American Patriotic 10

       


Benjamin Johnson

April 11, 2018

Loving husband, beloved father and grandfather, Benjamin James Johnson, age 70, of Sidney, Ohio, formerly of Paqtnkek Mi’kmaw Nation walked on to be with our Creator April 11, 2018 at his home in Sidney surrounded by his family.  He was born in Antigonish, Nova Scotia, Canada on June 6, 1947 to the late Frank Johnson and Margaret (Simon) Johnson Paulette.

Benjamin is survived by his wife of almost 46 years: Judy H. Johnson; daughter: Tammy Beard (husband James) Henrico, Virginia; Shining Light of his eyes, Three Grandsons: James Benjamin, Gabriel, and Parker; sisters: Doris Hanscomb (Earlin) Perth-Andover, New Brunswick and Mary Jane Paulette, Paqtnkek Mi’kmaw Nation, Nova Scotia; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.  He was preceded in death by Parents: Frank and Margaret Johnson; Brothers: Rodrick, Daniel, and James (Jumbo) Johnson.

In the early 1960s, his family emigrated from Nova Scotia to Fort Fairfield, Maine where he worked as a potato farm hand to help support his family and in the summer went to Southern Maine to rake blueberries.  It was also during this time that he was known to the children of Fort Fairfield as Bozo.  The children nicknamed him this because of his ability to bring laughter into their lives and remind them of Bozo the Clown. Everyone from that time forward knew him only as Bozo.  He was drafted into the United States Army in October 1966, serving his first tour in Vietnam as a UH-1 Helicopter Mechanic.  Being discharged from the Army in September 1968, he returned to Maine, resuming employment with the potato farms.

Due to his patriotic desire to serve this country, he enlisted to serve in the US Army again in November 1970. (Being a Canadian citizen, they would not allow him to go to Vietnam either time.  He had to go to his Congresswoman to get an exception made.)  He received his acceptance letter to work for Sikorsky Aircraft working on helicopters, but as he had already enlisted the timing was not right.  Looking back on that missed opportunity, he would not have changed it because he would have missed meeting Judy.  During his second tour in Vietnam, he worked as the night-time Non Commissioned Officer In Charge.  Due to his leadership and technical ability, he achieved 100% flyability of the helicopters.  During his service to his country, he received the Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm, Vietnam Service Medal with one Silver Star and one Bronze Star, as well as other medals and badges.  On March 3, 1971, unbeknownst to him at the time, he met the love of his life, Judy Higgins, at Fort Sam Houston, Texas.  He always said, “The Army provided me with food, clothing, and shelter.  It might as well provide me with a wife, too.”  They were married on April 15, 1972, at Fort Benning, Georgia, upon his return from his second tour of duty in Vietnam.  He served in the Army until November 1976 when he received a medical discharge.  Following his discharge he worked as a Plastic Extrusion Operator in Columbus, Georgia, as Apartment and Hotel Maintenance in South Carolina and Colorado, a Forklift Operator and Warehouse Supervisor for the Commissary in Fuerth, Germany, a Forklift Operator at Fort Devens, Massachusetts, and lastly, a Forklift Operator for Simms Brothers at the Honda Plant in Anna, Ohio.

He was very talented with his hands and could fix, build, and make anything.  He built a 4-car wooden train in his backyard for his grandchildren to play on.  He was giving, always helping others and never wanting anything in return.  His favorite past times were cooking, gardening and flowers, knitting stuffed pigs for his grandchildren, dishcloths for his family and friends, woodworking, making dreamcatchers, keychains, and dreamcatcher earrings, and listening to Johnny Cash.  From washing dishes on the front lawn with a water hose to calling his favorite waitress on the telephone while sitting at his table asking where his coffee was, he loved to play pranks on unsuspecting neighbors, friends, and grandchildren always bringing laughter into everyone’s lives.  He will be truly missed for his witty comebacks, his sense of humor, and his love for his family and friends.  He is now reunited with his favorite pet fish, Harold, who drowned when Ben took him for a walk and let him take a swim, at least this is the story he told his daughter, Tammy, when she was little.

Family and friends will gather from 4:00-7:00 PM on Tuesday, April 17, 2018, at Adams Funeral Home, 1401 Fair Road, Sidney, OH.  Burial will be at a later date in Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, DC with military honors.

Memorial contributions may be made to Hospice of Miami County, P. O. Box 502, Troy, OH 45373.  Condolences may be expressed to the family at www.theadamsfuneralhome.com.


Donations may be made to:

Hospice of Miami County
P. O. Box 502, Troy OH 45373


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