Bernice (Weigert) Johnson spent the past 10 years of her life living in Florida with her daughter, Kay Johnson Heller. Heller said she enjoyed her time there where she found friends to play cards with and was independent, taking the bus to visit the mall regularly.
Johnson was born in Chicago and was an orphan who was adopted at about 18 months of age. She attended grade school in Chicago and graduated from Bowen High School in 1937. Shortly after, she married Kenneth Johnson and the couple settled in Lansing where she lived for 60 years.
“She was a great mother,” said Heller. “She was always there to help at school if needed. She was the cookie and cupcake baker. She was a co-leader for Girl Scouts and then a leader.”
Her husband owned Lansing Realty and Johnson helped out in the office when she was needed, but Heller said that mostly she spent her time with her kids. A hobby she developed later was canvas needlework. “We all have tons of Kleenex boxes and things she’d made over the years,” said Heller.
Heller said her mother was always available and happy to babysit for her and spent a lot of time with all five of her grandchildren as well as three great-grandchildren.
Johnson’s most recent pastime was playing canasta regularly with a group.
“She lived to be 94 and lived a long life and died peacefully and that was the most important thing to me,” Heller said. The valuable advice that she recalls receiving from her mother is “always to be honest and straightforward.”
Johnson was preceded in death by husband, a son also named Kenneth and a grandson, Joel Johnson.