American Patriotic 11

Gary Johnson

1957 ~ 2024 (age 66) 66 Years Old

Gary Johnson Obituary

Gary Johnson, affectionately known as “Papa G” was born on March 19, 1957, to the late Otha William Johnson and Ethel Nell Cleckley.  Gary was a native New Yorker, born at Metropolitan Hospital.  Much of his youth life was spent in the Polo Ground Towers.  It was there that he met the love of his life, Ines Rivera. On September 11, 1987, they were married, and they shared 36 years of marital bliss.  From that union, they were blessed with two beautiful daughters, Gabrielle, and the late Danielle.  They also shared 2 sons, George, and Darryl, and 2 more daughters, Garris, and Jenna.
Gary attended the elementary school system of New York City.  He went on to attend Louis D. Brandeis High School, followed by Hunter College where he received a bachelor’s degree in economics.  With the skillset he obtained in college, Gary and his childhood friends became entrepreneurs of the sporting goods store, affectionately called “Sugar Hill Sports Shop.”  Gary’s love of clothing was displayed each time he left the house.  Gary was also a Marine Veteran and proudly served our country for 4 years.
Gary worked at the U.S. Postal Service for 38 years from which he retired.   During his tenure, he was promoted to the position of Postmaster in the district of Columbia, VA.  Gary was a part of the NAACP.  He encouraged his children and grandchildren to be God-fearing Christians. He led by example, as Gary served in the church as a Eucharistic Minister, Usher, and the Knights of Columbus.  One of his famous quotes to his children was; “No need to thank me, I did it because I wanted to. I tell you all the time if you need me, I’m here! God’s Blessings.”
First and foremost Gary was a devoted husband, father, grandfather of 15, and friend to many. Gary was a coach and mentor for the community.  He had a tremendous love for basketball and the trophies that he acquired along the way were a testament to how well he played. He had a special gift to inspire and motivate others around him. He was driven, enthusiastic, and eager to help others accomplish their goals and support everyone’s dreams and passions.  He and his wife also became foster parents.
Gary passed away Thursday, January 4, 2024, at the age of 66. His baby girl, Danielle Johnson predeceased him in her untimely death, also his parents, Otha and Ethel, and his stepfather John E. Thomas; brother Otha and sister Renee.  He leaves to mourn and cherish his memory; his wife, Ines Rivera Johnson; his children George (Amber), Daryl (Jessica), Garris, Jenna, and Gabrielle (Christian).  His 15 grandchildren, Dakota, Dahmir, Nyah, Isaac, Darien, Asiah, Selene, Leyna, Ivan, Amina, Sianna, Cameron, Chloe, Langston, and KaiMonae. 6 Siblings, Gail (Eddie), Ellen, Michael (Lana), Michelle (Wendell), Mark (Pamela), and Marvin. Half-siblings, Regina Hamilton (James) and Donna Fickling. Brother in Laws, Luis (Evelyn), and Adrian (Ruthy). He also leaves behind a host of relatives, nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends. His closest friends were Demetrius, John, and Will.
Gary’s love and contagious smile will be greatly missed by so many.  Rest in peace, “Papa G.”


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Vigil Service
January 18, 2024

10:00 AM
Saint Peter & Paul Catholic Church
4309 Thomas Jefferson Pkwy.
Palmyra, VA 22963

Funeral Mass
January 18, 2024

11:00 AM
Saint Peter & Paul Catholic Church
4309 Thomas Jefferson Pkwy.
Palmyra, VA 22963


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