DARLENE RUTH (HOFFMAN) JOHNSON, 69, passed away on Sunday, Dec. 9, 2012. Born Aug. 16, 1943, she was a daughter of Clifton and Florence (Flossy) Brinkman Hoffman. She was nicknamed "Kitty" with one younger sister, Donalee "Mitzi". Darlene's passion for music began as a family affair with the "Happy Hoffmans" singing group performing for churches across the Midwest. She grew up in Cleveland, Ohio before attending Wheaton College followed by West Suburban Nursing School in Illinois. While working as an R.N. in Chicago, she met Elmer Johnson and the two married on April 22, 1967. Married for 45 years, Darlene and Elmer raised their four children, Michael, Michelle, Kimberly, and Clifton in Des Plaines, Ill. and Marion, Ohio, moving to Fort Wayne in 1985. A woman of faith, Darlene served God, her family, and her church in many capacities, utilizing her spiritual gifts and musical talents for the Lord including her dedication as church pianist for over 20 years. She cherished time with her 10 grandchildren and shared her wisdom beyond her own children and grandchildren, mentoring and shaping the spirituality of numerous women in the church and beyond. Enjoying 17 years with Elmer in their retirement home in Woodburn, Ind., Darlene loved walks in the woods and every opportunity to host friends and family. She also adored travel and felt blessed to be able to visit friends and family around the world in recent years. She befriended everyone she encountered. "Today, Christ's global Church is both celebrating her legacy and missing her dearly." Memorial service is 10 a.m. Friday, Dec. 14, 2012, at Blackhawk Baptist Church, 7400 East State Blvd., Fort Wayne, with visitation from 9 to 10 a.m. Visitation with the family will also be held from 5 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 13, 2012, at the church. In lieu of flowers, please make out checks to Africa Inland Mission and indicate that it is for "Rod & Lori Kraybill Home Assignment Funds". Checks should be mailed to Blackhawk Ministries, 7400 East State St., Fort Wayne, IN 46815. Contributions may also be made online to the Africa Inland Mission website at https://giving.wesupport.org/
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