Warren Albert Johnson,
passed away peacefully, surrounded by the love of his family, on August 18th, at Nemasket Healthcare Facility in Middleboro, MA, where he had resided for the past month. He was born September 27, 1923 in Boston MA, son of Esther Anderson and Gustav Johnson.
Warren is survived by his wife, Shirley C. Johnson and their three daughters, Karen Baranowski and her husband Peter of Nashua, NH, Kristine Menzie and her husband John of Marco Island, FL, and Cynthia Warren and her husband Glenn of Norton, MA, with whom he resided until moving to a nursing care facility in 2009.
Warren graduated from Mechanics Art High School in 1941 and as a standout football player, received a full scholarship to Springfield College where he would have gone on to become a professional football coach. Warren's plans were sidelined when he was drafted into the Army during WWII, so to fulfill his passion for the ocean, he joined the United States Coast Guard and served proudly from 1942-1946. His travels took him to the Northern and Southern Atlantic oceans, the Mediterranean and African waters and to the Pacific; Philippines/Japan/Korea, traveling through the Panama Canal at least once. He served a year on a Destroyer Escort and three years on a Troop Transport and was a gunner aboard the USS Gordon. He proudly served his country during his time in the Coast Guard.
Warren met the love of his life, Shirley Helene Chase at a sorority dance in Boston where he had to 'rescue her from some obnoxious flyboys' and after a whirlwind courtship, married on June 29th, 1946 in Waterville, ME on a blistering 110 degree day! They most recently celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary. The Johnson's moved to Norwood, MA in 1949 where they lived for 35 years and raised their three daughters. Upon his wife's retirement from the Norwood school system, they moved and lived in New Ipswich, NH from 1984 until 2005, at which time they moved to Norton, where Warren lived until his family could no longer care for him at home.
Warren was a member of the Heat and Frost Insulation Union, Local 6, Boston, MA from 1941-1976. He joined the AF & AM Masonic Lodge-Orient Lodge in Norwood MA in 1952, where he was a member for 59 years, and for a time, he served as a Shriner. Warren was most recently a member of the Chartley United Methodist Church in Norton but for the greater part of his life, was an active member of the Grace Episcopal Church in Norwood, MA.
Warren shared a great love of the water and outdoors, traveling across the country and Canada, camping with his wife Shirley up until he was 80 years old. They went on several cruises and traveled to Norway on one of their many trips. He loved nature and wildlife and brought his girls up teaching them about the outdoors; camping, swimming, sailing, fishing, and canoeing, to name but a few. Music also played a part in the joys of his life, with a wonderful singing voice and a love of the old hymns and songs. He also loved his animals, surrounding himself with many dogs and cats over the years.
Warren was a loving husband and father, with a wonderful sense of humor that could light up a room. He was the kind of man who would give you the shirt off his back and he was always there if you needed help. He was generous with his time and his love of his children, of whom he was most proud. Warren was a hulk of a Swede with a teddy bear soul, a gentle giant of a man with a heart of gold. He will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him.
In addition to his family, Warren is survived by his grand-daughter Kendra Menzie and her fiance, Galen Karriker, Lyn Baranowski and grand-son David Baranowski and his wife Alison, and one great grand-daughter, Ellen Baranowski. He is also survived by his three sisters, Doris Hastie, Phyllis O'Hara and Shirley Wiedemann and her husband Fred, who was his Best Man in 1946. He is pre-deceased by his brother Alden, who lost his life in the service of his country during WWII. Their reunion in Heaven will be one for the ages as Warren missed him so very, very much. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews whom he loved as well. And lastly, Warren leaves behind many friends and care-givers, that showed him so much love and we thank them all for their wonderful support and tenderness over the years.
Services for Warren will be held at the Bolea-Amici Funeral Home, 115 North Main Street, Mansfield, MA 02048 on Saturday, August 27th. Viewing hours will be from 10:00am to 11:30am, followed by a brief service at the funeral home. Everyone is cordially invited to stay.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Warren's name to Nine Lives of Norton, PO Box 548, Norton MA 02766.
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115 North Main Street
Mansfield, MA 02048