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  • Kent Casson

Obituary: Johnson

Robert Raymond “Bob” Johnson, age 84, of Dubuque, IA, completed his earthly journey on April 25, 2024, at 11:11 AM, at home, surrounded by his loving family.  

To honor Bob’s life, a private family service with full military honors will be held at a later date.  

Bob was born on January 18, 1940, in Novinger, MO, a son to Arthur James and Phyllis Mildred (Watson) Johnson.  Bob loved his family mightily, embraced life and all it had to offer, and continually served as a positive force to those around him.  Bob honorably served his country with the U.S. Navy during the early years of the Korean Conflict and upon returning, Bob located in Elizabeth, IL, where his parents had recently moved.  It was there he met his bride-to-be during church services at the local Methodist Church.

It was love at first sight for the new veteran when he saw the lovely Linda (Lindy) Hutchison singing in the church choir.  They met and were married just six months later June 17, 1960.  During their first years of marriage, they brought four children into the world (twins Cindy and Sandy, followed by Julie and then Bobby) while residing in Elizabeth, and Denver, Colorado.  

In late summer 1963, the family of six moved to Chenoa, Illinois, where Bob began his career in various capacities focused on troubled adults and students.  Bob helped these individuals find a better path by providing compassionate supervision, counseling, life skills development and hope.  Bob carried out these duties faithfully as a parole agent for the State of Illinois and as a counselor for the local School District.  

While working and raising four children with Lindy, Bob found the time and energy to earn a bachelor’s degree in Corrections at Illinois State University, graduating in 1975.  Bob faced each day with an infectious optimism.  Bob sought to light up the lives of those around him.  Bob also understood that in conjunction with life’s responsibilities, he needed to set time aside for family and fun.  Bob found himself in the fortunate position to be able to retire in 1992 and took the opportunity to redirect his focus.

In retirement, Bob enjoyed afternoons exploring in his kayak whenever possible, whether chasing alligators in winter by his Florida home or in the backwaters of the Mississippi by the houseboat during the summer months.  He and Lindy took advantage of many excursions throughout the years and experienced firsthand many locations on his bucket list. Bob was an avid Harry Potter fan as well and devoted countless hours to the stories and lessons they had to offer.  As all who knew and loved Bob are fully aware, living each day to the fullest is a mindset and a way of life so in true “Bob” fashion, what better way to celebrate your 80th birthday than finding an elephant to ride.  

We are going to miss Bob, his love, his wisdom, his straight shooter attitude, but we also know that he has fought the good fight and now his time in the next life must begin.  Thank you, Bob, for captaining your ship with courage and unwavering determination and may the Lord keep you safe in His loving arms until we all meet again. 

Those left behind to cherish the memories of Bob include his beautiful bride of 64 years: Linda Hutchison Johnson, Dubuque, IA; his four adored children: Cynthia (Rene) Valenciano, Dubuque, IA, Sandra (Chuck) Erschen, Varna, IL, Julie Dvorak, Port Charlotte, FL, and Robert L. Johnson, Paradise Valley, Arizona; his seven grandchildren: Jessica (Jamie) Howard, Araceli (Mike) DeWitt, Travis (Nicole Schlichting) Erschen, Max Valenciano, Asa Valenciano, Robert Dvorak, and Lizzie Johnson; his seven great-grandchildren: Casey and Levi Rients, Talen Erschen, Islynn, Remington and Steele DeWitt, and Ella Cortez; his sister: Peggy Myers, Swisher, IA; his sister-in-law: Cathy Straight, Hanover, IL; his nieces and nephews: Barbara (Mike) Schulte, Sharon (Brad) Paulson, Diana Lynn (Scott) Morris, Jackie (Carl) Andrews, Dick (Cathy) Burmeister, Toby (Nancy) Straight, and Dani (Jason) Smallwood; along with numerous extended family, friends, and neighbors.

Bob was preceded in crossing by his parents; his brother and sister-in-law, James & Janice Johnson; his brother-in-law, John Myers; his granddaughter, Ashley Dvorak; his nephew, Timothy Johnson; his sister-in-law, Carol Burmeister; and his brothers-in-law, Jerry Burmeister and Larry Straight.

Bob’s family would like to thank the nurses and staff at Hospice of Dubuque, Dr. Bland, and the 5th floor doctors and nurses at Finley Hospital for their professional and compassionate care.


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