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Elmer Glenn Johnson, 84, formerly of Blissfield, Michigan, passed away on October 12, 2012, at Special Tree Neuro Care Center, Romulus, Michigan from injuries suffered in an automobile accident on June 12, 2009. He was born April 15, 1928, in Dunningville, Michigan, the son of Elmer R. and Harriet (Koopman) Johnson. He married Carol (Stanley) Johnson on August 6, 1955, in Allegan Michigan and she survives. Graduating from Allegan High School in 1946, he immediately joined the U.S. Marine Corps, underwent Basic Training at Parris Island, South Carolina and was deployed to China where he served his entire tour-of-duty in the U.S. Occupation Forces in that country. Following his discharge, he returned to Allegan to begin his 40-year-long career in the transportation industry, which began as a driver for a regional bus company, Peoples Rapid Transit of Kalamazoo. He began his long-haul trucking years as an owner-operator for Hamilton Produce Lines of Hamilton, Michigan and then drove company equipment for Gra-Bell Truck Lines, Holland, Michigan, Transamerican Freight Lines, Battle Creek/Detroit and spent his last 15 years before retirement with Roadway Express's Toledo, Ohio terminal. Retiring in 1992, he enjoyed new hobbies as much as he did long-distance trucking. He taught himself to play pedal steel guitar and enjoyed many week-ends traveling to steel guitar shows and conventions around the country. A collection of recumbent bicycles kept him "on the road" and he rode at least ten miles a day outside in warm weather and with a recumbent exercycle indoors in the winter. Frequent trips to his beloved Great Smoky Mountains National Park and to Nashville filled in any spare time. He was a member of the North Tennessee Steel Guitar Assn., a long-time and loyal member of Teamsters Local 20 in Toledo, Ohio and a past-commander and life member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Post 3667, Allegan, Michigan.
Surviving besides his wife, are two daughters, Peggy Lynn (Craig) Campbell of Williamston, Michigan and Penny Lee Schuyler of Allegan, Michigan; two grandsons, Ian Campbell and Griffin Campbell of Williamston; two sisters, Eleanore R. Johnson of Fennville, Michigan and Christine (LaVern) Cochran of Allegan.
Gorsline Runciman Funeral Home in Williamston is assisting the family with visitation at the funeral home from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday, October 19, 2012. Graveside services with military honors will follow immediately at the Summit Cemetery in Williamston. During the upcoming holiday season, please donate a toy to the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys-for-Tots program in Elmer's memory.
Published in Toledo Blade on Oct. 17, 2012