Robert Johnson


Robert Everil “Rick” Johnson Jr., 66, Bismarck, died March 12, 2012, at home. His life will be celebrated at 2 p.m. Friday, March 16, at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Bismarck, with the Rev. Craig Schweitzer officiating. Burial will be held at Sunset Memorial Gardens, Bismarck.

Visitation will be held from 3 to 9 p.m. Thursday at Eastgate Funeral Service, Bismarck, where a Masonic service will begin at 7 p.m. followed by a prayer service.

Rick was born Nov. 11, 1945, in Gordon, Neb., to Robert Everil and Alzora Maxine (Elwood) Johnson Sr. He attended elementary school in Haysprings and Chadron, Neb. Rick graduated from Custer High School in Custer, S.D., in 1964 and from Black Hills State College in 1968.

On Aug. 26, 1967, Rick married Kathleen Beth Straight in Hyattville, Wyo. To this marriage were born three children.

In the fall of 1968, Rick began his coaching/teaching career in Selby, S.D. He went on to teach and coach in Wall and Lemmon, S.D. During this time, Rick enjoyed his career officiating Class B, Class A, and NAIA basketball and high school football. While in Lemmon, Rick began working for Great Plains Supply Company. In 1983, he moved to Rugby as a District Manager. Through the years, he continued to work in the lumber business as they became UBC and Pro Build, whom he was employed with as an Area Vice President at the time of his death.

Rick enjoyed membership in Masonic Crescent Lodge 210-Wall, S.D., Lemmon Commandery No. 25-Lemmon, S.D., Royal Arch Mason-Lemmon Chapter No. 44, and the Naja Temple of Deadwood, S.D. He also was a member of the Rugby Fraternal Order of the Eagles-Aerie 3834 and the Bismarck-Mandan Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks No. 1199

Rick had a strong love of God, family, and friends. He tried to never miss a contemporary service at Good Shepherd, a family gathering, or any sporting events. He was an avid Nebraska Cornhusker fan and stated that he bled Husker Red. He was a proud Husker season ticket holder for four years and shared the love of Husker Nation with his family. Another passion of Rick’s was being a long-time Dakota Wizards season ticket holder.

Blessed to have shared his life are his wife, Kathleen; his three children, Clarke Craig (Tammy) Johnson, Wilton, Robert Wade Johnson, Denver, Colo., and Rikki Beth (Jay) Townsend, Wahpeton; four grandchildren, Zachary Craig Johnson, Zadie Jo Johnson, LilyBeth Kathleen Townsend, and Jerrick Ross Townsend; and his brother, Marc Craig (Pat) Johnson, Boise, Idaho.

Rick was preceded in death by his parents; his grandparents, Robert Earl and Nelle Johnson, Sumner and Ruth Elwood; father-in-law, Daniel W. Straight; stepfather-in-law, Norman Cope; and a beloved uncle, Lyle Elwood, Rushville, Neb.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorials be sent to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Go to to share memories of Rick and sign the online guest book.


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