Mary Elizabeth Johnson (1933-2021)

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Mary Elizabeth Johnson, or Aunt Mary E as we called her is from Dickinson, North Dakota.

She was born on 10 Jun 1933 in Fargo, North Dakota while her birth mother stayed at what is now called The Village / LSS; the home for unwed mothers in North Dakota back in the 1930’s. Ward Kendall and Peggy Tommie (Conner) Johnson from Dickinson adopted her. Unable to have their own children they adopted three; Ken, Mary, and Conner.

Mary remained in Prescott, Arizona after retiring and she died at home on 5 July 2021. Her wishes were cremation and no memorial service. I created a FindaGrave page for her.

She grew up in Dickinson and graduated high school in 1951. In 1953, she graduated with a two-year degree from Stephens College in Columbia, Mississippi; a private women’s college that also had an equestrian program. She earned a bachelor’s degree from University of North Dakota, Grand Forks in 1956 and has a Master’s degree from Western New Mexico University.

Most of her professional life was at colleges and universities. She worked at Mary College (now the University of Mary) in Bismarck, at Dickinson State, and finally as Dean of Students at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, Arizona.

Mary had horses and her favorite was ‘Sweet Talk’, a registered Morgan.

We convinced Aunt Mary to take an Ancestry DNA test in 2016. DNA shows that her birth mother was Ruth Roberta Brueske (1914-1939) from Barnes County, North Dakota. Her birth father was James Archibald Shaw (1918-1997) from Divide County, North Dakota.

4 thoughts on “Mary Elizabeth Johnson (1933-2021)

  1. We are sadden to hear about this Dear Ladies passing. She will be terribly missed by all who loved her in North Dakota.

  2. We all have had amazing women in our lives! Aunt Mary was one of the best! She will be so missed, but will always be in my thoughts and heart!

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