Ronald Eugene Johnson, of Litchfield, age 75, died Friday, June 9, 2017, at the Meeker Manor Rehabilitation Center in Litchfield. Funeral service will be held at 10:30 AM on Wednesday, June 14, 2017, at Zion Lutheran Church in Litchfield. Visitation will be on Tuesday, June 13th from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM at the Zion Lutheran Church and one hour prior to the service at the church. Interment will be in the Lake Ripley Cemetery, Litchfield, MN.
Ronald "Ron" Eugene Johnson was born on July 29, 1941 in Omaha, Nebraska the son of John and Esther (Dyer) Johnson. He was baptized on December 28, 1941 and confirmed in his faith on April 3, 1955 at Pella Lutheran Church, Omaha. He attended school in Omaha, graduating from Benson High in 1959. In May, 1963 he graduated from the University of Nebraska at Omaha where he earned a B.S. degree. In 1977, while married and raising a family, he graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a Masters Degree in Public Administration.
On September 1, 1963, Ron married his high school sweetheart, Sharon Kay Steinbach. He worked for the U.S. Public Health Service for ten years and during that time the family lived in seven different locations and enjoying the promotions along the way. In Pittsburgh, he began a new career path in health and hospital administration eventually serving two hospitals as Chief Executive Officer over a twenty year period. His last position was with Meeker County Memorial Hospital.
The Litchfield community honored Ron as its Business Person of the Year in 1991. His accomplishments were in leading the hospital in a successful turnaround through major renovations in the facility, making important service program changes and maintaining sound financial management. He served the Litchfield Kiwanis Club as its President in 1993-1994 and was for several years its membership chairman. Following his early retirement from hospital administration in 2002, he was appointed to the Meeker County Housing and Redevelopment Authority where he worked hard to bring about improvements in the availability of affordable, low income housing in the County. Ron also worked in his retirement years for the Litchfield Golf Club and for Johnson-Hagglund Funeral Home as a funeral assistant. He enjoyed undertaking many home improvement projects using carpentry skills he learned while going to college. Ron loved traveling with his wife and occasionally enjoyed a game of golf with family or friends.
Ron was a member of Zion Lutheran Church where he sang in the choir, sang solos when asked, chaired the Lay Ministry Board and was particularly proud of his work with the church Property Board and overseeing the church renovation in 2005. Memorials to the Zion Lutheran Building fund are preferred.
He leaves behind his loving wife Sharon; son Eric (Alisa) Johnson of Dassel; grandson Matthew; granddaughters Alayna, and Ella; sister Janet (Clifford) Sorensen of Lincoln, Nebraska; brother Reverend David (Valerie) Johnson of Jackson, Missouri; nieces, nephews, other relatives and close friends. He was preceded in death by his son Jeffrey and his parents.