Opal Auxier Johnson, 95, of Hesperia, CA, passed away in the early hours of Nov. 1, 2012 at Hesperia, CA. All who had the fortune to know her knew her as a loving and caring Christian woman. Opal was born on July 23, 1917 in Manila, Kentucky to parents Earl and Bess Auxier.
After Opal’s birth the family relocated from the hills of Kentucky to eastern Nebraska.
At the age of 10,she joined the First Christian Church at Verdon, where she received full immersion baptism. She graduated from Verdon High School and received a teacher’s scholarship to Peru State Teachers College. She married Cecil, her high school sweetheart, after graduation. Together they pursued work in the profession of public education. Her first school was at Salem with an assignment at Verdon School following; she shared many treasured memories of these years when mentoring her grandchildren.
The couple welcomed one child into their home, a son, Larry Cecil. She was a “Blue Star” wife as her husband served in the US Army in the Battle of the Bulge in Europe; he is a recipient of the Purple Heart Medal.
Her son and grandchildren remember her as a kind, gentle, patient, yet determined mother and grandmother who encouraged them to pursue their goals in life.
Opal was accomplished as a writer and was renowned as a master seamstress. She published her memoirs in “Niches, Notches and a few Glitches”, an autobiography that journals through her life during the Depression in eastern Nebraska. Along with her writing pursuits, she was a generous individual who was passionate about providing the opportunity for education to all who pursued it. In 1959 the Johnson’s moved to California to continue their careers in public education. Opal taught at Camarillo High School. After retirement from the California Public School System, she and her husband moved to Nipomo, CA, where she worked with City officials to establish a library in the community. She was an active and dedicated member of St. Andrews United Methodist Church, in Santa Maria, CA, where she performed the duties of liturgist and was an integral team member on the staff for producing the church’s newsletter and the Sunday programs.
Opal is survived by her son, Larry Cecil Johnson; granddaughter, Stacie Johnson (Chris) Bundy, of Hesperia, CA; great-granddaughter, Callie McNary, of Woodland Hills, CA; great-granddaughter Meag (Brad) Bowles, of Panama City, FL; granddaughter, Marcie Johnson (Gary) Kennedy; great-granddaughter Lesli Kennedy, all of Madison, AL; great-grandson, Dereck (Genevieve Eller) Kennedy, and their son, her great-great-grandson, Caleb Nicolas Kennedy of Fort Hood, TX; brothers: Robert Auxier, of High Point, NC, andCharles David Auxier of Memphis, TN; and sister, Wanda Auxier Colvin of Mt. Dora, FL.
She was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Cecil George Johnson, and granddaughters Jamie Kay Johnson and Hallie Lynn Johnson.
A graveside service is scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 31, 2015 at Verdon Cemetery. Maurice Taylor, her nephew, will officiate the ceremony. All are welcome to attend and celebrate Opal’s life.