Obituary of Jimmy Johnson
Jimmy M. Johnson, Sr. was born on October 31, 1947, in Orangeburg County, SC. He departed this life July 26, 2021, at New York-Presbyterian Hudson Valley Hospital, Peekskill, NY.
He was the firstborn of nine siblings. He is preceded in death by his loving parents Harvey and Mary Inell Richardson Johnson; beloved brothers: Harvey Johnson, Jr, and Daniel L. Johnson; a devoted and loving wife, the mother of their children, Grace G. Johnson; and beloved daughter, Mercedes Yvonne Johnson.
At the age of twelve, Jimmy made his confession of faith in Jesus Christ at Old Mt. Zion Baptist Church, Reverend Wilson, Pastor, in Bowman, SC. There he was warmly welcomed and embraced as a member of the church and was baptized. Throughout his life and travels he has read and studied the bible. He attended numerous churches and services. Most recently Jimmy aligned himself with Mt. Olivet Baptist Church, Reverend Young, Pastor, Peekskill, NY. It was here that he joined his wife Jackie in becoming a member and made a public declaration of faith in Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior. Just prior to his death he was a faithful participant in virtual bible study for over a year. Jimmy’s life anchoring scripture is Psalm 116. For Jimmy, this Psalm attests to his testimony of the despair and the depths of darkness from which God delivered him, and his acknowledgement of his faith and love for the Lord.
And in a display of genuine gratitude and compassion for others, Jimmy has for more than 30 years fervently and faithfully served and witnessed, offering “good orderly direction” one on one, and before numerous organizations and other groups in a sincere effort to free others, also bound by despair and the depths of darkness from whence he has been delivered. And as it was with him, many others have too been set free and continue to testify of the tremendous role that Jimmy played in their life transformation.
Jimmy held membership in The VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars), DAV (Disabled American Veterans), NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) and was a strong advocate and supporter of bountiful civil rights initiatives.
Jimmy was quite astute as an avid competitor in both the games of Chess and Backgammon. He held great affection for the sport and the family of competitors of whom shared his like passion for the game.
Jimmy’s early childhood and secondary education was in the Orangeburg County, South Carolina School System. It was there that he earned and received his high school diploma, graduating from Bethune Memorial High School, Bowman, SC. Upon completion of high school, he matriculated at Voorhees College, Denmark, SC. Thereafter, under the U.S. Involuntary Selective Service, he was drafted at the age of 19 into the US Army in 1967. During his tenure in the U.S. Army, he served his country faithfully and honorably with bravery and valor as an infantry soldier, serving in the war zones of Vietnam. He excelled in this extremely dangerous assignment and attained the rank of Sargent. Jimmy was awarded numerous commendations on behalf of his exemplary service: National Defense Service Medal, Combat Infantry Badge, Purple Heart, Air Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, Vietnam Service Medal and the Combat Infantryman Badge.
Upon successful separation from active-duty service in 1969, Jimmy then transferred to the U.S. Army Reserve Station Ft. Meade Maryland. While in Maryland, he embarked upon a career as a police officer, thus, after successfully completing all necessary training requirements, he was installed as a police officer, and joined ranks with The Baltimore, Maryland Police Force.
Jimmy later relocated to New York City with his young family. There he launched a successful moving business, “Double J Moving” while also employed by The US Postal Service, and the New York City Transit Authority, from which he retired after many years of faithful service. He subsequently relocated to Peekskill, NY. It was there that he purchased his home, met his wife Jackie, and resided until his death.
Jimmy is survived by his beautiful, loving, and devoted wife, Jacqueline (Jackie), his calming, steady, and unwavering support, with whom he loved and enjoyed an exciting and adventurous life. Jackie has been his quiet strength through both the joy and the pain leading up to his death. Jimmy and Jackie began a budding relationship fourteen years ago that beautifully bloomed and blossomed into holy matrimony on June 16, 2014; with this union he was blessed with another beloved son, Paul Odean, along with his Dearly Beloved Children: Mary Wyetta Johnson (Bronx, NY); Jimmy M. Johnson, Jr. “Mann” (NY); Ché Inell Johnson (Schuylerville, NY); Michelle Perez, and his goddaughter, Nicole; His Dearly Beloved Brothers: Andrew Johnson (Lester Marie), Orangeburg, SC; Michael A. Johnson, Carlsbad, NM; Tony F. Johnson, Orangeburg, SC. Beloved Sisters: Mary Denise Rapier (John), Nashville, TN; Gloria J. Johnson (Elwis), Tacoma, WA; Merceil M. Bowditch, Severn, MD; His Doting and Beloved Grandchildren whom he spoke of with such adoration; Jacob, Chloé, Emilia, Christopher, Jarrett, Izael, Oxanya, Sterling and Oriañya; Beloved Aunts: Daisy Goodwin, NYC (his dearly, dearly beloved aunt whom has been his undying support during his many years while living in NY); Betty Lary, and Starmanda Richardson, Bowman, SC, both of whom share many fond, beautiful and exciting memories of adventures and other experiences growing up together with Jimmy, and throughout later years.
Jimmy was big in stature, and always rendered a big response. When asked how are you doing? His response always included “Truly Blessed!” He was big in personality, big in support of family, big on politics and world events, big in living life on the edge, and one who was never shy of a great thrill. He had a big heart and shared freely. He loved big; He loved his wife and family dearly, including all those who he affectionally embraced as his brothers and sisters of another mother. He will be sorely missed by his beloved family, which includes his beloved sisters and brothers in laws, nieces, nephews, friends and associates all too numerous to mention by name. Jimmy, the big man with the big heart now leaves a BIG HOLE in the hearts of all those who dearly loved him. And true to his own words, for those who had a chance to truly get to know him, and share in his life journey can certainly affirm to being much wiser, much stronger, and much more aware; and to sum it all up… we are “TRULY BLESSED!”
Visitation will be held at the United Methodist Church of Peekskill, 1040 Main Street, Peekskill, NY on Saturday, August 7, 2021, from 9:00 am to 10:00 am.
Home Going Service will be held at the United Methodist Church of Peekskill, 1040 Main Street, Peekskill, NY on Saturday, August 7, 2021, from 10:00 am to 11:30 am
Interment to follow at Hillside Cemetery, 1033 Oregon Road, Cortlandt Manor, NY 10567.To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Jimmy Johnson, please visit Tribute Store