Joanne Margaret (Gabig) Johnson, 90, of Upper Burrell Township passed away peacefully at her home surrounded by her loving family on January 15, 2021. She was born on September 25, 1930 in Pittsburgh, PA to the late Francis Basil and Dorothy Ruth Collier Gabig.
She graduated from the Divine Providence Academy in 1948 and the University of Pittsburgh with a Bachelor of Science degree in Microbiology in 1952. After graduation, she worked as an airline stewardess for the Capital Airlines, and also worked as a bacteriologist at Presbyterian University Hospital. After her marriage, Joanne and her husband lived in various locations including Germany and Rochester, MN, finally settling on the farm in Upper Burrell Township. She later became the practice manager for her husband’s medical practice.
Joanne was an active board member of Peoples Library of New Kensington up until her death. She was also a board member of the Citizens General Hospital Foundation, a volunteer reading tutor for the Salvation Army Literacy Program, a volunteer ombudsman for the Westmoreland County Area Agency on Aging, a devoted member of the bible study group of Mt. St. Peter Parish, belonged to multiple book clubs, and held numerous positions for the Ladies Auxiliary of Citizens General Hospital.
A city gal at heart, she loved her home and life on the farm. She enjoyed reading, gardening, collecting antiques, attending her grandchildren’s academic and sporting events, watching the birds, and porch visits from her pet Donkey. She was known as Moo to all, a name coined by her grandchildren. Moo could be seen “cruising the strip” in her little red Volkswagen Beetle.
She is survived by her five children, Anna F. Walker, W. Kahle (Carol) Johnson Jr., DDS, Mary C. (Patrick) Connelly, Emily P. (George) Weston, and Katherine M. (Danny) Spiering; thirteen grandchildren, Lillyanna K. Walker, Kahley (Zack) M. Walker, Ross G. “Cubby” Walker IV, First Lt. Benjamin K. Johnson, Maura E. Johnson, Jude P. Connelly, Hilah K. (Korey) Connelly, Gavin R. (Peggy) Weston, Laurel A. (Perron) Weston, Wesley C. Weston, Ryan P. Weston, Emma M. Spiering, and Byler K. Spiering; six great grandchildren, Neeve, Fiona, Rowan, Sequoia, Dakota, and Laila; special cousin whom she considered to be a sister, Frances Resh Guthery; and numerous nieces and nephews.
In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband of 35 years, Walter Kahle Johnson, MD; grandson, Dylan P. Connelly; sister, Patricia Rubin; and brother, Lt. Col. Francis C. “Nook” Gabig.
Joanne was a vibrant and accomplished woman, who valued education. She was humble, accepting, and generous. Her family was everything to her.
Please consider a memorial donation in Memory of Moo to the Peoples Library of New Kensington.
Friends will be received from 2 to 4 & 6 to 8 PM on Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021 in the Ross G. Walker Funeral Home Ltd., 217 Freeport Road, New Kensington, where prayers of transfer will be held at 9:30 AM on Thursday, Jan. 21, followed by a funeral Mass at 10 AM in Mt. St. Peter Roman Catholic Church, 100 Freeport Road, New Kensington. Burial will follow in Greenwood Memorial Park, Lower Burrell.
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