CHILLICOTHE - Paul Curtis Johnson, 68, formerly of Chillicothe, died Friday, March 22, 2013, in Granville, New York, after a courageous struggle with cancer.
He was born in Boston, Mass., on Oct. 25, 1944, to Harold Johnson, M.D., and Ruth Moorehouse.
His family moved to Chillicothe, Ill., in 1950, where Paul graduated from Chillicothe High School.
He earned a bachelor's degree in geology from the University of Iowa in 1968.
Paul was a Peace Corps volunteer in Ghana from 1968 to 1970, where he trained science teachers. He returned to the University of Iowa to earn a master's degree with a specialty in vertebrate paleontology.
In 1972, he moved to Tucson, Ariz., to study paleoecology for a Ph.D. at the University of Arizona. He finished his coursework but stopped short to teach at Pima Community College in Tucson.
He taught many courses, including ecology, biology and anatomy and physiology for 25 years, winning several awards for his teaching.
He also did archeological work, worked as curator at the International Wildlife Museum in Tucson, and spent time in the Selous Wilderness Game Park in Tanzania, Africa.
Paul loved travel, sports, hunting and fishing, but most of all he loved telling stories about his adventures.
After retiring from Pima College, Paul lived a number of years in Idaho before moving to Castleton, Vermont, with his family. In Castleton, Paul served on the Castleton Elementary School Board and got to know and befriend many people.
Paul is survived by his wife, Deborah Alongi; two daughters, Katy Yaa Stinson and Clara Johnson; stepson, Christopher Alongi; son-in-law, Jon Stinson; and two grandsons, Samuel and Alexander Stinson. Paul also leaves behind his father, Dr. Harold Johnson and his stepmother, Shirley Johnson; his four younger sisters, Dorothea Jensen, Carolyn Pollak, Martha Johnson and Louisa Wise; and their families.
Paul's mother, Ruth, preceded him in death.
His burial took place on March 25 at the East Clarendon Cemetery in Rutland, Vermont. A memorial gathering will be held in Chillicothe, Ill., in early summer.
The family requests that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made in memory of Paul to Haynes House of Hope, 7187 State Route 149, Granville, NY 12832, which took such cheerful, loving care of him at the end of his life.
Arrangements are under the direction of the Robert M. King Funeral Home, 23 Church St., Granville, NY.