Robert Merle Johnson

Robert “Bob” Johnson died Thursday, Aug. 5, in Hospice at Twin Ports VA Facility in Superior, WI, surrounded by his wife, family, & friends.  He was born in Duluth, MN, on March 30, 1931, to Rudolph & Mildred (Selden) Johnson.  Bob graduated from Sacred Heart Cathedral High School, class of 1949.  He joined “B” Company Marines while in high school, & attended Marine summer camps in 1948 & 1949. The “B” Company Marines were activated Aug. 1, 1950, due to the Korean War. Bob was a decorated Marine, having served with the 1st Marine Division. He was wounded in the Chosin Reservoir  Campaign, hospitalized in Japan, & medically discharged in March 1952.  While home on leave in 1951, he married Virginia Harkness on April 28. In 1953, he attended UMD, followed by Graduate School at MacMurray College in Jacksonville, IL. He graduated & completed his Internship as a School Psychologist in Moline & Rock Island schools in IL. For the next 6 years, he traveled with Virginia & 6 children from Illinois up to the Temperance River & surrounding area on summer breaks, where they rough-camped & he fished. Bob was a self-taught fly fisherman, who tied his own flies. He was a gentleman of many interests, & an avid reader, with a keen mind. His sense of humor was ever present. His baby son, Erik, once described him as a trout fisherman & a psychologist, saying it all. The family moved back to Duluth in 1968, & eventually settled in their home on Stenman Rd. in Esko, where they’ve lived for 51 years. He worked as school psychologist, a clinical psychologist, & a therapist,  both in Duluth & Cloquet, until his retirement in 1993. He will be remembered by all who knew him for his love of family & knowledge of whatever the topic of conversation was. He was preceded in death by his parents, a brother Loren “Larry” Johnson, sons Robert “Bob” & Paul, & foster son Jeffrey Northrup. He is survived by, & will be greatly missed by, Virginia, his wife of 70 years, daughters Constance (Mark) Anderson, Duluth, MN, Karen (Steven) Senenfelder, Esko, MN,  Kathryn (John) Hyde, Esko, MN, & a son, Erik (Charlene Falkowski), Clark, N.J., 11 Grandchildren, & 11 Greats. A celebration of his life will be held on Sept. 26, from 1 to 5 p.m. at the Buffalo House, in their Buffalo Junction building, 2590 Guss Rd., Duluth, MN 55810. Please bring stories to tell, fish tales, & also shenanigans to share. For the safety of yourself & others, please wear a mask.


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