Lois Jean Johnson was born April 21, 1927 to Henry E. and Alvina Nelson in LaGrande Township of Douglas County. She was baptized as an infant and confirmed at Svea Lutheran Church in Alexandria. Lois was a dedicated lifetime member of Calvary (Svea) Lutheran Church. A generation learned their Bible Stories from her flannelgraphs, as she was the leader of the Sunday School and Bible School for young children. She actively supported her sister’s missionary endeavors in Africa during the 50’s and 60’s. She was well known for her Swedish rice pudding and meatballs for church suppers. Upon retirement she was active in Golden Glowers Bible Study Group, the funeral committee, and Calvary’s prayer chain.
In Lois’ youth, she was involved in 4H. She attended grade school in District 47 Rural School in La Grande and graduated from Central High School in 1945. Lois enrolled at St. Cloud State Teachers College. Due to the MN teacher shortage from the war, following a 12 month curriculum, she taught rural school in District 88. Upon completing her degree at St. Cloud State she taught 7th & 8th Grade in the Brandon School District until 1958. She began tutoring in 1965 for the Alexandria School District, continuing for the next 27 years. Following Special education off-site coursework she taught hearing and sight impaired students, homebound, and special needs students. A dedicated teacher, Lois taught a total of 40 years.
On July 28, 1950 Lois was united in marriage to Floyd E. Johnson at Svea (Calvary) Lutheran Church. They built their home on Lake Brophy and their first daughter, Cheryl, was born in 1959. Their second daughter Julie was born in 1969 and the family has enjoyed their lake place ever since.
Lois’ love for Jesus shone through her servant heart, cheerful giving, hospitality, and caring hands. Above all she valued Christ-like unity, forgiveness, and peace. Everyone knew her grandchildren brought her the greatest joy. Many trips out East were made to visit grandsons. At her home, she looked forward to her younger grandchildren coming off of the bus each day, where her baking not only warmed her kitchen but also everyone’s hearts.
Lois is preceded in death by her loving husband Floyd, her parents, brother Myron Nelson and brother-in-law Charles Jacobson. She thoroughly enjoyed the gift of 30 dear cousins who grew up with her.
She will be dearly missed by her daughters Cheryl (James) Mathesz of Northampton, PA and Julie (Daniel) Miller of Alexandria; grandchildren: Michael and James (Jamie) Mathesz, JeAnna, Bethany, Aleah, Jaelyn and Jakin Miller; great grandson Jeremy Mathesz and sister Eileen Nelson Jacobson.
A public visitation will be held on Friday, March 5 at Andersons’ Funeral Home from 4-7 p.m. A private family service will be held at 11 AM on Saturday, March 6, 2021 at Calvary Lutheran with Rev. Hans Dahl and Rev. Wayne Erickson officiating. Becky Worley is the organist and Brad Lambrecht is the soloist. The service will be live-streamed and recorded for family and friends to view. Interment in Evergreen Cemetery. Casket Bearers are Michael Mathesz, Jamie Mathesz, Brandon Ruhr, Mark Ziebarth, Scott Soderholm , John Hedin, Leon Hoppe and Rodney Floding. Honorary casket bearers: JeAnna Miller, Bethany Miller, Aleah Miller, Jaelyn Miller, Jakin Miller, Ardene Weberg, Susan Ruhr.