Celebrating the life of Rodney M. Johnson
Be the first to share your favorite memory, photo or story of Rodney . This memorial page is dedicated for family, friends and future generations to celebrate the life of their loved one.
We ask on behalf of the family that you keep your comments uplifting and appropriate to help all who come here to find comfort and healing.
Rod was born June 15, 1928, in Minneapolis, MN, to William and Hilda Johnson. He graduated from Wayzata High School in 1946 and studied carpentry at Dunwoody Industrial Institute before marrying his high school sweetheart, Nancy Montgomery, on June 4, 1949. During the Korean War, he served as a Staff Sergeant and airplane mechanic in the Minnesota National Guard. In 1953, they moved to Chicago and studied Missions at Moody Bible Institute. They then moved to Colorado, where he was ordained by the Conservative Baptist Church in 1959. Following the call of the Lord, he, Nancy, and their oldest son moved to Ethiopia, where they served nine years with SIM International and welcomed a daughter and two more sons. Upon returning from Ethiopia, they settled in Thief River Falls, MN, where he became active in the Thief River Falls Evangelical Covenant Church and earned his Bachelor’s in Industrial Education from the University of Minnesota. He taught post-high school building trades, established a kitchen cabinet shop, and mentored young men from the nearby Miracle House. After earning his M.S. from Bemidji State University, he completed a certificate in elementary education and taught second grade at Northrop Elementary School. Upon retirement, Rod & Nancy returned to Africa for two years, teaching in Mozambique and Ethiopia. In 1998, they moved to Davey, NE, where they became founding members of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Lincoln, and Rod continued his craftsmanship in fine woodworking and cabinetry. In 2011, he and Nancy moved to Prophetstown, IL, and joined the fellowship of Harvest Time Bible Church.
After years memorizing the Word and proclaiming Christ, Rod was carried home to Jesus on October 25th after complications of Parkinson’s disease. He was preceded in death by his parents and older brother, Will, and sister-in-law, Jackie, and he is survived by his beloved wife, Nancy, with whom he cherished 70 years of marriage. He is celebrated by four children: Stephen Johnson of Adolphus, KY; Holly (Daniel) Paul of Prophetstown, IL; Daniel (Monika) Johnson of Waxhaw, NC; David (Giulia) Johnson of Nice, France; twelve grandchildren: Heidi (Kyle) Burroughs; Katie, Nathan, Rachel, Sarah, Joshua (Grace), and Elisabeth Paul; Katja, Juliana, and Annelie Johnson; Luca and Emma Johnson; and three great-grandchildren: Jack, Alaina, and Ryker Burroughs. A memorial service will be held on Saturday, November 2nd, at 2:00 P.M. at Harvest Time Bible Church in Rock Falls, IL. Memorials may be directed to SIM’s radio ministry in Ethiopia: Ethiopian Media Ministry, Project ID: 083280-091; or Harvest Time Bible Church in Rock Falls, IL.
To plant a tree in memory of Rodney M. Johnson, visit the Tribute Store.
1802 Dixon Road
Rock Falls, IL 61071