bill) and spouse Debby – children 1) Walt Lampton and spouse Pfeifer and child Marley, 2) Will Lampton and spouse Janna and children Leighton and Ellie, 3) Katie Lampton Brown and spouse Walker
• Robert H. Lampton and spouse Pryor – children 1) Ana Lampton Triplett and spouse Taylor, 2) Patrick Lampton and spouse Sophie, and 3) Louis Lampton and spouse Neilley
The Lampton family would like to extend its sincere thanks to the caregivers who have been part of Mr. and Mrs. Lampton’s life recently: Jackie, Rynell, Elenore, Gladys and Renee. Special thanks go to Kathy Stone and Annie Ruth Herron who have been integral parts of the Lampton family for over 50 years.
A requiem mass will be celebrated by Father Anthony Quyet at St. Richard’s Catholic Church at 1242 Lynwood Drive in Jackson on Friday, April 20, 2018, from 11:00 am until noon. The family will receive friends from 9:00 until 11:00 that morning at the church. Parkway Funeral Home in Ridgeland will be handling the arrangements.
The Lampton family asks that in lieu of flowers, friends donate to their favorite charity.
Leslie B. and wife Deborah Lampton IIISon
Lee Crum and wife Maggi LamptonSon
William W. (Bill) and wife Debby LamptonSon
Robert H. and wife Pryor LamptonSon
Mr. Lampton also leaves behind ten grandchildren and twelve great-grandchildren, Barton Lampton IV and spouse Amy and their children Barton V, Taylor and Emily; Kelly Lampton Roberts and spouse Wesley and their children Miles & Wesley Jr.; Amy Lampton Walker and spouse DeFord and their children Mari Lampton, Ann Elise and Hank; Lee Crum Lampton Jr. and spouse Cameron and their child Tre; Walt Lampton and spouse Pfeifer and child Marley; Will Lampton and spouse Janna and children Leighton and Ellie; Katie Lampton Brown and spouse Walker; Ana Lampton Triplett and spouse Taylor; Patrick Lampton and spouse Sophie; and Louis Lampton and spouse Neilley; as well as a nephew, Joe T. Dehmer Jr. to cherish his memory.
Leslie B. Lampton III
Lee C. Lampton Jr.