Celebrating Bryan Johnson
The life I am celebrating is my dad Bryan Johnson. My Dad lived for 90 years. He was born short days after the stock market crash that started the Great Depression and he died in the midst of a world pandemic. In between those years, the Berlin Wall came down on one of his birthdays. Despite all those events my dad himself lived simply and quietly. The things that were important to him were his family, providing for them, and nature.
He and his twin brother Wayne were born in a place called Eyebrow Saskatchewan that does not even exist anymore. He left school in grade 8 to start working; determined to make a better life. Eventually he made his way to British Columbia where he remained for the rest of his life. During my lifetime there were times when he worked during the day and went to college in the evening to get his welding tickets. Later, he returned to college, working steady graveyard shifts at a sawmill so that he could attend college during the daytime to get his Millwright Certificate. Always making sure that he was providing for us at the same time he was trying to improve life for us all.
My Dad loved nature in a deep and respectful way. He could grow anything. He loved and respected animals. He had many beloved dogs throughout his life and walked his last dog Pita every day up to the last week of his life.
Much like so many other people that we meet at Hospice, my Dad died the way he lived; quietly and determinedly. He lived at home with my mother up to the last week of his life when he had a sudden health crisis and went to the hospital. He had been clear several years before he actually went, that he did not want big interventions done to keep him alive. He reminded us all of that when he was in the hospital and was assured that we understood.
From that point, palliative care was what he received. He had one more thing that he was determined to complete before he went. He waited for the arrival of my son and I. He gave us a very precious ¾ hour together before he died. I miss him a lot and am so grateful for all that he brought to my life. Now when I hear birds or am outdoors I connect with him knowing that he is in the place he loved so much while here with us.
From Bryan’s daughter, Allyson Whiteman