James Harvey Johnson was born October 29, 1922 in Yankton, South Dakota, the son of former U.S. Senator Edwin Stockton Johnson and Marie Anna Johnson. He died at the Rock Creek Special Care Facility in Surprise, Arizona on March 12, 2013 with his loving wife at his side. Services will be at 2:00 P.M. on March 18, 2013 at the Desert Palms Presbyterian Church in Sun City West Arizona.
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Harvey grew up in Platte, South Dakota and graduated from Platte High School in 1940. He was the youngest and last surviving of sixteen children. He was inducted into the army in May 1943, served in Europe during World War II, and was discharged in 1946. Harvey graduated from Colorado A & M University in Fort Collins, Colorado and earned a degree in civil engineering.
After graduation Harvey worked for the Bureau of Reclamation and was between jobs when he met and married Laura Elizabeth Hanna on August 24, 1951. After their marriage Harvey began a 13 year career with Lock Joint Pipe Company. They had four sons, Dick (Sherry), Bob (Hope), Ken (Connie), and Don (Maria) and after several moves with Lock Joint the family moved to Norfolk, Nebraska in 1964 where Harvey started and ran Johnson Engineering Company until his retirement in 1988. He was an active member of the First Presbyterian Church in Norfolk. He served as an Elder, a Deacon, and sang in the Choir. He also served as president of the Lions Club, the Shrine Club and the Oriental band. Harvey was also an avid golfer with four holes in one to his credit and enjoyed hunting with his boys and dog.
In 1993, Harvey and Laura began a gradual move to Sun City West, Arizona and became full time Arizona residents in 2002. While in Arizona he was active in the Desert Palms Presbyterian Church as well as numerous other activities such as silver craft, lapidary, and, of course, continued to enjoy playing golf.
Harvey was preceded in death by his parents, three brothers, two sisters and ten half brothers and sisters. He is survived by his four sons and their wives, nine grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren. The family requests that memorials be sent to Desert Palms Presbyterian Church, the Parkinson's Foundation or to the
in Surprise, Arizona.
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Published in Daily News-Sun on Mar. 21, 2013