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Johnny Ray Johnson, 61, of Grand Rivers died Thursday morning , December 13th, at his home from the result of a illness he had battled for several years.
Johnny affectionally known as “Dad, Uncle Johnny, Judo, JR, Mr. Johnny, and Johnny R” was dedicated to the life of a farmer for over 45 years. He began his career with his father as they continued the 4-generation farm operation that was started by his great grandfather. They row cropped and specialized in hogs, cattle , horses and sheep. After the death of his father he continued the legacy of Johnson farms. Johnny also operated a toy farm business named “Johnny’s Toys” for 30 plus years in which he traveled to several states to trade shows, fairs,etc..
Johnny is survived by his wife of 28 years Tonya Styers Johnson and his two children Gracen Elizabeth Johnson and Evan Charley Johnson all of Grand Rivers. A young man who had worked beside him for several years, that he considered as a son, Jason Oates of Grand Rivers. Cousins Terry Clark of Paducah, Kaye Clark Guess of Smithland, and Denise Moser Funderburk of St. Peters, MO.. Mother-in-law Cathy Barker and Father-in-law Thomas Styers, both of Paducah. Brother-in-laws Todd Styers and John Bowman of Paducah. Sister-in-law Christy Bowman Gill of Paducah. Nephews Jeremy Styers, Jacob Styers, and Travis Gill , all of Paducah. Niece Kinsley Bowman of Paducah. A long time friend who stuck with him through thick and thin and considered as his brother, Shannon Ellington of Boaz. Three honored nieces Phlecia Ellington Sullivan of Nashville, TN., Whitney Ellington Kilcoyne of Mayfield, , and Tiffani Ellington Harpole of Lexington. A honored nephew Hunter Ellington of Mayfield. Godsons Brandon Funderburk and Logan Funderburk of St. Peters, MO..
He was preceded in death by his parents, James “Charley” Johnson and Wanda “Sue” Clark Johnson;
His grandparents J.C. and Ida Robertson Pendergrast formally of Iuka ; and Elgin Logan and Marie Champion Clark formally of Burna.
Johnny was very proud to live in the Iuka community and the same road his entire life. He was raised in the Iuka Baptist Church and for years was involved at the Hardmoney Baptist Church of Boaz. He loved to sing old southern gospel in choir, ensembles, and often would sit around and sing to his children. He had a deep strong voice and often was chosen to participate in Narration parts. He often volunteered in community activities by serving on Boards, committees, Judging events, and visiting Children hospitals to deliver farm toys. Served as Magistrate of Iuka Cemetary for years and volunteerly mowed and lovingly cared for it. He was a member and officer for many years at the Iuka Woodman of the World, which was a family tradition . Served as President of Livingston County Farm Bureau. Member of Regional and National Toy Farm Clubs. A 1975 Graduate of Livingston County High School . Active through his school years in Future Farmers of America and Livingston County 4-H organization. He was very dedicated to his friends and often with only a moments notice would jump in the truck to assist them with a problem and many times assisted other farmers with their crops when needed.
Friends may visit the family on Saturday, December 22nd from 10:00am till 1:00pm at Iuka Baptist Church of Grand Rivers.
Memorial service will be at 1:00pm with the Rev. Chad Lamb officiating. Inurnment will follow at Iuka Cemetary.
Honorary Pall Bearers are Evan Johnson of Grand Rivers; Jason Oates of Grand Rivers; Shannon Ellington of Boaz; Kenny Harper of Paducah; Neal Lindsey of Paducah; Wesley Hodges of Bertrand, Mo.; Marty Offutt of Mayfield; Jerry Robertson of Grand Rivers; Mark Long of Tilene; and Jody Keyes of Grand Rivers.
Online condolences may be left at www.smithfc.com
Smith Funeral Chapel is in charge of arrangements.