Cover photo for Raymond Johnson's Obituary
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1956 Raymond 2024

Raymond Johnson

November 28, 1956 — January 31, 2024

Morris, Minnesota

Raymond Dale Johnson was born on  November 28, 1956.

He was 67 years old.

Parents:  Ingvald (Ingy) and Hazel Johnson, Benson Minnesota.

Married:  July 30, 1983 to Jane Marie Fischer at St. Johns Lutheran Church in rural Holloway.

Children:  Damon Johnson and partner Davianne Jones -Moorhead MN; Joshua and Stephanie (Voss) Johnson – Moscow ID; Solomon Johnson – Morris, MN.

Siblings – Craig (Bonnie) Johnson -Plymouth; Keith (Ann) Johnson – New Prague, MN; Wanda Philbrick Benson; Dana (Mary), Johnson, Fargo.

Proceeded in death by his parents, and brothers Craig and Keith. Sister in-law Sherry Wentler.

 

He is survived by his wife Jane, his sons Damon, Josh and Solomon, sister Wanda, brother Dana, sister in laws: Mary Johnson, Bonnie Johnson, Ann Johnson; in-laws: Don and Diane Fischer, Carol and Mike Banken, Patty and Rick Bahl, many nieces, nephews, aunts and uncles.

 

Ray was called home on January 31, 2024 after a valiant battle with Parkinson’s disease.

 

Ray’s parents were Ingvald (Ingy) and Hazel Johnson, Benson Minnesota. He attended Benson High School, graduating in 1976. Ray eventually earned an Associates Degree from Wilmar Technical College. He met Jane Marie Fischer in 1977, beginning their lifelong adventure. Ray and Jane were married July 30, 1983 at St. Johns Lutheran Church in rural Holloway. They welcomed their first child, Damon, on New Year’s Eve, 1987.

 

Life took the family to St. Paul, MN. They welcomed their second son, Josh in 1990. Ray watched the kids during the week while Jane returned to school, and on weekends he worked security for the Timberwolves Basketball franchise. Ray was proud to be among the first event security guards for the Wolves, providing security for the franchise at the Metro Dome. Once the Target Center was established, he shifted to building security working the early morning shift so he could spend afternoons with his kids. His job came with free tickets to events at the Target Center. Ray loved taking his boys to Wolves games and concerts; memories they continue to cherish. When Jane secured her first job out of graduate school as an Assistant Professor in Stevens Point, WI, Ray packed up and moved to support her once again. He never missed an opportunity to call her “Dr. Johnson” with pride in their shared achievements. In Wisconsin, Ray worked part-time so he could be home and care for his boys after school. As they got older, he went to work full-time at Trinity Lutheran Church as the custodian.

 

In 2000, Jane changed jobs and took the family back to Morris, MN. The family welcomed their third son, Solomon, in 2001, and Ray became a stay-at-home dad until Solomon started school. Ray held several jobs in Morris over the years, but his most notable was serving as a driver for MediVan. This work saw him transport people in need to their medical appointments, sometimes driving many hours with his clients to reach various specialists’ offices. He was known for being kind and compassionate with his clients and was in his element with people. He enjoyed hearing and sharing stories with his clients and their families. In 2011, the Parkinson’s symptoms became apparent and by 2014 he was no longer able to drive for MediVan.

 

In summer 2014, he and Solomon explored the Washington DC area while Jane’s work took her Beltsville MD for a temporary appointment. It was a spectacular summer, making wonderful memories before his diagnosis progressed, visiting monuments and museums, and watching Fourth of July fireworks from the Nation’s Capital Stairs. Upon returning to Morris, Ray continued working part-time in custodial services until he could no longer work due to his advancing Parkinson’s.

 

Ray was a jovial, caring, and gentle family man. He built his professional life around his family, always working odd jobs to support his wife’s career and take care of his kids. Regardless, he took great pride in all his work, and taught his boys that the value of a man is not measured by his titles or salaries, but by the respect, love, and joy he could bring to those around him. Ray brought these in spades to everyone he touched. He always prioritized his boys, faithfully attending his son’s events - from little league baseball, football, track, cross-country, band, orchestra and choral concerts. He was so proud of his boys. He loved them with his entire being, and they all miss their Father.

 

In his personal life he was a music buff, listening to a wide range of genres from rock and roll to new age, progressive, and classical. The stereo was first thing set up and the last to be packed during our many moves. In addition, he enjoyed movies in the theatres or his home theatre with family. He also loved the outdoors, tending his properties, or taking long walks, hiking, camping, and canoeing with his family. We traveled to many states and National Parks across the country – he piloted and Jane navigated.  They had a few detours over the years, but never got so lost they couldn’t find their way home.

 

Ray’s battle with Parkinson’s disease progressed relentlessly; bit by bit robbing us all of the man he once was. Eventually, the family moved Ray to Homestead North, Benson MN, in February 2021 to get the care he needed. He received many visits from friends and family, even though he could not communicate well. His family remains forever grateful for each visit that he was blessed with during these challenging years. In the end, he was surrounded by his family as he crossed the great divide to his next adventure.

 

A special thanks to Lexi, Gina, Emily, Jasmine and Da’shaun as well as the others that helped with his care over the years at Homestead North. They hold a special place in Jane’s heart for their kindness. Sincere gratitude to Lacey and Chantel and the rest of the Knute-Nelson Hospice team, they were a blessing.

 

Thank-you to Don Fischer for crafting the urn with black walnut wood from our home.

 

Also, thank-you friends, neighbors, family and colleagues for support, kind words and acts of kindness.  


Memorials preferred to the Parkinson's Foundation; www.parkinson.org or Knute Nelson Hospice.

Pedersen Funeral Home in Morris is in care of arrangements for Ray. 

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Raymond Johnson, please visit our flower store.
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Service Schedule

Past Services

Raymond Johnson Visitation

Saturday, February 3, 2024

2:00 - 5:00 pm (Central time)

Pedersen Funeral & Cremation Service

101 South Atlantic Avenue, Morris, MN 56267

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Raymond Johnson Visitation

Sunday, February 4, 2024

1:00 - 2:00 pm (Central time)

First Lutheran Church

200 E 5th St, Morris, MN 56267

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Raymond Johnson Memorial Service

Sunday, February 4, 2024

2:00 - 3:00 pm (Central time)

First Lutheran Church

200 E 5th St, Morris, MN 56267

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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