Reta Mae Johnson, age 99, a resident of Bronson, passed away early Friday, March 13, 2020, at her home. She was born Aug. 4, 1920, on the family farm northeast of Bronson, the daughter of John Christian Ermel and Mary Susan Lawry Ermel. She attended Dry Ridge Grade School and graduated from Bronson High School in 1937. At the age of 17, she began teaching grade school. She taught at Blazing Star, Victory and later Bronson schools.
She married Buford William Johnson on May 21, 1939, in Fort Scott. Reta Mae’s main priority was taking care of her family and her home. She enjoyed working in her garden, tending her flowers and looking after her chickens and geese. She was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother and enjoyed attending her grandchildren’s sporting events. She also enjoyed decorating cakes and painting. She was a member of Bronson Baptist Church.
Survivors include her four children, Judy Wilson and husband, Rex, of Bronson, Ronda Murrow, of Uniontown, Vlad Johnson and wife, Donna, of Wamego, and Wes Johnson and wife, Billie Sue, also of Bronson. Also surviving are 12 grandchildren, Stacy Davis (Matt), Jana Wilson (Brian), Marci Fox (Mickey), Lisa Hemby, Nikki Burks (Joe), Debbie Sharkawi (Tarek), Chad Murrow (Misty), Julie Shroyer (Zachary), Casey Johnson (Song), Trevor Johnson, Clint Johnson (Angela), and Brandi Spainhoward (Mitch); 30 great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren with one more on the way.
Her husband, Buford, preceded her in death on Feb. 12, 2010. She was also preceded in death by two sisters, Doris Fink and Maxine Burt.
Rob Mauk will conduct funeral services at 10:30 a.m. Friday at Bronson Baptist Church. Burial will follow in Bronson Cemetery. The family will receive friends from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday at Cheney Witt Chapel. Memorials are suggested to Bronson Baptist Church and may be left in care of the Cheney Witt Chapel, 201 S. Main, P.O. Box 347, Fort Scott, KS 66701. Words of remembrance may be submitted to the online guestbook at cheneywitt.com.