Milton Martin Johnson, 93, died Sunday, Jan. 21, 2018, at his home in Grangeville, Idaho. Milton was born to Harry and Della Johnson on July 7, 1924.
As one of eight children, Milton grew up on a farm in LaGrange, Mo., where his love of the outdoors began. At eighteen, Milton entered the army as an orderly. He served this great nation three years in World War II, where he went on to become a medic and surgical technician. Milton was stationed in the Philippines and Japan. Upon returning from the war, he attended St. Elizabeth Hospital in Washington D. C., where he completed his nursing training in 1952. In 1953, he graduated from the University of Pennsylvania as a nurse of anesthesia. Milton spent the next 47 years of his life as a nurse anesthetist, retiring at the age of 76.
In his personal life, Milton often felt most at home when he was outdoors. Whether rounding up cows in the fall or taking backcountry camping trips on horseback, Milton enjoyed being outside. While he was never one for the big city and crowds, Milton always enjoyed swapping stories with family and friends on the front porch. Milton also enjoyed raising registered Morgan horses and working on the ranch. His ranching lifestyle and thrifty nature led to his love of leatherwork. Milton could often be found in his home leather shop, where he made and repaired reins and headstalls, saddle bags, pack saddles and panniers for local ranchers and outfitters.
In 1954 Milton married fellow nurse, a spitfire Canadian, Dorothy Chaput. Dorothy’s work-hard play-hard personality would interject just the right amount of spice into their marriage. The couple began their life’s journey in Ft. Pierce, Florida, before moving to Astoria, Oregon. In 1961 the family traveled to Craig, Colorado where Milton returned to his love for the ranch life. After 17 years in Colorado and eight children later, the family moved to Priest River, Idaho, where Milton spent 20 years practicing as a nurse anesthetist. He spent his later years in Grangeville, Idaho, raising horses, ranching, and working in his leather shop.
Milton is survived by Dorothy, his wife of 63 years at the family home; his sisters, Gloria Henneke, of Seagrove, N.C., and Pauline Dubreuil, of Panama City Beach, Fla.; brother, Leland, of Knoxville, Md. ; his children: Jeffery, of Boise, Idaho, Richard, of Nazareth, Pa., Patricia, of San Rafael, Calif., Kevin, of Priest River, Idaho, Lynne, of Camas, Wash., Donald, of Spokane, Wash., Brian, of Boise, James of, Anatone, Wash.; 18 grandchildren and 13 great grandchildren.
He was laid to rest in the Grangeville cemetery with full military honors on Jan. 27, 2018. Arrangements were under the direction of Blackmer Funeral Home of Grangeville.
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