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David  Johnson
  • Michigan DECA

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“Dear Family,Blessings to you all, as you face the loss of David. I have fond memories of his involvement in Gull Lake High School's Performing Arts...Read More »
1 of 11 | Posted by: Robin Nott - Augusta, MI

“I met Dave, Nancy and Daver when I started dating my husband Pat, who sailed 210's with Dave on Gull Lake. I have great memories of my weekend trips...Read More »
2 of 11 | Posted by: Pat and Kelly Boyle - Friend

“I worked with Dave at Ingham Intermediate. He was great with his students and we had a lot of fun working together! He was a great Teacher and...Read More »
3 of 11 | Posted by: Deb Fusbto - Eaton Rapids, MI

“Dear Daver , Melinda, and family,My condolences on the death of your Dad. I so enjoyed knowing Dave and competing with him. He will be fondly...Read More »
4 of 11 | Posted by: William Uggen - richland, MI

“Daver and Melinda, We will always remember Dave's love for Nancy and his love for his family. Dave and I started together teaching at the Van Buren...Read More »
5 of 11 | Posted by: Pete Vergot - Tallahassee, FL

“Fave was such an amazing man and I loved his stories!! Became closer to him thru Bible study at the Richland Presbyterian church. Enjoyed hanging out...Read More »
6 of 11 | Posted by: Zip Fiordalis - Hilliard, OH

“Dave was wonderful to work with. He was supportive to students and fellow staff members, at school....and passionate about sharing his knowledge of...Read More »
7 of 11 | Posted by: Julie MacKenzie - Coworker

“Dave was a kind and patient man, who held the operations of the Gull Lake Yacht Club together each week, during the racing schedule. He always was...Read More »
8 of 11 | Posted by: William Goodrich - RICHLAND, MI

“I loved racing 210's against him and his son. A true gentleman competitor. I even lent him sails one year! ”
9 of 11 | Posted by: Tom Lemaire - Newport, MA

“Dad was always the helper. The man behind the guy on stage; the one who did what was needed, without the fanfare or the spotlight. He said, the...Read More »
10 of 11 | Posted by: Daver Johnson - Richland, MI

“Always of good humor and never lacking when help was needed at GLYC. Dave will be sorely missed by all who knew him. We are all better for that...Read More »
11 of 11 | Posted by: Steven & Andrea Parker - Delton, MI

Army Emblem

David Johnson, age 78, of Richland Michigan died peacefully with family by his side, on Tuesday evening, December 29, 2020. Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota on October 4, 1942, David (Dave) Johnson was the son of Reuben C. Johnson and Anita Sheridan. In his high school years, he liked to play sports and drive cars, always having an interest in automobiles and motorcycles. After joining the Army in 1961, he had higher education sights set on Westpoint. But a failed eye exam forced his dreams to shift to another calling, as an educator.

After his Masters in Education at The Ohio State University, Dave took to soft pitch AAA Baseball, becoming a member of a travel club. He made lifelong friendships while teaching vocational education and met Nancy F. Johnston of Kalamazoo. They married on Valentines Day, 1979 and had one son, David Curtis Johnson Jr. later that summer. Dave's beloved wife Nancy preceded him in death October 2014.

A profound competitor, he enjoyed cards, golf, billiards, and grew into his passion for sailing that he continued for the remainder of his life. He was a teacher and administrator for over 35 years, serving Van Buren, Gull Lake and Ingham Intermediate Schools in Mason. He was a DECA (Marketing) Leader, a valued teacher's union representative and board member, a member of the Gull Lake Country Club/Yacht Club, board member and a lifetime achievement recipient of the International 210 Class.

In his later years in life, he loved sailing every chance he could, always asking youthful new sailors to come and learn from "Big Dave". He was always proud of family ties to his step- daughter, Melinda Titus, and his son Daver but revelled in his patriarchal role as "Poppa" to his grandchildren; Jenni Landers, Jimmy Chadwick, Katie Chadwick, Nolan Johnson and Mason Johnson.

Dave is survived by his children; Melinda Titus (Jim Chadwick), David C. Johnson, Jr. (Katie Johnson, MD), sister-in-law Jan Lee, his grandchildren, numerous nieces and nephews and several close friends.

A public visitation will be available at Farley Estes Dowdle Funeral Home & Cremation Care, Richland Chapel, on Wednesday, January 6th, 2021 from 10:00 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. COVID-19 safety precautions will be followed. Private services for the family will proceed at 12:00 p.m.; a livestream of the service can be viewed at the following link: Interment will take place at Fort Custer National Cemetery in Augusta, MI. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to Michigan DECA or First Presbyterian Church, Richland. A celebration of his life will happen later this spring/summer. Personal messages for the family may be placed at

Upcoming Funeral Services
Interment with Full Military Honors

Fort Custer National Cemetery

15501 Dickman Rd. Augusta, MI 49012
(269) 731-4164