Obituary of Verne Johnson, Sr.
Verne Aloysius Johnson Sr., age 84, passed away peacefully in his sleep on Thursday, July 5, 2018. He was born on March 20, 1935, on the Lummi Reservation, to Victor and Amelia (Ballew) Johnson. When he was young his mother took him to visit the Elders to learn their traditional ways and would visit for 2 to 3 days at a time. Verne married Mary Lawrence on August 30, 1952. In 1958 he attended a Vocational College in Oregon studying to be a diesel mechanic. From 1960 - 1965 the family lived in San Francisco Bay Area, California under the Relocation Program. After moving back to Lummi in 1966, Verne worked at Intalco where he was a diesel mechanic and later became a maintenance supervisor. Retiring from there after 25 years he continued to be a Commercial Fisherman and worked as Security at the old Lummi Casino at Fisherman’s Cove. Following in his father’s footsteps he was on the Lummi Indian Business Council from 1994-1999. His focus was on the development of the water & sewer system for the Lummi Peninsula. He also served on the Law and Justice Committee. Verne was a devout Catholic. He was a loving, caring man who was always there when you needed him. He loved watching sports; the Mariners, Seahawks most especially University of Washington football, going for walks and going to lunch every day at Little Bear. Verne is preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Vendean and Victor “Turtle”; sister, Vivian & Corky Oneroad; son Verne Jr.; daughter Theresa Ann; great-grandson, Michael Jade Jefferson Johnson and numerous nieces and nephews. He is survived by his wife of 62 years Mary; children, Cheryl, Victoria (Micki) Dillon, Carol Norcross, David, Richard, daughter-in-law Andrea Johnson, Rosalynn Bland, Elizabeth Lawrence, George Lane, George & Lyle Lawrence and Cheri Morris; adopted cousins Perry & Dianna Adams; 10 grandchildren; 17 great-grandchildren and 3 great-great- grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews. Also surviving, are Verne’s sister Vivian’s daughters Mariann & Chuck Smith of Warm Springs, OR and Marie Miles of Portland, OR and their children and grandchildren. Verne’s brother Vendean’s children, Gloria “Henry” & Chuck Bowers, Vernon “Critter” & Ann Johnson, Jeanne & Dave Driscoll, Vennie Johnson and their children and grandchildren.A prayer service will be held Sunday, July 8, at 6:00pm. A funeral service will be Monday, July 9 at 10:00am.