CHRISTINE KAY JOHNSON, 41 PALM HARBOR, Fla. - Christine Kay Johnson, 41, passed away peacefully Monday, May 28, 2012, at Suncoast Hospice House, Brookside facility in Palm Harbor, while surrounded by family and close friends, after a lengthy struggle with renal disease. Chris was born Oct. 12, 1970, in Rockford, Ill., to Janice (nee Medin) and Thomas Johnson. She graduated from Guilford High School in Rockford in 1988. Chris continued her education at Illinois State University in Normal, Ill., where she received her bachelor of science in graphic design in December 1992. Chris was a diverse and prolific graphic artist and musician. She was inspired by Rick Nielsen of Cheap Trick. She loved participating in various outdoor activities, including hiking, horseback riding, boating and fishing. Chris was the art director/manager of a Tampa graphics company for more than 15 years. In 1998 and 2003, she was the winner of the Clearwater Jazz Festival poster competition. In 2008, Chris illustrated the children's book, "Mommy, What's a Manatee?" She was a well-known freelance graphic artist in the Greater Tampa area. Chris is survived by her partner, Nancy Weatherhog; father and stepmother, Thomas and Joanne Johnson of Rockford; brothers, Dave (Liz) Johnson and Brad (Pam) Johnson; step-brothers, Ryan (Carrie) Knoll and Jarrod (Danielle) Knoll; nieces, Kate and Becka Johnson and Kendall, Karmin and Larkin Knoll; nephews, Ben, Alex and Eric Johnson, Brayden and Dustin Knoll. Predeceased by mother, Janice Johnson. Memorial service to celebrate Chris' life at 11 a.m. Saturday, June 16, at Zion Lutheran Church, 925 Fifth Ave., Rockford, with Pastor Mike Thomas officiating. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to Suncoast Hospice House Brookside, 164 West Lake Road, Palm Harbor, FL 34684 or to Zion Lutheran Church in Rockford.
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Published in Rockford Register Star from June 13 to June 14, 2012