Richard E. "Dick" Johnson, 83Muncie - Richard E. "Dick" Johnson, 83, retired principal of Wes-Del High School, Gaston, IN, passed away Tuesday, March 28, 2017, at IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital following complications from his courageous battle with cancer. Dick was born on August 19, 1933, in Muncie to the late William "Bill" and Nina (Bridget) Johnson. He graduated from Harrison Township High School in 1951 and went on to earn his master's of education and administration from Ball State University. Dick was a United States Marine, serving as a tank commander during the
. After returning from the war he married his hometown sweetheart, Carole Janney on August 14, 1955. Dick first taught science at Gaston High School, then later served as principal at Harrison Township High School and Gaston High School before being named as the first principal of Wes-Del High School. Dick retired as principal in 1994. One year later, the gymnasium at Wes-Del High School was named "Richard E. Johnson Gymnasium" to honor his dedicated service as principal to thousands of students and faculty and staff members throughout more than 30 years. Dick was a member of the Gaston Lions Club for 56 years where he was in charge of the famous BBQ Chicken, fair queens, and the Kid's Day for several years. He was also a member and trustee at Prairie Grove Church in Gaston. In 2002, he was inducted into the Delaware County Athletic Hall of Fame. He was a 15 year awarded member of the selective service system for the U.S. government and was also awarded the District 6 Principal of the Year Award. His two favorite hobbies were fishing and golf. Dick is survived by the delight of his life, his devoted and loving daughter, Lori Rachelle Newell and her husband Doug, who was like a son to Dick; and Lori Armantrout who was like a second daughter; his brother-in-law, Steve Janney (wife Kathy); nephews, Jay Janney, Stuart Janney, and 'Little' Rodney Miller (wife Toni); Nieces, Jana Arbogast (husband Matt) and Cathy Jo Mills; great-nephews, his best buddy, Ethan Arbogast, Ben Janney, Jim Mills (wife Laura), and Pete Mills; great-nieces, Bridget Janney, Margaret Janney, Jeni Wissel (husband George), Carrie Mills, and Amy Miller; Aunt Ester Nichols; Step-brother, Jim Mauck; step-sister, Lois McClug (husband Ed); and several cousins, step-nieces, and step-nephews.Dick was preceded in death by his loving wife, Carole Jean Johnson; mother, Nina Johnson; father, William "Bill" Johnson; stepmother, Effie Mauck; sister, Nancy Johnson; brother, Harold Johnson; sister-in-law, Pat Miller; step-sister, Barbara Martini; and step-sister-in-law, Joan Mauck. The family would like to thank Dr. Earl Lloyd for his excellent care as Dick's doctor and friend. They would also like to thank Cindy Morgan, Mike and Stella Bush, Pastor Joe and Jennifer Blaylock, Taffy Thompson, Kim Linn, and Deb Saxon for their assistance in caring for Dick at his home during his illness. A funeral service will be held at 2:00 p.m. Saturday, April 1, 2017, at the Wes-Del High School, Richard E. Johnson Gymnasium, 10000 N. Co. Rd. 600 W., Muncie, IN. Pastor Joe Blaylock will officiate. Burial will follow in Thompson Cemetery with military honors conducted by the Veterans of Delaware County Honor Guard. Friends and family may gather to share and remember from 4:30 P.M. until 8:00 P.M. Friday, March 31, 2017, Wes-Del High School, Richard E. Johnson Gymnasium, and also one hour prior to his funeral service at the gymnasium. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be given to the Richard and Carole Johnson Memorial Scholarship fund through Wes-Del Superintendants office, 10290 N. Co. Rd. 600 W. Gaston, IN 47342, to be awarded to a Wes-Del High School student. Share a memory of Dick and leave your condolences at
Funeral arrangements are entrusted to Gant Funeral Homes, Gaston Chapel. The Gant and Miller families are honored to celebrate Dick's life with his family and community.