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Hugh JohnsonOctober 6, 1926 ~ September 4, 2017 (age 90)
Hubert Eugene Johnson, age 90, of Grand Rapids passed into the arms of His Savior proclaiming, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant!” on September 4, 2017 surrounded by his adoring bride of 68 years, his children, and grandchildren.
Hugh was born in New England, North Dakota on October 6, 1926 to Hans Louis Johnson and Kari (Bakke) Johnson, the second of three children. He graduated New England High School in 1944 at 17 years old, anxious to join the Navy. After serving on the U.S.S. Veritas during World War II, he returned home by the grace of God on an office error and entered Business College. Hugh’s employment career began as a small business owner, but as an act of faith he packed up his family and attended Moody Bible Institute, graduating in 1963. A highlight during that time was working as office manager with the Billy Graham team in Chicago during the Crusade in 1962. He later took his gifting in sales to Christian Publishing, bringing him to Grand Rapids to work for Zondervan for 21 years.
Hugh’s life was devoted to the Lord Jesus Christ from the age of 30 on and he poured over His Bible continually, memorizing and feeding a deep passion for teaching others to love Jesus and His Word. He started and taught adult classes for professionals and young married families at Calvary Church and regularly held Bible studies in his home for new Christians to grow in the faith he held so dearly. After retirement, Hugh continued his ministry of lay counseling to help Christians find their identity and freedom in Christ as he launched Truth Triumphant, serving other believers through this ministry into his 80s, and mentoring until his death.
On February 28, 1949 Hugh married the love of his life, Joyce Fern Bernhoft who survives. Also surviving are two sons, Timothy and Susan (Woolpert) Johnson of Kalamazoo, MI, Hugh and Carrie (Crum) Johnson of Auburn, Washington, and four daughters, Vicki and Tony DeGrazier of Grand Rapids, MI, Kara and Ilmar Arviko of Markham, Ontario, Canada, Meryl and Jeff VanderWeide of Rockford, MI, Coleen and David Bronkema of Belmont, MI; 21 amazing grandchildren, 12 precious great-grandchildren, and spiritual son, Bill Pahl; one brother Hans (Jay) Johnson of San Diego, California, and one sister Estelle Spottiswoode of London, England. Anyone who knew Hugh knew how much he adored and was adored by his family. He was a true Patriarch.
The family will receive friends at the Metcalf & Jonkhoff Funeral Chapel from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. on Friday, September 8. The funeral service will be held 11:00 a.m. Saturday at Calvary Church chapel, 707 E. Beltline Ave. NE. Private interment for family.