Nancy K. Johnson

Nancy K. Johnson

Nancy K. Johnson, age 79, passed away on Wednesday, May 16th, 2012.

Nancy was born in Coal City, Illinois on April 24th, 1934 to Marvin and Eloise Kausler. Raised as the only child of a Presbyterian minister and choir director, Nancy moved around the country many times as a young child when her father was a chaplain in the United States Army. The family settled in Ashland, Wisconsin when her father was discharged, where she attended high school.

Nancy went on in life to attend Carroll College in Waukesha, Wisconsin, graduating with degrees in Spanish and English. She then attended McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago, Illinois and received a Master’s Degree in Theology. While attending McCormick, she met John Johnson, who would become her husband. While they lived in Chicago, she became a Social Worker in the Spanish projects on the South side of Chicago. Her husband was called to ministry in Zanesville, Ohio, where they also opened a neighborhood center for disadvantaged youth. While in Zanesville, they celebrated the birth of their son Eric in 1967. The call of ministry then took them to Portsmouth, Ohio. While in Portsmouth, they celebrated the birth of their daughter, Anne, in 1969. They then moved to Columbus, Ohio in 1972 for John to serve as a minister of a church there.

In addition to serving their church, Nancy served her community working in a group home for handicapped adult women who were struggling to find their place in the world. In 1976, when her husband suffered a major heart attack, Nancy had the strength to go back to college and received a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting. The call of ministry then took them to Madison in 1983.

Nancy took a job as an accountant for a trade show company, where she was employed for many years before suffering a massive stroke in 1996. She accepted her fate with grace and dignity. Even though she required 24 hour care, she never complained and still worried about her kids and others more than herself. Another massive stroke in 2008 greatly compromised her ability to communicate and eat, but she was still strong and accepting of her situation. Nancy was an excellent example to everyone around her of selflessness, incredible intelligence, grace, dignity, humility, strength and beauty within.

She is survived by her son, Eric Johnson of Madison; her daughter, Anne Bitton of Madison; her favorite niece, Kimberly Melcher of Long Branch, New Jersey; brother-in-law, George (Polly) Johnson of Long Beach, California; brother-in-law, Richard Johnson of Garden Grove, California; many nieces, a nephew, and many friends.

She was preceded in death by her father, Marvin Kausler; her mother, Eloise Kausler; her husband, John Johnson; and most of her cousins and friends. Eric and Anne would like to say a huge thank you to Belmont Nursing and Rehab for the excellent care she received there for the last 15 years of her life, in particular her nurse, Linda, and her CAN, Terry.

Memorial services will be held at Belmont Nursing and Rehab, 110 Belmont Road, Madison, Wisconsin on Saturday, May 26th, 2012 at 2p.m. In lieu of flowers, A memorial fund has been set up for the family and donations can be sent to 1606 Wendy Lane, Madison, Wisconsin 53716.