Steven Abbott Johnson|
1939 - 2013
"A world-class scientist with a universe-class faith"
Steven Abbott Johnson, 74, passed away in Salt Lake City, Utah on April 5th, 2013 due to severe acute respiratory failure. Born January 13, 1939 in Preston, ID, to Ben Bartlett Johnson and Dorothy Abbott Johnson. A graduate of Utah State University with a B.S. degree in physics, Steven received a master's degree (1967) and a Ph.D. (1971) in physics from Stanford University. His mentor at Stanford was Prof. Arthur L. Schawlow, who won the Nobel Prize in physics for the development of laser spectroscopy.
Steven then joined the Mayo Clinic Research Foundation, Rochester, MN, where for ten years he pioneered work on Computerized Tomography (CT) Imaging. He collaborated with the University of Utah where he was appointed Research Professor in the Department of Bioengineering and Adjunct Professor in Electrical Engineering and Radiology. While at the U of U, he worked on quantitative imaging involving x-ray, ultrasound and electromagnetic sources and did foundational innovation of inverse scattering imaging for medical applications, sonar and geophysical imaging. Dr. Johnson had over 100 scientific publications, received a National Institutes of Health Career Development Award, The Inventor Prize from the University of Utah and two awards from the State of Utah for Medical Devices and Innovation.
He formed a company to develop a quantitative ultrasound breast cancer detection system. His 40 years of research and development work have culminated in the first Quantitative Transmission Ultrasound CT Scanner for medical use, now in clinical trials. It holds the promise of safer, more accurate and earlier breast cancer detection.
When Steven visited Salt Lake City in the early 1980s he re-encountered Julianne Schreiner, Stanford alumna and friend from their earlier student days in California. They were married in the Salt Lake Temple by Elder Marion D. Hanks in October of 1983.
A lifetime faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Steven was a high priest and served the Church in various capacities, some of which include Elders Quorum President at Stanford, a gifted teacher, and a temple worker. He had a great and fervent testimony of the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ and felt absolutely no conflict between science and religion.
Survived by his loving wife, Julianne, and dear son Christopher, siblings Kent B. Johnson(Las Vegas, NV), Ralph B. Johnson (Salt Lake City, UT), and Jan J. Lawrence (Santa Ana, CA). Preceded in death by his parents.
Funeral services will be held Friday, April 12, 2013 at 1:00 p.m. at the Foothill 7th Ward Chapel, 2215 East Roosevelt Ave. (1450 South) in Salt Lake City. Friends and family may call at Larkin Mortuary, 260 East South Temple from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 11 and at the Ward from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Friday. Online condolences welcomed at www.larkincares.com.
The family expresses its deepest, heartfelt love and thanks to the staff of the ICU at LDS Hospital, all of whom exhibited greatest devotion and gave superior and compassionate care to Steven during his courageous battle in the last eight weeks.
In lieu of flowers, Steven would appreciate your contributions in his name to the Church's Missionary Fund or its Perpetual Education Fund.
Published in Deseret News from Apr. 9 to Apr. 11, 2013