Today at 7:45am Pacific, my Godmother Dorothy Johnson of Glen Ellen, CA passed away from cancer at the age of 89.
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What I will remember most was, whenever I spoke with her she always said, "David, I am so proud of you! You turned out so good!" She would always end the call with "I love you David." Looking back, I think she firmly understood that it is important to set the bar for people in life and her praise was really more about encouragement and looking forward, rather than looking backward. Dorothy was born in 1927 and needless to say she saw a tremendous amount in her lifetime.
The last time we went out to lunch was in March of this year. My wife Julie was there, along with our oldest son John, John's wife Janet and Lynn. At the end of the lunch I asked Dorothy, "Dorothy, you lived a long time, what was the happiest day of your life?" Lynn looked at me and then Dorothy with a look of, "that's an interesting question." She replied, "it was not one day, but two days. The day Jim came back from the war and the day that Lynn came back." She then went on to tell me the story of how Jim extended his tour to make sure that his brother would not have to extend his tour. This had to do with two brothers being in combat during the same tour.
Above is a photo from my blog post last summer when we went out to CA for a family vacation. While we did a lot of cool things, to me the highlight was seeing my mother (on the right) and my Aunt Dorothy below just get together and talk. My mother, Aunt Dorothy and their sister Mary used to speak EVERY night. Let me repeat that every night. I know this is a big loss to my mother and my aunt Mary, but when you look at the incredible health challenges Dorothy had the past few months, she is in a much better place.
Below is my all time favorite photo of Dorothy and me in my 1998 Corvette after we went for a spirited ride in 2007 when she visited out in VA. This is how I am going to remember Dorothy Johnson....
Below are photos from Dorothy's Memorial Service.
Above are John and Janet in front of the Church where they had the service.
Above is a photo album showing my mother's painting she made of the farm where Dorothy, my mother, their sister Mary, brothers Tat, Donnie and Carl. Their parents were Melvin and Dora Thompson.
Below is one of Dorothy's favorite sweaters she received from her family.