The Whitehall Ledger - Serving Southern Jefferson County in the Great State of Montana



March 29, 2017

George G. Johnson died at the age of 93 on May 22, 2017 with his family by his side. George was born in Mason City, Iowa on May 16, 1923 to Violet and Ole Johnson. He was one of seven children.

George and his family moved to Glendive, Montana where they made their home for many years. He was an employee of the Northern Pacific Railroad when he was called to serve his nation in 1943. George was drafted into the Navy and served on the USS Hamlin (AV-15), a seaplane/aviation tender. Seaplanes tended by the Hamlin made important contributions to the Pacific fighting by engaging in reconnaissance, hunter-killer operations against submarines, and air coverage of fleet cripples. George served throughout the Pacific theater and was onboard the ship in the Tokyo harbor the day Japan surrendered.

George returned to Glendive at the end of his service and went back to work for the Northern Pacific Railroad. He married Betty Gene Ward in 1946 and their union blessed them with five children. George's career with the railroad took him, and his family, to Mandan, North Dakota, Livingston and Springdale, Montana. Upon his retirement from the railroad, George and Betty moved to Whitehall in 1982 where they stayed for the remainder of their lives.

After 57 years of marriage, George lost his wife and partner in 2003.

He is proceeded in death by his parents, his wife Betty, two sons, Larry and Bobby Johnson, two brothers, Ole and Gary Johnson, and a sister Janaire (Johnson) Reed.

George is survived by his brother Will Johnson of Billings, his sisters June Matovich of Columbus and Joyce Pietz, of Billings; his children Patsy Ballard, Marty (Tammy) Johnson and Calvin (Michelle) Johnson, all of Whitehall, his daughters-in-law Ann (Bobby) Johnson of Terry and Jodi (Bob) Smiley of Boulder; 18 grandchildren: David (Deidra) Johnson of Terry; Wendy (Kreig) Henman of Boise, ID; Stephanie (Tracy) Forcella of Whitehall; Travis (Jodi) Chapel of Billings; Ben (Nancy) Johnson of Whitefish; Cliff (Carrie) Johnson of Sandpoint, ID; Wesley Chapel of Billings; Jamie (Paul) Ballard of Whitehall; Courtney Johnson of Whitehall; Clint (Laura) Johnson of Great Falls; Erik (Devra) Johnson of Missoula; Ashley Makowski of Helena; Ben Makowski of Boulder; Tiffany (Cody) Frey of Missoula; Brittany (Austin) Johnson of Bozeman; Alex Johnson, Connor Johnson, and Meagan Johnson, all of Whitehall; numerous great grandchildren, great-great grandchildren, nieces and nephews.


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