Dr. Robert Johnson, age 89, of Appleton, a much loved father, husband, brother, doctor and community servant, passed away of heart failure with family beside him on Thursday, February 16, 2012. Bob dedicated his life to service, to his family, his community, his patients, his friends, and his church.
He was born March 12, 1922 in Appleton to parents Dr. Henry T. Johnson and Lillian M. Miller, and attended Appleton area public schools. After graduating from Lawrence University in 1943 he entered the Navy's midshipmen school at Notre Dame. He served with distinction as Skipper of LCT1034 in South Pacific combat. He was in the third wave of the invasion of Luzon, and attained a final rank of Lieutenant Junior grade.
Bob went on to follow in his father and brother's footsteps to study medicine, and graduated from the College of Osteopathic Medicine and Surgery in 1950. After serving an internship in Detroit he started practicing family medicine in Appleton October 1, 1951. Bob was respected and loved by thousands of patients and their families over the years.
He was president of Wisconsin Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons and was awarded “Practitioner of the Year” by the College of Osteopathic Family Practice in 1965. The governor of Wisconsin recognized his 55 years of practice in 2004 with a Certificate of Meritorious Service. Bob was a delegate from the state of Wisconsin for 22 years and was instrumental in forming the small state caucus. He was on the board of Fox Valley Chamber of Commerce and was a member of the board of the Appleton YMCA.
Bob was the 3rd President of the Fox Valley Symphony and sang for 25 years in the McDowell Male Chorus. Bob was a member of the Appleton Downtown Kiwanis Club and president for a year and a half. He was a member of Jaycees for 36 years and served as President. He was awarded “Citizen of the Year” in 1963. He was also a long-standing member of the Memorial Presbyterian Church and choir. He served 48 years on the Riverside Cemetery Association board, including 22 years as president.
In 1946, Bob married Ardith MacDonald, who preceded him in death in 1969. In 1972 he married Georgianna Degenhardt, who preceded him in death in 1999.
He is survived by his children: Karen Johnson, Kristen Johnson, Brian (Sandee) Johnson, Brent (Wendy) Johnson, Dan (Amy) Degenhardt and Kristin Degenhardt; his grandchildren: Tara Flippin, Tessa Flippin, Ardith Ohka, Ben Johnson, Henry Johnson, Cora (Jason) Pynenberg, John Degenhardt, Jason DeShon, and Rachelle DeShon; as well as great-grandchildren: Averick, Emani, Kaiden and Joshua.
A memorial service will be held at 11:00 AM on Saturday, March 24, 2012, at Memorial Presbyterian Church, 803 East College Avenue in Appleton, with Rev. Michael Goodwin officiating. Burial will be in Riverside Cemetery. Friends may call directly at the church on Saturday, March 24, from 10:00 AM until the time of the service.
In lieu of flowers, Memorials to Memorial Presbyterian Church, American Cancer Society.
He will be missed by many.
Wichmann Funeral Home
537 N. Superior Street
Appleton, WI 54911
920 739 1231