Obituaries

Samuel B. Johnson

MADISON- Dr. Samuel B. Johnson died on July 11, 2019 in Madison.

He was born on March 4, 1937 in Chicago to Walker Buchanan Johnson and Marjorie Chase Johnson, and spent his childhood in Madison with his parents, sister and brothers in a house on the shore of Lake Mendota. 

Sam attended Madison West High School, and received his bachelor's degree from the University of Wisconsin, where he was a member of the Alpha Delta Phi fraternity in the class of 1959. He received his MD from the UW School of Medicine in 1963. From 1964 to 1966 he served in Korea as an officer in the U.S. Army, returning to Wisconsin afterwards to complete his residency in anesthesiology in June 1970. Sam spent most of his medical career in Green Bay treating patients at St. Mary's and Bellin Hospitals. There, in his spare time, he attended Green Bay Packer games and took frequent sailing trips on the Bay of Green Bay with his two children. One of his abiding passions was the stewardship of a family plot of trees in central Wisconsin; he attended numerous annual meetings of the American Tree Farm System and became an expert on sustainable forestry practices. After he retired from practicing medicine, he would often list his profession as 'tree farmer.'

In retirement, Sam spent time in Florida, New Mexico, and Massachusetts before returning to Madison in 2000. He was enthusiastic about the performing arts, attending symphonies, concerts, and plays in Madison and places farther afield. He loved the outdoors and was an avid cross country skier, hiker, turkey hunter, and nature photographer. On holidays he enlivened family gatherings with quirky gifts and tidbits of family lore from generations past. His family and friends will remember him as we walk in the woods, as we listen to classical music, as we attend Badger Hockey games or Green Bay Packer games, as we read a new book on naval history, and as we gather together over a meal. 

He is survived by his children Bertram (Betsy Nesbitt) Johnson and Emily Johnson; siblings Walker C. (Carolyn) Johnson, Elizabeth Johnson Ingle (Kenneth), and Buchanan Johnson (Ann Hales); and his nieces and nephews and grand-nieces and grand-nephews. He was predeceased by his father Walker B. "Bud" Johnson and mother Marjorie C. "Mardie" Johnson. 

A Memorial Service will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, September 14, 2019, at CRESS FUNERAL HOME, 3610 Speedway Road, Madison. Friends may greet family one hour prior to the service. 

Memorials may be made to the UW-Madison Arboretum, 1207 Seminole Highway, Madison, 53711; to Wisconsin Athletics, c/o the University of Wisconsin Foundation 1848 University Avenue, Madison, 53726; or to the Madison Public Library Foundation, 201 W. Mifflin Street, Madison, 53703. 

Cress Funeral and Cremation Service
3610 Speedway Rd, Madison
608-238-3434


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