Roger D. Johnson, 63


The life of Roger Douglas Johnson, who many simply knew him as R.D., came to a close on Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013. A well-respected man by many people and by many standards there is no doubt that he will be greatly missed. He is survived by his loving wife Lavonda (nee Ball) Johnson of 41 years, sons James, 29, and William, 25, both of Milwaukee, along with the family’s beloved 14-year-old dog, Ella. He is further survived by his two sisters Jeanette (Duane) Fryer of Brooksville, Fla., and Vicki (Raymond) Jorgensen of Racine, and many nieces and nephews.

Roger was born on Nov. 29, 1949, in Racine, to Frederick and Anna (nee Krizan) Johnson. He graduated from Racine Horlick High School in 1968. He then enlisted in the United States Marine Corps where he served in Vietnam. Upon his return to the United States, he was selected to serve in Marine Helicopter Squadron One (HMX-1). While serving in the Marine Corps, he earned the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal and the Vietnam Service Medal with three Bronze Stars.

While stationed in Quantico, Va., he met his wife, Lavonda, and was united in marriage on Nov. 3, 1972. After being honorably discharged from the Marine Corps, he and his wife returned to his hometown of Racine, where he attended Gateway Technical College in Kenosha. Upon his graduation, he became a member of the Wisconsin Army National Guard, where he served as a crew chief in the 832nd Medical Company in West Bend, Wisconsin. During his service, he had more than 3,000 flight hours and was at the center of countless rescue operations. He retired in 2005 after 37 years of service to his country.

Roger not only took great pride in serving his country, but also his community. Roger was the scout master of Troop 762 in West Bend from 1991 2010. Known simply as Mr. J to his scouts, he helped 51 young men attain the rank of Eagle Scout. Service projects performed by his scouts can be seen all around the West Bend area. He took great pride both his service to his community and being able to have a positive impact on the lives of many young men.

A military service will take place at 10 a.m. Friday, Oct. 4, 2013, at the Southern Wisconsin Veterans Memorial Cemetery located in Union Grove, followed by lunch at Infusino’s Restaurant located on Rapids Drive in Racine. On Saturday, Oct. 5, a celebration of his life will occur at Ridge Run County Park, town of West Bend, accessible using the south entrance off of Scenic Drive and Wheat Ridge Lane, starting at 2 p.m. and ending 6 p.m. Food and beverages will be provided, and the family asks you to bring a memory of Roger to share.

Roger’s life was about helping others and donations to the following charities’ in his memory would be greatly appreciated: Kathy Hospice: 3232 Pleasant Valley Road, West Bend, WI 53095 Wounded Warrior Project: P.O. Box 758517 Topeka, KS 66675 Friends of Quetico Park: P.O. Box 29127, Thunder Bay ON P7B 6P9 Canada Donations can also be made online.

The family would like express their gratitude for the impeccable care provided by Roger’s medical team including Dr. Edward Quebbeman of the Medical College of Wisconsin, Dr. John Burfeind of St. Joseph’s Hospital and nurse Linda Selle of the Kathy Hospice, who cared for him in his final days.