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Deacon Richard J. Johnston


1933 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Deacon  Richard J. Johnston Obituary
Deacon Richard J. Johnston

AGE: 84 • Brick

Deacon Richard J. Johnston, age 84, passed away on October 5th, 2017 in Brick Township. Born to the late, Frederick C. and Anna M. Johnston, on April 18, 1933 in New York City. Richard was a graduate of Bryant High School, where he played varsity basketball. A 1953 graduate of the Ft. Benning Airborne school, Richard began serving his country in the US Army 11th and 82nd Airborne at Ft. Bragg during the Korean War Conflict. He had 127 recorded parachute jumps and was a senior parachutist jump master. After being honorably discharged from the Army, he continued his education and basketball career attending Adelphi University, Muhlenberg College and Northeast Louisiana State, and later, graduate school at NYU. During his career, Richard was a health and physical education teacher with the Roosevelt School System from 1960-1967 and with the Hauppauge School System from 1968 until his retirement in 1998. A man of faith, Richard started his formation to become a deacon at Immaculate Conception Seminary, Huntington, NY and was ordained in 1980. He served as a deacon for over 30 years, beginning at the Parish of St. Elizabeth Catholic Church, Melville, N.Y. and currently for Visitation Church, Brick, N.J. An active clergyman and servant of the Lord, Richard aided as a bereavement minister, spiritual director, CCD teacher, prisoner volunteer and was a part of the baptismal team. Along with his wife Patricia, they served the Rockville Center Diocese for 15 years as a team couple and coordinators for Retrovaille, a program sponsored by the Catholic Church for couples in troubled marriages. A skill that brought much happiness into his life was that of being a water safety instructor, where he taught all ages from beginners to adults at the Four Seasons Adult Community. He was a friend of Bill W. and enjoyed running, tennis and reading.

Richard is preceded in death by his wife of 47 years, Patricia (Shea) Johnston in 2006.

He is survived by his four children, Dr. Ellen Johnson, Christine and her husband Robert Haley, Richard and his wife Judy Johnston and Sueann and her husband Jim Bilello. Nine grandchildren, Melissa, Joseph, and Jackson Haley; Sarah Johnson, Margot, Bryn, and Timothy Johnston; and Patrick and Ryan Bilello. He is also survived by his older brother Donald A. Johnston of Washington D. C.

The family will receive relatives and friends for Viewing on Monday, October 9, 2017 from 3:00 to 5:00 pm and 7:00 to 9:00pm at The Church of the Visitation, 730 Lynnwood Avenue (Mantoloking Road) Brick, N.J 08723. A Mass of Christian burial will be offered Tuesday beginning 11:00 am at The Church of the Visitation, followed by the burial at St. Joseph Cemetery in Toms River, N.J. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Richard's memory to the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul or the . Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Weatherhead Young Funeral Home, Brick, N.J. Condolences may be sent to the family by visiting www.weatherheadyoung.com
Published in Asbury Park Press on Oct. 7, 2017
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