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Kenneth W. Johnson


LAS CRUCES, N.M. — Kenneth W. Johnson, 81, of Las Cruces, passed away peacefully with family at his side on Saturday, May 7, 2016.

Ken was born Oct. 16, 1934 in Hurley, Wis., to Clarence and Rita DeRosso Johnson. He was raised in Hurley, where he graduated from high school in 1952, then went on to study as Superior State University, earning his undergraduate degree in music education and later his master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. Ken was a respected musician and beloved band director in the Wisconsin Public School system for many years, retiring in Hartford, Wis., in 1992.

Ken is survived by his wife of 59 years, Joan Marie Cvengros Johnson; sons, Gregory (Kimberly) Johnson, of Virginia Beach, Va., and Kenneth (Paula) Johnson, of Albuquerque; a brother, Daniel (Loretta) Johnson, of Woodruff, Wis .; sister, Sandi (Terry) Tadysak, of Milwaukee; and brother-in-law, Donald Cvengros, of Bessemer, Mich.

Other survivors include seven grandchildren, Ken (Lindsey) Johnson, of Chillicothe, Ill., Adrianne (Christopher) Schachtrup, of Brimfield, Ill., Matthew (Angelina) Johnson, of Washington, D.C., Ashley Johnson, of Peoria, Ill., Brianna Johnson, of Plano, Texas, and Isabella and Eva Johnson, of Albuquerque; six great-grandchildren, Audrey Mae, Geoffrey Reese and Ivy Elizabeth Schactrup, and Bryson William, Aaron Clair and Ethne Cecile Johnson, as well as numerous other family and friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Audrey Johnson Kaste.

“Do not stand at my grave and weep, I am not there, I do not sleep. I am a thousand winds that blow, I am the diamond’s glint on snow, I am the sunlight on ripening grain, I am the gentle autumn’s rain. When you awaken in the morning’s hush, I am the swift uplifting rush, of quiet birds in circled flight, I am the soft stars that shine at night. Do not stand at my grave and cry, I am not there, I did not die.”

At Ken’s request there will be a small family service, followed by a church service at a later date.

Entrusted to the care of Baca’s Funeral Chapels of Las Cruces and Sunset Crematory. To leave online condolences, log on to


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