Bennie Ray “PaPa” Johnson
Bennie Ray “PaPa” Johnson, born Dec. 13, 1933, in Austin, passed away Tuesday, June 6, 2006.
He was a loving husband, great father and step-father, grandfather, great grandfather, great great grandfather, uncle, brother, son and veteran. Bennie Ray was a kind and generous father and he will be dearly missed by all of his family and friends.
After proudly serving
his country in the United States Navy, Bennie Ray went on to retire from the Maintenance Shop at the University of Texas in Austin, where he had worked as a roofer. He and his wife, Clarene, ultimately established a home in Lytton Springs, Texas.
Aside from working as an Electrical Apprentice while on active duty in the U.S. Navy, he was also a pitcher on their fast-pitch softball league. Following his honorable discharge, he continued to play fast-pitch softball for the Austin Baseball League for many years and was known to most during those years as “Tex” and “Swede.” PaPa loved the game of baseball and was an avid sportsman. He would always say that he had had a good life, but that it had been hard on his body.
Bennie Ray was preceded in death by his loving wife of 40 years, Clarene Headrick Johnson; his parents, Hugo Johnson and Volena (Davis) Johnson; his sister, Dorothy Johnson Sites and his brother, Hugo Johnson.
He is survived by his children, Cindy Johnson Reeves and husband Kenneth of Dale, Sandra Hall and husband Richard of Tow, Ray Edwards and wife Licia of Lytton Springs, Kathy Edwards Johnson of Austin and Donna Brown and husband Walter of Battle Creek, Mich.; ten grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; brothers, Billy Gene Johnson and wife Della of Luling, Jesse Johnson and wife Pat of Austin and Richard Johnson and partner Wayne of Nantucket, N.Y.; numerous nieces, nephews and other relatives and a host of friends.
The family would like to extend their heartfelt appreciation to Dr. Kirtley of Lockhart for his compassion and care for over 16 years; a special thanks to Mary Jo Hart and staff at the Austin Pain Clinic for their extended care; to Dr. Sayers of Austin for his compassion and assistance; to Dr. Oswalt and staff at the Austin Heart Hospital; to Dr. Zeineddin of the Texas Cardiovascular Consultants in Austin; to Dr. Weston, Dr. Hudson and the staff of the South Austin Hospital; to the doctors and staff at the St. David Rehab facility, and lastly, a special thank you to the doctors and staff at the Health South Rehab facility who cared for our father, unknowingly, close to the end of his journey. Also, a very special thank you to the home healthcare providers Lifeway and Accumed, who extended services during his lengthy failing health and for their gentle care and continued attention.
A special thank you to the Sunshine Café in Lockhart for the gracious service by its wonderful employees, the great food (Dad loved his desserts), and the conversation and compassion from the wonderful patrons. Also, a very special thank you to NaNa”s Kitchen in Tow for their wonderful service and compassionate attention and friendship while Dad resided in Tow enjoying his fishing, which he loved to do.
Funeral services were held at 11 a.m. on Monday, June 12, 2006, in the McCurdy Memorial Chapel. Funeral arrangements were entrusted to McCurdy Funeral Home, 105 E. Pecan St., Lockhart, TX 78644, (512) 398-4791.