Gary D. Johnson
June 19, 2019
IRONWOOD, Mich. - Gary D. Johnson, 78, a longtime resident of Ironwood, passed away Sunday, June 16, 2019.
Gary was born on Sept. 20, 1940, in Painesdale, a son of Hugo and Martha (Maki) Johnson. He attended Luther L. Wright High School and graduated in 1958.
Gary proudly served his country in the U.S. Army for two years. During that period, he participated in the military police school at Fort Gordon, Ga. Gary was assigned to the 193 M.P. Co. 94th M.P. Battalion West Germany as a security guard. He was honorably discharged as a private first class on Sept. 3, 1960.
In 1961, Gary continued his education at Edison Technical School in Seattle and received a certificate in accounting machines in 1962. While there, he worked as an assembler at Boeing Aircraft.
Returning back to the area, Gary worked as a mechanic for a few years at White Pine Copper Company.
On Jan. 20, 1967, he married Kathleen C. Anderson at First Presbyterian Church in Hurley, Wis.
Always desiring to learn more, Gary attended Gogebic Community College and earned an associate degree in small engines in 1976.
He concluded his working career as a mail carrier at the Ironwood Post Office after 31 dedicated years of service.
His civic organizations included the board of directors and president of the firearms association at the Norrie Amateur Sports Club in Ironwood. Gary was a member of the Aurora Athletic Club, Saxon Harbor Boating Club and president of the National Association of Letter Carriers Local 437 in Ironwood. He was a life member of the Ironwood American Legion Post 5, Wakefield Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 9084 and AMVETS Post 490 in Ironwood, where he served as commander.
Gary was recognized in April 2011, by the Oscar G. Johnson Medical Center in Iron Mountain for volunteering 1254 hours in 11 years. It was a momentous evening for him and his family.
Gary is survived by his loving wife, Kathleen; three sons, James, William and Randy (Mary) Abramson, all of Ironwood; four grandchildren, Gretchen, Hannah, Brittany and Tonya; two great-grandchildren, Josh and Bentley; a brother, Vervil (Gini) Johnson, Worcester, Mass .; a nephew, Greg Johnson and his wife, Diane Blake-Johnson; and two nieces, Shelly and Susie, both of Vas Vegas, Nev.
He was preceded in death by his parents; a daughter, Lisa Johnson; a sister, Carole Ahola.
The family will greet relatives and friends on Saturday, June 22, from 10 to 10:45 a.m., at the VFW Post 9084, 107 E. U.S. 2, in Wakefield, with the honor guard beginning at 10:15 a.m. A funeral service will follow at 11 a.m., with the Rev. Ted Trudgeon officiating.
Following the service, full military rites will be accorded by the Ironwood American Legion Post 5, Wakefield VFW Post 9084, Ironwood AMVETS Post 490 and Wakefield American Legion Geroux Post 11 Honor Guard, assisted by the U.P. Funeral Honors Team.
A luncheon will follow the military honors at the Wakefield VFW hall.
Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to Jerald Rocco, owner and manager of Lakeside Memorial Chapel Inc., in Wakefield. Condolences may be expressed online at lakesidememorialchapel.com.