Dr. Lowell B. Johnson

Dr. Lowell Benjamin Johnson, DVM, 90, passed away on Thursday, October 25th at Deerfield Retirement Community.  Lowell was born on September 29, 1928 on the family farm East of Laurens, Iowa to G.W.E. & Sylvia (Weeks) Johnson. He was the 5th of 6 siblings.

Lowell graduated from Laurens High School in 1946. He was very active in Vocal Music, Band, and the Orchestra. Played basketball, football, and was the Class President their Senior year.

Lowell enrolled in what is now Iowa State University Fall of 1946 partially due to a neighbor loaning him the $50.00 for tuition. Working his way thru ISU he studied Agronomy, was in ROTC,  sang in various choirs and barbershop quartets,  joined the Acacia Fraternity, and met his future bride Lois Jean Youngblood on a blind date Spring of their Freshmen year.

Lowell graduated in the Spring of 1950 with a BS in Agronomy and went to work for the State of Iowa. Late in 1950 the US Air Force called up Second Lieutenant Johnson. Before reporting, Lowell and Jean were married January 14, 1951 in Jefferson, Iowa.

After their Air Force years “Captain” Johnson returned to ISU living in Pammel Court and received his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree in 1959. During their “second tour” at ISU their son Kent was born and Lowell and Jean were House Parents of an ISU Home Management House.

Following Veterinary School graduation their second son Jay was born and they moved to Garner, Iowa where Doctor Johnson was a partner in a mixed animal practice. Garner is where the two boys were raised, where the family was active in the United Presbyterian Church, Community, and School activities, along with hosting three international exchange students. Lowell was at one time or another a School Board member, Lions and Rotary Club member, along with being a Volunteer Fireman for over 20 years.

During this time he enjoyed flying his Cherokee 6 out of North Iowa landing on the local grass strips visiting family and friends. He also joined his fishing buddies and sons on fishing trips to Minnesota and Canada.

During his mixed practice years Lowell was known for his special interest in small animals and the exotic species. Known to have treated birds of various feathers, big cats like tigers, he was also called upon to lasso in town deer and a black bear.

In 1982, with their two sons out on their own,  Doctor Johnson joined the USDA in Washington DC. He and Jean enjoyed their years in our Nation’s Capital but returned to Johnston, Iowa in 1989 and retired from the USDA in 1991. In 2005 Lowell and Jean became original residents of the Deerfield Retirement Community in Urbandale, Iowa. Their retirement years were spent traveling, being active in the Deerfield Community, taking advantage of what Central Iowa offered, supporting ISU and the Iowa State Fair, enjoying family gatherings and being involved with their Grandson Benjamin.

Doctor Johnson was a  Mason, Shriner, Chanter, and Jester. His Masonic involvement spanned over 50 years. Lowell had Lifetime memberships to the American Legion, American Veterinarian Medical Association, the Iowa Veterinarian Medical Association, and the Iowa State University Alumni Association which included Order of the Knoll.  He was also a member of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, and a strong supporter of all family activities.

Doctor Johnson was known as a gentle community minded individual with a fine tenor voice who was always willing to lend a helping hand. Lowell is survived by his wife Jean, sons Kent (Sara) & Jay (Sabrina) and their son Ben(Grandson), and two sister-in-law’s, Mary Johnson and Marilyn Johnson.

Doctor Johnson was preceded in death by his parents, sisters; Helen (Reuben) Chapman, Alice (Wendell) Simonson, brothers; Marvin Johnson, Charlie (Fran) Johnson, and Wendell Johnson. Also preceding him in death were his In-laws Lucian and Bernice Youngblood and brother and sister in-law Meryl (Aldora) Youngblood.

The family wishes to thank the wonderful caring staff at the Deerfield Retirement Community, and the Unity Point Hospice Team for all they have done for Lowell and the Johnson family. A CELEBRATION of LIFE will be held at a later date with internment at the Iowa Veterans Cemetery.




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