Richard S. Johnson

September 07, 1915 ‒ May 10, 2005

Sarasota, Florida

Richard S. Johnson age 89 of Sarasota, Florida, died May 10, 2005, at Cabot Reserve on the Green extended Care Facility in Sarasota. He was born in Mount Vernon, September 7, 1915, son of the late Issac and Louise (Garber) Johnson. After spending his early years in Mount Vernon he enlisted in the U. S. Army Air Corps and saw extensive action in WW II as a B-25 Mitchell Bomber pilot. He participated in action in North Africa, Sicily, Italy and the invasion of Europe. His plane was shot down over Europe and he was a Prisoner of War for 28 months in Poland. Following his discharge he enrolled at the University of Florida and graduated in 1948 with a degree in Horticulture. For many years he owned and operated R. S. Johnson Wholesale Plants in Sarasota, specializing in exotic species and difficult to grow plants. Mr. Johnson was an avid reader who donated his extensive library to the Sarasota Garden Club and the Fruitville, Florida, Library. He was an accomplished artist in pen and ink drawings and abstract wood carvings and carvings of birds. He was an avid saltwater sailor and built several sailboats, winning a number of races and participated in the final Tampa to Havana race prior to the fall of Cuba. Mr. Johnson is the final surviving member of his immediate family and his legacy is many loyal friends, his art, his books and his nursery.

He is survived by a niece Sue (Frank) Galuszka of North Royalton, Ohio, and nephew Thad (Dorothy) Lockwood of Byron, Georgia. He was preceded in death by sisters Pauline Hutsell, Ruth Johnson, Marjorie Denham and Elizabeth “Lib” Lockwood and brother Robert Johnson.

The Dowds-Snyder Funeral Home of Mount Vernon, Ohio, is assisting with arrangements. A graveside service will be held at a later date in Bellville Cemetery. This obituary and a guest registry may be viewed online at