Helen Patricia Johnson

With great sadness, we note the passing of Pat Johnson on May 23, 2012, loved by so many and friend to all.
Pat was one of the original members of the support group organized by Judy Dragiewicz in 1989 and Pat and her husband Chuck continued to attend meetings until Pat’s health conditions declined. Her amazing demeanor and spirit affected many and were an inspiration to whoever she touched and how very well her name description fit her: “GENTLE SPIRIT, RADIANT SMILE”! Pat’s smile lit up a room, even though she might have been in pain, a fact she hid from others, except Chuck! Pat had no greater champions than her marriage partner of 60 yrs., Charles Lindberg Johnson, and their five children and grandchildren, plus numerous friends.
Pat fulfilled so many duties in life and none more fully than that of wife, mother, friend, and military “mom and dad” in Chuck’s absence while he was on a tour of duty that the family could not be with. Pat also held the position of foods service manager of a church school cafeteria, one which she fully enjoyed, and church participation gave her life full balance.
In 1992, after severe pain in her arm, Pat was diagnosed with syringomyelia and unfortunately, the surgery did not improve her symptoms. In 1993, after a MRI diagnosis of Chiari, decompression was performed but damage had already progressed. She also developed heart valve problems and retired from her position, moving to Payson where she and Chuck remained until their move to the Mesa area.
The AZ Syringo & Chiari Support Group sponsored a national fundraiser, The Conquer Chiari, 1st.Walk Across America in 2008 and the entire Johnson “clan’ turned out to support Pat’s fight to raise awareness and fund research to find a cure for her rare disorders. It was an emotional day for Pat and her family and the last Walk that Pat was able to participate in as a member although they continued to attend meetings whenever possible.
Many of us were honored to attend a Celebration of Life Service on May 31st. at Creighton United Methodist Church, 4900 E. Thomas Road, Phoenix. At a luncheon following the service, we were introduced to Pat’s family and were able to speak with long-time friends. An amazing lady, with unbelievable grace- HELEN PATRICIA JOHNSON

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