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Obituary - William C. Johns

Article Date: 
23 March, 2012 (All day)

(Ret.) Major William Carl “Bill” Johns reported for “Heavenly Duty” at 0245 hours, on Monday, 19 March 2012. Bill was born on 29 April 1935 in Carey, Idaho to Carl Emeris Johns and Louise Wilde Johns, and is the oldest of five children.  Bill was a beloved elder brother to his siblings.  From an early age he set an example with his strong work ethic, enthusiasm, and devotion to his Heavenly Father.

Bill attended school in Jerome and Twin Falls, Idaho, graduating from Twin Falls High School in 1953.  He graduated from Idaho State College with a Bachelor’s degree in Pharmacy in 1957 and from the University of Michigan with a Master’s degree in Hospital Pharmacy in 1966. While at Idaho State, he met Merlene Kelly at a Lambda Delta Sigma activity and eventually “pinned” her to be his eternal sweetheart.  They were married in the Idaho Falls LDS Temple on August 31, 1956. 

While attending college, Bill was in a tank company in the National Guard as well as in Army ROTC.  He went on active duty in the Army Medical Service Corps in 1957 and served for the next 20 years stationed in numerous states as well as in Korea and Germany.  The first half of Bill’s service was as a medical supply officer in field hospitals.  During the remaining 10 years he was Chief of Pharmacy at several Army hospitals.  He was also the Pharmacy Consultant to the Surgeon General, Europe.

Bill and Merlene are the parents of seven children; five daughters and two sons.  When retiring from the military in 1977, Bill and Merlene settled in Pocatello, Idaho, where they lived for the next 33 years.  During this time, Bill continued his pharmacy career in the retail setting.  He was a president of the Southeast Idaho Pharmaceutical Association (SEIPA), president of the Idaho State Pharmaceutical Association (ISPA), and also belonged to the APhA and ASHP and still held an active pharmacy license.  In January 2011, Bill and Merlene moved to Morgan, Utah.  They appreciate the welcome they have received and are grateful for friendships developed during this time.

Bill was raised with a deep love of country and faith in God.  He was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, serving in many capacities such as Ward Clerk, Activities Chairman, twice as Bishop, Stake Executive Secretary and Stake High Council.  He also enjoyed serving the community, and was a member of the Pocatello Sunrise Lions Club for over 20 years, serving on the local, district, and council levels.  He was also a courier for the Idaho Eye Bank. 

Bill had a sharp mind and an amazing capacity for trivia.  He loved listening to and performing music; singing in several choirs and playing the violin and mandolin.  He also enjoyed many hours fishing with his family.  Bill never met a stranger and conversed with everyone he met.  He is a dearly loved father, who was supportive in any way he was needed, and is the best grandpa ever. 

He is survived by his wife, Merlene; seven children, Jeanine Ballard, Carla (Brad) Amon, Robert (Sherrie) Johns, Kimberly (David) Wynn, ShariLyn (Rick) Payne, Willinda (Grant) Briggs, and Richard (Tasha) Johns; 26 grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren.  He is also survived by his mother, Louise; two sisters, Patricia (Ken) Spahr and Lola (Ken) Riley; and one brother, Benjamin (Kay) Johns.  He is preceded in death by his father, Carl Emeris Johns and his brother Sidney Marvin Johns.  

Funeral services will be held on Saturday, March 24 at 2 p.m. at the Valleyview Ward, 1433 Gwen Drive, Pocatello Idaho.  Viewings will be held Friday, March 23 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Colonial Funeral Home, 2005 S. 4th Avenue, Pocatello and again at the church on Saturday one hour prior to services.  A viewing will also be held in Morgan, Utah on Thursday, March 22 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Walker Mortuary, 45 West 200 North. 

Interment, Mountain View Cemetery, Pocatello, Idaho.

Send condolences to the family at www.walker-mortuary.com.