Keith Johnson Feb. 18, 1930 - ,
BLUE EYE, MO. - Keith was born February 18 1930 on the family farm which adjoined the town of Redfield in Spink County, South Dakota to Aaron Luther Johnson and Hazel Ethel (Carlson) Johnson their only child. He attended Redfield grade school and high school in 1948 he went to college for two years at Northern State Teachers College in Aberdeen South Dakota and then took a twelve month Medical Technology internship at Presentation College, St. Luke's Hospital in Aberdeen, leading to certification as a registered Medical Technologist, MT (ASCP). On October 28th 1951 he married Virginia Carol Barnes near Tulare South Dakota. December 28th 1951 he was drafted into the army. Following infantry basic training at Camp Brenkenridge Kentucky, he was sent to camp Pickett Blackstone, Virginia for medical basic training. Virginia joined him there during a beautiful spring day in 1952. After a leave of he was sent to Korea via Camp Stoneman, Oakland California. On a ship US Black to Yokohoma, Japan and on the U.S. Marine Adder to Inchon, Korea and then onto the 171st Evacuation / station Hospital, Taejon Korea., arriving in July 1952. After several months of guard duty with the hospital guard duty with the hospital guard unit he was assigned to the 171st laboratory where he gained valuable experience in disease not common to the Midwest States, especially in the specialty of parasitology. This was because of the 171st mission was caring for the Korean Service Corp. which was made up of Korean men serving as laborers for the Republic of Korea Army, not being fit to serve the Army.. During his tour in Korea he was privileged to take two R & R's to Japan and one to Tokyo and the other to the southern island of Kyusha. Returning to South Dakota after being discharged from service, Keith attended South Dakota State in Brookings SD, he graduated with a B.S. in Medical Technology in 1955. Keith and Virginia's first son, Steven Keith, was born in Brookings in 1959. They moved to Freeport, Illinois in 1955 where he worked at Freeport Clinic becoming the chief technologist in 1956. Their second child Gregory Alan was born in Freeport in 1956. Their second child Dawn Ann was born there also in 1959. They moved to Willmar, MN in 1960 where Keith took the position of Chief Technologist at Rice Memorial Hospital where he worked until retirement in 1992. He joined the Willmar Elks Lodge # 952 in 1966 and s the Exalted Ruler 1976-77 the lodge year during which the Willmar Elks built a new lodge. Enjoying vacations to the Ozarks and Branson , Mo. Keith and Virginia decided to move there in the late 1993 and settled in Reeds Springs, MO. Virginia passed away in May, 2000. Keith married Frankie Faye Whitener in December 2001 and they resided in Hollister, MO. Until they moved to Blue Eye, MO (Twin Island) in 2002.
He is preceded in death by Virginia his first wife, parents and grandparents, and a stepson Don. He is survived by his wife, Frankie, his children Steve & Lynne, Greg & Kim, Dawn & Bryan. Grandson Colton Alan Johnson. Step children Ron & Darnell and step grandchildren Vance Johnson and 6 other step grandchildren, 6 step great grandchildren. And several cousins.
Keith has written his own obituary.