Harold Dean Johnson was born on September 30, 1922, the son of Aaron B. & Carolyn (Nystrom) Johnson. Harold was born on the family farm, south of Scandia, KS.
He attended District 88 country school for the first 8 years, and then attended Scandia High School. In high school, Harold participated in track and basketball, where he earned the nickname “Hoop” and would never say how or why he earned that name.
While in high school, a courtship began with Betty Larson. They were married February 3, 1945.
Harold attended Kansas State College of Agriculture and Applied Science, graduating in 1944 with a bachelor’s degree. Following college, he began work as the Clay County Kansas Extension Agent.
Harold was drafted into the Army Air Corps, mid-1945, and served in Fairbanks, Alaska and Edmonton, Canada, where he coded and decoded classified messages. It was only in the last few years that Harold was released from his classification, and could discuss his service in more detail. Harold was discharged in mid-1946, with the rank of Sergeant. Shortly after returning home to Scandia, Harold and Betty helped his parents during the flood of 1946.
Harold then accepted a position as the county agent for Wichita County Kansas in Leoti, and later took the county agent job in Scott County, because Scott County furnished an automobile. During this time, sons Allen (1948) and Neal (1951) were born. Harold grew tired of “attending all the 4-H meetings” and relocated the family to Belleville in 1955, settling on the farm west of Belleville. A third son, Randall, was born in 1956.
This move started him in the insurance business with Farm Bureau, followed by several partnerships, and then his own agency, which continued until 1987. He maintained an office in Bellville until approximately 2010, where he provided income tax services for over 100 clients per year until fully retiring. Harold loved playing cards, especially pitch and pinochle, for many years at morning coffee and lunch. He and Betty also enjoyed playing bridge with a group of close Belleville friends.
Harold was active in numerous organizations, including the Belleville Lions Club, the Chamber of Commerce, the Belleville Public Library Board, and the First United Methodist Church where he taught Sunday School for more than 40 years, before retiring in 2018. H.D. was instrumental in organizing the Rural Water District #2 in Republic County and served on the board for over 30 years. Harold was also a 76 year member of the Belleville Masonic Lodge, #129 A.F. & A.M. Harold served as the Past Master, Past District Deputy Grand Master, received the Outstanding Mason Award from the Grand Lodge of Kansas. He also recently received the 75 year Service Award from the Grand Lodge of Kansas.
In June of 2012, Harold and Betty moved from the farm into the Prairie Ridge Apartments in Belleville. Harold then moved into Country Place Senior Living in Belleville in 2015, after Betty’s passing.
The family would like to extend thanks and heartfelt appreciation to the many people and staff at Country Place Senior Living in Belleville, for their kind and loving care.
Harold passed away peacefully on December 2, 2020, at Country Place Senior Living, at the age of 98 years, 2 months and 2 days.
He is preceded in death by his parents, wife Betty in 2015, and his brother Glenn in 2020.
Harold is survived by his son, Allen Johnson and his wife Marcy of Belleville, and their children, Marcy Anne Johnson and her husband Chris, Julinne Moore and her husband Andy, Jennifer Lehman and her husband Marty, and Corey Johnson and his wife Maleah; son Neal Johnson and his wife Susan of Bartlesville, Oklahoma, and their children, Jason Christensen and his wife Kandis, Cody Christensen and his wife Joyce, Kyle Christensen and his wife Amber, and Erika Badzinski and her husband Gary; son Randall Johnson of Flowery Branch GA, and his children, Graham Johnson and Gabrielle Meister. He is also survived by twenty great-grandchildren.
Harold will lie in state at Tibbetts-Fischer Funeral Home in Belleville on Sunday, December 13th, 2020, from 12:00 pm – 6:00 pm, for public viewing and signing of a register book. The family will not be present.
Funeral Services will be held on Monday, December 14th, 2020, at 10:00 a.m., at the First United Methodist Church in Belleville, with the Reverend Sang Hak Lee officiating. Masonic Rites will be performed by the Belleville Masonic Lodge, #129, A.M. & A.F. Burial will follow at the Belleville City Cemetery.
Memorials are requested to the Republic Co. Historical Society & Museum, the First United Methodist Church of Belleville, or the Belleville Public Library, and may be sent in care of the funeral home.
Family and friends unable to attend the service are encouraged to express their condolences and leave memories on the Tribute Wall of Harold’s obituary page, on the funeral home website. Family and friends may watch Harold’s funeral service via the First United Methodist Church Facebook page on the day of the service.
Tibbetts-Fischer Funeral Home of Belleville assisted the Johnson family with these arrangements, www.tibbettsfischerfuneralhome.com