Carol Naomi Johnson was born in Boise, Idaho on March 14, 1928 to Carl and Florence (Anderson) Johnson. After graduating from Escalon (CA) High School in 1945, Carol attended Gustavus Adolphus College and graduated from Lewis & Clark College in 1949. Carol served as a RN and taught nursing at the Emanuel Hospital nursing school (an extension school of Pacific Lutheran College).
The nursing students (all female) studied their lab sciences at Concordia Academy in NE Portland (which was all male). The Emanuel nursing students and the Concordia students connected Carol with Arthur Wahlers (Academy Principal) and set them up on a blind date. They met in the Concordia gymnasium under the scoreboard and went out for their first date at Rose’s Delicatessen on February 22, 1952. Carol and Art became engaged on October 17, 1952 and Carol married Art on June 7, 1953 at The Saron Lutheran Church in Escalon, California officiated by Carol’s father, Rev. Carl W. Johnson. The couple was blessed with 4 children and Carol took a break from nursing to be a stay-at-home mother and homemaker. She returned to nursing at Emanuel from 1966 -1977 at which point she retired permanently from nursing.
Carol enjoyed several hobbies including decoupage, making greeting cards, gardening, taking photos, and especially genealogy. Carol was very proud of her Swedish heritage and she and Art took several trips to Sweden and Germany to research the family trees of both the Johnson and Wahlers family. She loved to watch football and was a die-hard San Francisco 49er fan her entire life. Carol was a committed Christian and was a long-time member of St. Michaels Lutheran Church where she was an officer of the Ladies Guild, Bible Class leader and where she established and maintained many friendships. Carol and Art were famous for their large Thanksgiving gatherings which included family, friends, and people who needed a place to go on the fourth Thursday of November. Carol and Art spent many wonderful and relaxing days at their beach house in Lincoln City. Carol and Art were vigorous advocates for people with disabilities and the couple worked tirelessly on the local, regional and national level with Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon and the Northwest District of The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod to advocate for barrier free facilities and age appropriate lifestyles for all people. Carol was awarded the Christi Crux Award from Concordia University for her service to the Church and the Community. Carol loved to travel, attend and listen to musical theater, read and socialize with her friends and family.
Carol was predeceased by her husband Arthur Wahlers (2014), her parents, Carl and Florence Johnson and her brother Myron Johnson. Carol is survived by her son Mark (Yoshino) of Portland, Oregon; her daughter Miriam (Mimi) Musella (Steve) of Pomona, California; her son David of Los Angeles, California; her son Joel (Dawn) of Napa, California; two granddaughters Nicki and Maggie Wahlers of Portland, Oregon; and one grandson, Matthew Wahlers of Napa, California.
Carol died peacefully with family members and she has now joined the great cloud of witnesses in heaven with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. A Celebration of Life service will be held at a future date. Memorial gifts can be made to the Good Shepherd Fund (www.gsfcare.org).
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Good Shepherd Fund
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Good Shepherd Fund was founded as a 501 (c) 3, non-profit organization in 1970, by Pastor Harold “Swede” Johnson.
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