Joan M. Johnson, 66, of Merrill, died Saturday, Jan. 15, 2005, on her family farm, embraced by the Lord and surrounded by her family.
Joan Marilyn Clark was born Jan. 29, 1938, in Sioux City, the daughter of Lyman and Ayleen (Hamilton) Clark. She was raised in the Merrill area and graduated from Merrill High School. Joan was united in marriage to Gerald Johnson on Dec. 1, 1956, in Merrill. The couple farmed on the family farm South of Merrill for 48 years. Joan's deepest passion was farming with her husband and spending time with her family and friends.
Joan enjoyed gardening, caring for her horses and being outdoors. She loved all of the seasons, especially the winter. She was happiest when she was cooking and caring for others.
She was a devoted member of the United Methodist Church in Merrill, serving as a Sunday School teacher and belonging to the U.M.W. She was an active member of the Sweet Adelines, Plymouth County Cowbells, Plymouth County Historical Museum, Merrill Saddle Club, and had served on the election board for several years. She loved to sing in church and especially enjoyed performing duets with her longtime friend, Margaret Marineau.
Joan was blessed with many friends, all of whom she cherished, especially her lifelong beloved friend LaVon Holton. Joan was the heart and strength of her family and is deeply missed and eternally loved.
Survivors include her husband of 48 years, Gerald of Merrill; three children and spouses, Kim and Jim Jauer of Hinton, Clark and Andrea Johnson of Hinton, and Mitchell and Shery Johnson of Merrill; seven grandchildren and spouses, Stephanie and Mike Morran, Jeremiah and Crystal Jauer, Alicia Jauer and fiancé Matt Harper, Bridget Johnson, Meggan Johnson, Brandon Curry and Lacey Curry; two great-grandchildren, Bailee Jauer and Garrett Morran; a brother, Larry Clark and his wife, Diana of Merrill; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Harold and Phyllis Johnson of Merrill; an uncle, Wayne Hamilton and his wife Esther of Merrill; other aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews.
Joan was preceded in death by her parents, Lyman and Ayleen Clark and Ayleen's twin sister Arleen Rath.
Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Tuesday at the Hinton United Methodist Church with the Revs. Benjamin Meeks and Jason Gutzmer officiating. Interment will be in the Hillside Cemetery. Visitations will be after 3 p.m. today (Monday) at the Carlsen Funeral Home in Le Mars. The family will be present to greet friends after 5 p.m. and there will be a prayer service at 7 p.m. at the funeral home. Visitation will continue Tuesday morning at the church from 10 a.m. until service time.