Gloria (Gigi) Thompson
Gloria "Gigi" Thompson...a California native, graduated from Dorsey High, attended Los Angeles City College and South West College. Selecting a double major, she earned an Associate Arts Degree in Business Administration and Early Childhood Education. Gloria also attended the prestigious Willie Covan dance school and School of the Performing Arts, while studying acting at Jackson Motion Picture Company. She became a professional dance teacher at the age of twelve.
Soon after beginning her dance career, Gloria performed with Billy Preston and Ray Charles. Her dancing ability also allowed her to work with Sammy Davis Jr. who nicknamed her "GiGi”. Followed by television shows with Tom Jones, Mike Douglas, and Johnny Carson, just to name a few. One of her greatest joys was performing with Ms. Tina Turner, Dionne Warrick, and Red Foxx. on the 'Name of the Game' TV show. An additional highlight was when Sidney Portier; named Ms. Gigi “The Dancer".
As a part of her entertainment career, she had the pleasure of working behind the scenes with film directors, Dean Devlin and Roland Emmerich of Centropolis Entertainment and Electric Entertainment on the Sony lot. As well as with them at MTV.
..."Life Goes On"
In 1992, while still enjoying an illustrious career, Ms. Gigi was found to have developed a fibroid sarcoma tumor in her chest wall. She was treated with radiation and successfully recovered. Then, in 1998 she was diagnosed with a nameless low grade cancer in her right ankle. That was treated with radiation, however, in 2002 it recurred. Gigi suffered from this illness until 2005. To save her life, she had an amputation of the right leg below the knee and afterward was diagnosed with sarcoma, another form of cancer. This time she was treated with chemotherapy
Being a strong, resilient woman, it took Gigi only six short months after the amputation to earn a certification as a peer counselor/visitor. She also begin promoting amputee life skills and earn certificates from the national Pierce Network and seeking peace anger management facilitation training. Gigi overcame all of her obstacles and has been steadily moving forward in the years since her surgery.
Her work in enhancing awareness and opportunities for amputees has afforded Gloria the designation of “Honorary Doctorate” (Dr. Gloria Thompson) and becoming an “Ambassador for Peace”. She also received recognition from Congresswoman Maxine Waters, Council woman Jan Perry and the Honorable Mayor Dorn. She is most proud of the 2006 birth of her non-profit organization,
Ms. Gigi is most proud of her non-profit organization, The 501(c)3 J'lyn All American Amputee Foundation, implemented in 2006. She reaches out to all people with special needs, including our veterans. Ms. Gigi's thoughts for anyone dealing with the struggles of becoming an amputee are caring for an amputee, it's a personal hard-felt matter. She feels the pulse of others who are in need of support after losing a limb. She wants them to know something very important, and her message is clear. "You Are Not Alone, there are many others with the same struggles. As a unit, with common issues, we can uplift each other and move on. It's also about your attitude"
Gigi's misfortunes have become her life's work and there is no stopping her. She is you, and you can become her.
Life does go on!