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Leland B. Johnson, 76

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Leland B. Johnson, age 76, of Roberts, died Monday, Feb. 17, at United Hospital from complications arising from heart surgery.

Leland was born on June 10, 1937, in Hudson Township to Leroy and Margaret (Johnson) Johnson. As a young man, Leland spent time riding horses, hunting, working (and playing) with his family. He especially enjoyed playing cards with his grandpa. His first marriage resulted in the birth of three children, Leianne, Bradley, and Kurtis. He was united in marriage to Kathleen Hall on Dec. 17, 1966. This 47 year union resulted in the birth of three more children, Renee, Jean, and Brian. Leland and Kathy made their home in Roberts, Wis.

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After working several years for St. Croix County road maintenance, Leland spent 35 years utilizing his strong work ethic in the display and trade show business in St. Paul, retiring in the Spring of 2000. He loved music and dancing, and could often be found at community dances listening to the Valley Boys. Leland was a dedicated sportsman who loved to be outdoors hunting, fishing and snowmobiling. He also loved sports and spent many years coaching area fast pitch and slow pitch softball teams, from bar league to the summer recreation program, bringing home many championship trophies in the process. Leland was an avid Green Bay Packers fan, and was a strong supporter of high school athletics. He spent many long hours in gymnasiums over the past 30 years, most recently following and cheering on the St. Croix Central and Hudson Raider wrestling teams. Leland also enjoyed being outdoors, gardening and taking care of the lawn, and he could often be found on his John Deere tractor as he traveled around the neighborhood tilling gardens in the spring and blowing snow in the winter. Leland was a phenomenal card player, and he loved playing cards, of any kind. Most recently this meant playing Euchre at the Cave Inn on Tuesday nights.

Leland was well-known for his generosity and for his sense of community. He was one of the community members that was instrumental in the development and construction of the Roberts Park and Ball Field. Leland was also a member of the St. Croix Central Wrestling Association.

He was recognized for his community involvement in 2004, when he was presented with the Good Neighbor Award. But most of all, Leland enjoyed his family. He was a devoted husband and father, and above all else, he loved offering them his support and spending time with all his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. He loved them unconditionally and was very proud of them all.

Leland was preceded in death by his parents, Leroy and Margaret; his children Leianne, and Bradley (in infancy); his step-father, Leon Stork; grandson Dylan Nelson; siblings Lavonne, Butch, Lauren, and Marietta Johnston; father-in-law Leveritt Hall; brother-in-law Kevin Kempf; and sister-in-law Ellen Hall.

He is survived by wife Kathleen, children Kurtis (Bobbie Warner), Renee Johnson Gullixson, Jean Johnson, Brian and Stacy (Donnay) Johnson; grandchildren Sharalanae, LaRacia, Billie Jo, Karter, Brandin, Tiffany (Eric) Olson, Craig Gullixson, Reanna Gullixson, Ava Johnson, and Lincoln Johnson; great-grandchildren, Jade, Bayzhia, Josie, Justice, Darian, Devan, Rowan, Jack, and Rian. In addition he is survived by his mother-in-law Lois Hall; siblings Lowell (Sharon) Johnson, Lee Kempf, Faye (Carl) Luepke, and Dan (Chris) Stork; sister-in-law Joyce Johnson; brothers-in-law Duane (Fran) Hall, Glenn (Linda) Hall, and Tom Johnston; as well as his loyal companion, Bayou. He is further survived by longtime friend and hunting buddy, Charlie (Mary) Grupe; and honorary grandchildren Noah, Charli, and Brody Nusbaum.

Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. on Friday, Feb. 21, at the Roberts Congregational United Church of Christ, with Pastor Melinda Feller officiating. A visitation will be held from 4-8 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 20, at the O'Connell Family Funeral Home in Baldwin, Wis., and also an hour before the funeral.

Honorary pallbearers will be Charlie Grupe, and Dick Colbeth. Active pallbearers are Brian Johnson, Kurt Johnson, Craig Gullixson, Pete Nusbaum, Lowell Johnson, and Dan Stork.

Memorials are preferred to Hazel Mackin Community Library in Roberts, or the Roberts UCC Building Fund.

Services entrusted to the O'Connell Family Funeral Home. (715)386-3725. www.oconnellfuneralhomes.com

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