Russell D Johnson
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August 1, 1919 - April 2, 2012
Our sweet, sweet beloved father, Russell D Johnson, 92, a good and gracious man who taught prayer, lived truth, inspired faith and honored God, returned to the loving arms of his Father in Heaven and to his mother, Althora Bell McMullin Johnson and his father, William Elmer Johnson on the beautiful, clear spring morning of April 2, 2012 at 4:44 am. He was also most surely met with open arms by his five younger siblings and some of their spouses; Norma and Eldon Yorgason, Dwayne Johnson, Realla Fisher, Janet and Farl Miller and Grace Dusenberry Johnson. But what must have delighted him the most was reuniting with his first son Benjamin D Johnson (Benny) who was only 8 when a farm accident took his life June 26, 1952 and his grandson Daniel D Floyd (Danny) who was 17.
Russell was born to goodly parents August 1, 1919 in Price, Carbon County, Utah. He was the second son born in a one-room wood cabin with a dirt floor. His mother's family hailed from Ireland and then from Canada and his father came from a long line of valiant Mormon pioneers.
At the age of two, his family moved from Price, Utah to Oregon's Jordan Valley before they homesteaded a small farm on the bank of the Snake River south of Melba. Soon after, they bought their first farm in Kuna where he and his seven siblings were raised and educated.
This handsome young 18 year old met the lovely blue-eyed, dark-haired Ruby May Holladay at a church dance in Kuna on Robinson Road. Their first date was on May 14, 1938. They ate ice cream while watching the lunar eclipse from the hood of his father's car in Lakeview Park, Nampa. He married her 18 months later on October 14, 1939 in Boise, Idaho. Their marriage was solemnized December 27, 1946 in the Idaho Falls LDS Temple. They have an Eternal Family.
As a young man and newlywed he mined in Patsville, Nevada (now a ghost town) and Mullin, Idaho earning just enough money to set up a farm not too far from his father's in Kuna. He eventually share-cropped in Melba at the end of Can-Ada Road just a stone's throw from where his parents first lived. In 1960 he bought the Olsen farm on Can-Ada Road South. He raised seven kids, corn, alfalfa seed, wheat, a lamb and a pig now and then, dogs, cats, chickens of all varieties, livestock and occasionally beets. He milked cows from the time he was 8 years old and broke his own horses until retiring.
He was faithful and devoted to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and cherished his membership in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He served in the Young Men and Scouting programs, as Bishop's Councilor, Sunday School President, and as a lifelong Home Teacher. He and his dear wife of nearly 73 years served together as Nampa Stake Missionaries, in the Latin Extraction Mission, served in the Boise Idaho Temple, and in the Calgary Canada Mission - serving mostly in rural Strathmore Canada where they have many eternal and loving friends.
We miss you already Daddy. We will keep your enduring love and strong steady example and quiet sermons brightly in our hearts, earnestly striving until we meet again; Your loving wife; Ruby, sons and daughters: Beverly and Dennis Mower of Meridian, Idaho, Rena and Ted McBride of Roosevelt, Utah, Linda and Ken Roetto of Nampa, Idaho, Brenda and Terry Floyd of Salt Lake City, Utah, Rick and Debbie Johnson, and Reid and Brenda Johnson all of Melba. Thirty-eight call him Grandpa, 105 call him Grandpa-Great and he is Great-Great-Grandpa to 3 small ones. He leaves 144 direct descendants and an additional 37 married into the family. He is called brother and survived by Juan Johnson of Shaw Island, Washington, Burton and Carla Johnson of Tremonton, Utah and Mark Johnson of Nampa, Idaho and Col. Bernard Fisher, Boise, Idaho. He is also survived by his wife's loving family; Dixie Winston, Glen and Joy Holladay, Pearl and John Noble, Marjorie and Deloy Armstrong and numerous nieces and nephews on both sides that call him Uncle Russ.
Funeral services will be held at 1:00 p.m. Saturday, April 7, 2012 at the Melba First Ward LDS Chapel, 112 Randolph Ave in Melba. A viewing will be held from 6:30 - 8:00 p.m. Friday, April 6th at the Zeyer Funeral Chapel, 83 N Midland Blvd, Nampa and at the church from 12 - 12:45 p.m. prior to the services. Interment will be at Cloverdale Memorial Park in Boise next to Russell's son and grandson.
The family would like to thank Legacy Hospice for all their love and support.
Zeyer Funeral Chapel
83 North Midland Boulevard
Nampa, ID 83651
Published in Idaho Press Tribune from Apr. 5 to Apr. 6, 2012