Cover photo for Lois Geraldine (Gerry) Johnson's Obituary

Lois Geraldine (Gerry) Johnson

Lois Geraldine (Gerry) Johnson

Gerry was born April 22, 1924 in Farmersburg, Indiana. She was the first of five children born to Lewis and Sarah Francis Stine.  Life on a small farm was not always easy and there was very little money but there were many friends and neighbors who helped each other.  Gerry learned how to sew at an early age because it was a necessity, due to a lack of money.  She later made most of the clothing for her family, including suits for her husband.  She also enjoyed home decorating.

Gerry attended school in Farmersburg, graduating cum laude in 1945.  She loved going to school.  Farmersburg was a small town; friendships developed that lasted a lifetime.  She always dreamed that she might be able to go on to college, but that was not possible; the family still had a financial struggle.  Even so, the family somehow sacrificed so that Gerry could take violin and piano lessons from a Mrs. Drake of Sullivan, Indiana.

Immediately upon graduation from high school, Gerry accepted an office job in Terra Haute at a coal company (a strip-mining operation) named Maumee Collieries.  Through her job she met her future husband, Bill.  They were married on November 30, 1945.  They had three beautiful children.  She began working with her children in 4-H Club activities and, later when the family moved to Wilmington, Delaware, she even helped establish a 4-H Club in their new community.  Everywhere she went she was ready to help when needed and served as a Sunday School teacher.  She also did various activities for her children’s school and helped in various church related jobs.  She was a devoted P.E.O. member (Philanthropic Educational Organization: to celebrate, educate and motivate women).

After her children were nearly grown, Gerry started working part time as a secretary in the nursing department of Boise State University.  She also started taking a few classes, as time permitted, always with an eye to the time when her last little chick left the nest.  Finally, she was going full time, finally realizing a dream of being able to go to college.  Her major was in Home Economics; she qualified for on-going academic scholarships.  She finished her degree at Northwest Nazarene University, where at age fifty years old, she graduated cum laude.  The year was 1974.

Upon her graduation from Northwest Nazarene, she was urged to continue her education at the University of Idaho in Moscow.  There she obtained a master’s degree in Home Economics—Clothing Education.  During this time, she was teaching part-time at Boise State University.  After graduation, she taught full-time until retirement in 1982.

Gerry was not a lady who could sit around with nothing much to do.  She promptly joined the volunteers at St. Alphonsus Hospital and worked until her husband, Bill, retired and they began traveling with their Airstream Trailer.  They joined the Wally Byram Club (WBCCI) and caravanned throughout the United States and Canada.

In 1994 they became members of the Mobile Missionary Assistance Program (MMAP), a non-denominational Christian volunteer organization, assisting in needy churches, camps, and missions assisting groups who needed help, were short of money, but could afford to buy materials for repair or new construction.  Gerry was a member of the New Hope Church of the Nazarene.

Gerry is survived her two daughters and one son, Pamela Stricklin, Alan Johnson, and Anita Brewer, numerous grandchildren, and great grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held on Thursday, February 9, at 10 a.m. at Boise New Hope Church of the Nazarene, 8585 W. Overland Rd., Boise.

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