Mildred S. Johnson VIRGINIA BEACH - Mildred S. Johnson, 94, died July 5, 2008, after a brief illness. Mrs. Johnson, a native of Norfolk, graduate of the Norfolk Public Schools and The College of William and Mary, was foremost a homemaker and community volunteer. She was a longtime member of the Norfolk City Union of the King's Daughters, serving as president when the first hospital was built at the corner of Olney Road and College Avenue in Norfolk and was instrumental in recruiting the first full-time pediatric surgeon, George Harkins, to join the hospital's staff. Also a lifelong member of the Ghent Garden Club, she was known as the "Merry Matron of Ghent" because of her extraordinarily felicitous manner. She and her daughter Betty, who predeceased her, were also known for their "homemade" Brunswick stew served at countless church bazaars first at St. Andrew's and later at Old Donation. The stew bore a remarkable resemblance to Mrs. Fernow's; however, sufficient enhancements were always added to avoid infringement claims. A devoted mother and wife, she ably assisted her husband's business tirelessly writing dozens of checks to trade vendors by the 10th of each month (to capture the two percent cash discount) for more than 40 years while raising a family and pursuing her community activities. Despite provocation her equanimity was unfailing. Never once in her adult life was she heard to raise her voice at her children or spouse - alas a trait that did not pass to the next generation. Survivors include her son, Thomas G. Johnson Jr. of Norfolk; her grandchildren, John Vaughan Boone of Providence, R.I., Sallie Daniels of Raleigh, N.C., Thomas G. Johnson III or Norfolk, Elizabeth J. Simmons of Charlotte, N.C., and Gary C. Johnson of New York City; and several great-grandchildren. Her husband of 65 years, Thomas G. Johnson, predeceased her. A private graveside service will be held at Elwood Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Children's Hospital of The King's Daughters or Old Donation Episcopal Church. H.D. Oliver Funeral Apts., Norfolk chapel, is handling arrangements.
Published by The Virginian-Pilot on Jul. 6, 2008.