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St. George, Utah – Leland Dewey Johnson, age 86, passed away December 28, 2011. He was born October 5, 1925, in Salt Lake City, Utah, to Edmund Ludwig Johnson and Edith Victoria Omer. He grew up in the Holiday area until leaving for active duty in the military.
On June 21, 1948, Leland married his love, Marion Lucille Rushton in the Logan L.D.S. Temple, Logan, Utah. Lee was a man without guile and honest and exact in all his dealings. He loved everyone. Recently, one of his attending physicians said, “of all the patients I have treated, no one is kinder or more loving than your Dad”. Dad’s legacy is one of kindness and love towards all mankind. Everyone and every creature was his friend and they felt his genuine love and concern.
Dad was a veteran of WWII, serving 37 months in the South Pacific and North Atlantic Theaters of War. He was proud of his service to his country. While serving in the Merchant Marine’s he boxed and became known as “Speedy Red Johnson” he was the champion of his weight division. He also boxed in his youth winning all his fights in what was known as the, “Smokeless Smokers” at the Wilford Ward, SLC, UT.
He attended Granite High School and the University of Utah where he loved to play his trumpet in the marching and Jazz bands. He was a graduate to the University of Utah executive business program and received his Certified Purchasing Manager Degree.
Dad was a devout member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He served in numerous positions but loved most, serving as a missionary on two stake missions, the last one with mom.
Lee is survived by a son, Stephen L. (Collette) Johnson of Mesa, AZ; daughter, Marilee MacPherson of St. George, UT; 8 grandchildren and 22 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his wife, Marion Rushton Johnson; parents; sisters; brother; son-in-law, Bradford Earl MacPherson; and grandson, Ryan Stephen MacPherson.
Funeral services will be held Tuesday, January 3, 2012, at 3:00 p.m. at the Spilsbury Mortuary Chapel, 110 S. Bluff St., St. George. Visitation will be Tuesday, from 1:30-2:30 p.m. prior to services at the Mortuary. Interment will take place in the Tonaquint Cemetery.