IAN ALISTAIR JOHNSON
May 15 1944 – January 15 2024
“Never let the truth interfere with a good story”
While visiting Winnipeg, Ian was walking to a store to purchase his daily newspapers when he experienced a cardiac arrest. He did not suffer, linger, or have the opportunity to provide his opinions on the contents of the newspaper that day.
Ian leaves behind his loving family, wife Pippi, daughter Amy (Kevin Kozar), son Derek (Crystal) Johnson, grandchildren Charlie, Harry and Miles Kozar of Thunder Bay, and Jade and Alex Johnson of Winnipeg. Ian is survived by numerous Johnson relations far and wide, particularly his brother Jim and sister-in-law Anne Johnson, in laws Janice Horton, Wendy and Ron Hutchinson and their families, dear friends Sheila Charran, Margaret, Dan, Michael and Jason Schram. Beyond his family, Ian leaves friends across the world as he connected with others wherever he travelled.
Ian had an idyllic childhood in Kenora and on Coney Island with his parents Jim and Marg Johnson, brothers David, Doug and Jimmy, and all of the Johnson cousins. Ian attended United College and the University of Manitoba, completing a degree in Pharmacy. Most important in his university career was his membership in Phi Delta Theta where he met numerous lifelong friends who sustained him through all of life’s challenges and triumphs.
Ian became the third generation of his family to proudly operate Johnson’s Pharmacy in Kenora Ontario. He truly loved his job, interacting with his customers, offering advice to all, and facilitating connections. He thrived on the social aspect of being a small-town business operator. In retirement, he brought his competitive edge and his love of a good time to the Windstar golf course in Naples, Florida.
Ian created a wonderful life for his friends and family centered around the camp on Treaty Island, where there was always a party with a band, a barbeque, a lake cruise and a refreshment in the ice machine. Numerous guests were welcomed to share in the magic of a summer on Lake of the Woods. His afternoons at Hammer City, included sitting on the dock with a frosty OV, telling stories, dispensing advice and laughing loudly.
Ian was a lifelong sportsman – hockey player, curler, golfer and more. He was a dedicated fan of the CFL – proud of attending 25 consecutive Grey Cups, and the stories told afterwards always exceeded the believable. As the Czar of Wednesday golf in Naples and Thursday golf in Kenora, he loved bringing old and new friends together, always making sure all were included and enjoyed themselves fully. He drove big cars and big boats, their noise matching his distinct Johnson voice.
Ian made everything happen, and we will miss him always.
A cremation has taken place and there is no service at this time. A celebration of life will be held in Kenora this summer. In memory of Ian’s love for his community, please direct your tributes to the Lake of the Woods District Hospital Foundation.
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