WILLIAM O. JOHNSONWilliam O. Johnson, 83, passed away peacefully with his family by his side Friday, Oct. 11, 2013, in St. Mary's hospice in Duluth.
WILLIAM O. JOHNSON
William O. Johnson, 83, passed away peacefully with his family by his side Friday, Oct. 11, 2013, in St. Mary's hospice in Duluth.
Bill was born Dec. 22, 1929, to Oscar and Clara (Floodmen) Johnson of Duluth. He grew up in the Duluth Heights and was a graduate of Duluth Central High School, class of 1948. From 1948-1950, Bill was a member of the Army National Guard. He then joined the Air Force, became a fighter pilot and fought in the Korean War. He flew 100 combat missions over MIG Alley during the Korean War and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and two Air Medals.
Following the war, Bill returned to Minnesota and attended the University of Minnesota from 1954 to 1959, graduating with a doctorate degree in dentistry. He then practiced dentistry from 1959 to 1994 in the Medical Arts Building in downtown Duluth. Following the Korean War, Bill also joined the 148th Fighter Interceptor Group, Minnesota Air National Guard. There, he flew many of the unit's fighter jets and retired in 1980 from the State Staff as a Colonel.
Bill was a member of the Duluth Dental Forum, Northeast Dental Society, Minnesota Dental Society, American Dental Society, the 148th Retirees Association, Duluth Noon Optimists, American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Air Force Association.
In retirement, Bill enjoyed life at his home on Caribou Lake with his wife, Lois, of 50 years and his family. He enjoyed taking rides on the pontoon boat, hosting friends and family, and watching sunsets across the lake.
He was preceded in death by his parents; wife Lois; and brother Charles (Joann) Johnson.
Bill is survived by his sons, Steven (Carolyn) Johnson and Gregory (Lori) Johnson; daughter Laura Johnson; grandchildren Ben, Caitlin, John, Maria, Enrique and Isabel; brother John (Marlene) Johnson; and extended family and friends.
VISITATION: 1 until the 2 p.m. service Friday, Oct. 18, in Trinity Lutheran Church, 1108 E. Eighth St., Duluth, with Rev. Jerome Evavold officiating.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Bill's honor to Trinity Lutheran Church are appreciated.
Arrangements entrusted to the Cremation Society of Minnesota, (218) 624-5200.