Longtime Sandy resident Howard Johnson, 96, died peacefully at Avamere Assisted Living in Sandy on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2012. Howard Wesley Johnson was born on March 16, 1915, in Wisconsin.
As a young teen, the family moved to Ava, Mo., where Howard took over the farm for his grandfather Hahn. When Howard was 17, his father passed away. He continued working on the family farm and also cared for his grandparents.
On Aug. 10, 1935, Howard was united in marriage to Evalyn M. Houck. They made their home in Ava, Mo., and began their family. In 1943, the family moved to Michigan, where Howard was employed as a welder during the war. Prior to moving to Oregon, they lived in Mt. Etna, Iowa.
It was while the family was on a vacation to visit relatives in Sandy, Ore., that Howard and the family realized that this would eventually become home. During the vacation, Howard went to work at Tupper Lumber Company which became his place of employment after moving his family to Sandy.
In the mid-1950s, Howard and Evelyn moved to Seattle, Wash., where he worked at Boeing. Four years later, they moved to Hood River, Ore., and Howard continued his career as a machinist at the aluminum company in The Dalles. There was a change in management, so Howard took an early retirement from there and pursued his machine business at his home up until he was up into his late 80s.
It was six years ago when his health began to decline and he returned to Sandy to live near his son and family.
Howard was a life-long member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church where he was actively involved in various forms of ministry. He was a pilot for many years and was a part of the Civil Air Patrol while living in Hood River. He flew over Mount Hood and has 900 hours of flight time to his credit. While flying with the Air Patrol, he found a downed aircraft.
Howard took much pride, pleasure and well-invested time working in his machine shop. He always had some type of project that he was involved in as he was not known to be one to "sit still." He built two sawmills in Hood River and one at his son's home in Sandy.
Howard is preceded in death by his wife Evelyn in 2006, after 72 years of marriage.
He is survived by his son, John Johnson, of Sandy; his daughters, Donna Helt and Joyce Randrup, both of Donaphin, Mo.; six grandchildren, 12 great-grandchildren and 11 great-great-grandchildren.
Sandy Funeral Home is in care of the arrangements. (P.O. Box 41, Sandy, OR 97055; 503-668-6150)
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