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Roy A. Johnson a long-time Minneapolis school teacher, went home to his Lord on Tuesday, August 16, 2016, at Hennepin County Medical Center, following heroic cardiac surgery. He was 87 years old.
Funeral services are 11 a.m., Wednesday, August 24, 2016, at Alexandria Covenant Church in Alexandria with Rev. John LeVahn and Rev. Rollie Mossberg officiating. Music is provided by pianist, Mertice Brueske. Full military honors accorded by the Minnesota Honor Guard, Alexandria American Legion Post #87, and Alexandria VFW Post #936. Burial is in Scandia, Minnesota.
Visitation is 5-8 p.m., Tuesday at Lind Family Funeral Home in Alexandria and will continue one hour prior to the service at the church.
Roy was born to Norwegian immigrant parents, John and Marie Johnson, in the front room of his family’s up-down duplex in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He and his five siblings thrived in a home filled with love, laughter, music and faith. Roy attended the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee and served in the United States Army during the Korean War. Roy and his wife Connie welcomed their daughter, Gail, into their family not long before the onset of Connie’s illness and early death. Roy married Lois Walfrid on June 26, 1959, and they recently celebrated 57 years of marriage. They have two sons, Jeffrey and Kevin.
Roy taught elementary school in inner-city Minneapolis for 28 years. He was a caring, passionate, highly effective educator for many hundreds of students. After his retirement from teaching, he worked with court-appointed youth in northwest Wisconsin, where Roy and Lois lived for 12 years before returning briefly to the Twin Cities and then moving to west central Minnesota 16 years ago. They enjoyed exploring the lakes, landscapes, and small towns of Minnesota and Wisconsin as well as the Mississippi River byways. Roy was an active idea person in conducting the historical research that resulted in Lois’ numerous novels.
Roy courageously surmounted many challenges and traumas throughout life, and these experiences made him a caring person both in grieving and giving comfort to others.
Roy was known for his deep faith in Christ, rich baritone voice, and love for family, which grew to include seven grandchildren and their two spouses. He always valued making a difference above making a living, and his strong and gentle life can be summed up in the words, “No man stands taller than when he kneels to help a child.”
Roy was surrounded at HCMC by Lois and many children and grandchildren. The family is grateful to Douglas County Hospital, LifeLink medics, and the HCMC surgeons, nurses, and staff for giving Roy and his family additional days of life filled with loving, meaningful conversations. He was served well as he had served so many.
Roy was preceded in death by his parents, John and Marie; brothers, Harvey, Wally, and Gordy; and sisters, Helen and Mildred.
He is survived by his loving wife, Lois; children, Gail Swanson, Jeff (Cynthia) Johnson, and Kevin (Lyn) Johnson; as well as by grandchildren, Jessica Swanson, Daniel (Lacey), Justin, and Jennifer Johnson, and Nathaniel (Claire), Karin and Elise Johnson.
Pallbearers are his grandchildren.
Instead of flowers, memorials to Mt Carmel Ministries preferred.
Charitable donations may be made to:
Mount Carmel Ministries
800 Mt. Carmel Drive NE, Alexandria MN 56308
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