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Marlene Johnson

Marlene Johnson

Jul 31, 1932 - Feb 16, 2014
Funeral services for Marlene Johnson, 81, will be held 3:00 p.m., Thursday, February 20, 2014 at Davis Funeral Home with Pastor Ian McFarland of the Cornerstone Community Church officiating. Interment will follow at Mountain View Cemetery. A visitation will be held Thursday, 2:00 p.m. until service time.

Marlene Johnson passed away in the early morning of February 16th after a graceful, inspiring and determined battle with a variety of health issues. She was surrounded by her 4 children who will miss her terribly, but are so grateful for the opportunity to have had her in their lives.

Marlene was born to Frank and Hazel Van Dusen in Hay Springs, NE on July 31, 1932. She lived in various areas of Nebraska in her childhood.

On May 31, 1952, she married her soul mate Dean Johnson in Alliance, NE. They had four children, Larry, Don, Kay and Karen in Alliance and moved to Riverton, WY in 1961 where she lived happily the rest of her life.

Marlene worked hard to provide for all the family’s needs while living on a frugal budget; including making clothes for the girls out of hand-me-downs from the boys, making homemade bread, canning, scrimping out of each month’s paycheck in order to take the family on their annual trip to Nebraska each summer.

Marlene was fortunate to be a stay-at-home mom while the kids were young and went in to the workplace when the youngest were in 2nd grade. Marlene worked for Fremont County School District #25 from early 1970’s until May 1998. She was the secretary at Jackson Elementary for many, many years and absolutely loved that job and missed “her kids” when she retired. The family remembers that anytime they were with Marlene out and about, kids were excitedly calling out “Mrs. Johnson” and rushing to give her a hug and tell her about their latest adventures.

Marlene was fiercely independent. She was a voracious reader and crossword puzzle solver and in recent months had adapted to listening to books on CD to fulfill this interest. Marlene was always a good sport when it came to family activities; anything from playing baseball, ice-skating, and picnics in Sinks Canyon. She attended all of the kid’s activities and was their greatest fan!

Marlene loved each of her kids with a unique and unconditional love.

She is survived children, Larry of Casper, Don and wife Dee of Lander, Kay and Brett Watson, Karen and Paul Wardner all of Riverton; her brother, David and wife Ellie of Norfolk, NE; her sister, Carol Simpson of Omaha, NE; her grandchildren, Jennifer and Scott Watson, Angela Wood, Crystal Cabada, Andy and Carl Johnson, Max Wardner, and Nicole Robertson; and her eight great-grandchildren, Jordan, Chrissy, Katie, Meagan and Tatum Cabada, Paige Wood, Layla and Gracen Robertson.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Dean in 1997; her father and mother, Frank and Hazel Van Dusen; her brother, Edwin Van Dusen; and multiple aunts, uncles and cousins.

Memorials may be made to Help for Health in care of Davis Funeral Home, 2203 West Main Street, Riverton, WY 82501. On-line condolences for the family may be made at

Services are under the direction of Davis Funeral Home.