Mary Lou Johnson, loving and devoted wife of Gordy Johnson, passed away on Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021 with her family by her side. Mary Lou and Gordy recently celebrated their 47th wedding anniversary.
Mary Lou had many chapters in her long, but too short life. She was born in Elgin, Oregon to Klon and Cuba Mathews. After high school, she married her late husband and the two settled in Uniontown, Washington. In 1963 and 1964, Mary Lou’s son and daughter were born. After her first husband passed away, Mary Lou and Gordy found each other through a blind date set up by Mary Lou’s younger sister. The two married in 1974. They lived and worked in Washington, Wisconsin, and Arizona.
After arriving in Arizona in 1988, Mary Lou worked for the Pima County Board of Supervisors, and Pima County Departments of Transportation and Public Works. Mary Lou retired in 2002 and settled in the retirement community of Quail Creek. Never one to let grass grow under her feet, shortly after her retirement Mary Lou became a member of the State of Arizona Foster Care Review Board until her recent death. While living in Quail Creek, Mary Lou enjoyed a very active retirement lifestyle. She played golf, participated in a Bible study group and various fundraising events, and traveled to numerous countries for awesome adventures. As an accomplished hiker, Mary Lou hiked rim to rim of the Grand Canyon and found her happy place on Mount Wrightson. She also served the Lord in various capacities at Our Lady of the Valley Catholic Church.
Mary Lou loved her family fiercely. Her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren are blessed to have countless memories of their time together. With a quick laugh, outgoing personality, and warm heart, Mary Lou is known to never have met a stranger. Whether you knew Mary Lou well, or just met her yesterday, you would feel drawn to her because of her charisma and positivity.
Mary Lou is survived by her husband Gordy, son Brad Lemon and Maureen, daughter Brenda Murty and her husband Charlie, granddaughters Lindsay (Ryan), Jaden, several adoring great-grandchildren, sister Colleen (Gary), sister-in-law Kathy, nieces, nephews, friends too numerous to count, and her beloved dog, Bentley. She is preceded in death by her parents, parents-in-law, two brothers, a sister, and her grandson Ian.
Funeral services for Mary Lou will be held on Thursday, Oct. 14, 2021 at Our Lady of Valley Catholic Church at 10 a.m. If you are unable to attend the funeral in person, you are welcome to join the Facebook Group titled Friends & Family of Mary Lou Johnson where the funeral will be streaming live. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in memory of Mary Lou to: Arizona Friends of Foster Children Foundation, 360 E Coronado Rd. #19, Phoenix, AZ 85044.
The family expresses their deepest gratitude for the outpouring of love and support during this most difficult time.