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1920 - 2011 Obituary Condolences
William A. "Bud" Johnson died on January 27, 2011 at My Joyas Adult Family Home in Mount Vernon, WA.

A memorial service was held at First Lutheran Church on February 2. On Saturday, March 5th, Bud will be buried in Hillside Cemetery in the veteran's section in his hometown of Conrad, Montana. A gathering at 11 AM at Pondera Valley Lutheran Church will follow.

Bud was born on a farm in eastern Montana on April 19, 1920. His first years were spent in that relatively isolated place until his family moved to the nearby town of Glendive. Born into "Norwegian-Lutheran nobility", he was raised to be trustworthy, industrious and modest. He served in the Army Air Corps during WWII, stationed in England. He learned skills of record keeping, inventory supply and management of personnel during those years. Those skills served him well in his long career as lumberyard manager. After retirement, he flourished as an artist in oil paints, enjoyed photography and golfing.

In 1946 Bud married Esther Hanson, a teacher from Hawley, Minnesota. He felt he had "married up" and they made a good team for 50 years. He lived the wisdom he taught his children: do a good job, spend money wisely, and be faithful to God, family and community. After Esther's death in 1996, Bud enjoyed a special relationship with longtime friend, Helen Elliott, who continues to be beloved to his family.

Bud's body was badly damaged by a stroke in 2001, but his enthusiasm and interest in life continued and even blossomed after he moved from Conrad to The Bridge Assisted Living in Mount Vernon. The community of First Lutheran Church enhanced his life immeasurably. He attracted friends of all ages and loved his life right up to the end.

Bud's family includes daughters, Susan (Alfredo) Martinez of Mount Vernon, WA, and Jennifer (Bill) Wilcox of Redmond, WA, and son J. Paul (Valerie) Nesse of Stillwater, MN; his seven grandchildren and their families: Valerie Kesler, Jon Andrew Martinez, Ashley Al-Izzi, Sydney Herzberg, Lesley Schlessenger, Aiden Schermerhorn, Solveig Nesse; and six great-grandchildren. Bud has two remaining sisters, Hazel Shively of Anacortes, WA and Deanna (Tom) Lagerstrom of Spokane, WA.

The family would like to thank Hospice of the Northwest and My Joyas Adult Family Home for their attentive care of both Bud and his family in these last several months.
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