Obituary of Karen Jill Johnson
Karen Jill Johnson, or “Rara” as she became lovingly known to her family and closest friends, passed peacefully on Tuesday, February 22nd having just turned 75 after a prolonged illness.
She was born to Wanda Ruth Jones and Terrence Albert Sims on February 2nd, 1947 in Montgomery, West Virginia. She married on the 25th of November, 1966 and following, had three children- Gregory Michael (Savannah, GA), Erin Kelly and Michael Godin (Charleston, SC), and Darren Patrick and Amy Libby (Gorham, ME). She then became a loving and devoted grandmother to Dylan Kristopher and Brittany Reynolds (Emory, VA) and Michael Zane (Atlanta, GA) and great-grandmother to Liam Gabriel and Miloh Kristopher.
Jill devoted over 30 years of her life to the service and care for
others as a Registered Nurse in Virginia. She spent 21 years in service at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center of Salem, VA where she formed many lasting friendships and bonds with her colleagues and patients. Jill loved spending time with her family and her home was
always the center of gatherings around the holidays. She also loved the beach, spending many vacations there either with family or sometimes on her own, with her toes in the waters of the South Carolina coast. Jill was also known for her love of animals and not only had many furry friends but was a philanthropist for multiple causes aimed at the welfare and better treatment of animals.
The family will be having a private ceremony to celebrate and commemorate her life and impact. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you make a donation to the World Wildlife Foundation, an organization that Jill supported for many years.
“I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky, And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by;
And the wheel’s kick and the wind’s song and the white sail’s shaking, And a grey mist on the sea’s face, and a grey dawn breaking.
I must go down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.
I must go down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life,
To the gull’s way and the whale’s way where the wind’s like a whetted knife; And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover,
And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick’s over.”
-John Masefield, Sea Fever