Thorp, who took office in January of 1995, completed half of his current four-year term Jan. 1, County Clerk Jeane Brunson said. Once that milestone passes, the county is not required to hold a special election to fill the vacancy, she said. Thorp’s current term expires in December 2014.
His wife, Zan, is a fourth-grade teacher at Stuard Elementary in the Aledo ISD.
“He was one of the sharpest individuals I’ve ever met,” Norfleet said, “and he was a heck of an investment officer. Anyone could throw out a question from the state, and he’d have the answer. He knew the statutes.”
Norfleet said Thorp loved the county and his job. He was an Aledo resident and a big supporter of Aledo ISD sports.
“He liked to cook and grill,” she said, “and he would cook all weekend and bring in pork loins and brisket. He made a stew every Halloween for county employees.”
Brunson, who described Thorp as a dear friend, said she met him as they campaigned together for office in 1994.
“He was a prankster,” she said, “My back door and the front door to his office were entirely too close. I never knew what was going to be sitting on my desk or chair.
“He was clever; he could keep a straight face. Then the corners of his mouth would turn up, and you’d know that you’d been had.”
Brunson said the thing she admired most about Thorp — and his wife — was their relationship.
“He absolutely loved his wife,” she said. “They were always together. My heart aches for her.”