Animal lover, beloved grandmother
Claremont resident Sandy Johnson died peacefully on May 25, 2017. She was 66.
Ms. Johnson was born Sandra Rae Suter on August 22, 1950 in Prineville, Oregon. She was the second child of Raymond Earl and Lela Louise (Lynam) Suter and shared the birth date with her father.
Her father lost his life in an automobile accident days before her fifth birthday. Ms. Johnson’s mother remarried while in Oregon before moving the family to the Pomona Valley in 1964 to enroll in nursing school.
Ms. Johnson attended Ganesha High School in Pomona for her freshman year, then transferred to Upland High for her remaining three years, graduating in 1968. She married James Blacksher on July 3, 1968, just weeks after graduation. The couple had two children, Jeff, in 1969, and John in 1972. They were married for 10 years. She met Ken Johnson soon after her divorce and they dated for many years before marrying in 1990.
Ms. Johnson went to work for GTE in 1978. She worked for the company for 25 years, meeting many of her closest friends in life along the way. She retired from GTE, which was then known as Verizon, in 2003. She was retired for less than two years before going back to work part-time for the city of Pomona, where she worked in the human resources department until her diagnosis earlier this year.
Ms. Johnson resided at the Mountain Village Senior Apartments in Claremont and worked a couple of days a week in the office there at “the old folks home,” as she liked to call it. She was a very social person and continued to work after retirement because she loved people.
When she wasn’t working, she spent time with her grandkids, helping to pick them up and volunteering at their school and attending their activities and sporting events. She was helpful and kind, always smiling and a friend to whomever she met, her family shared. She was dearly loved and will be sorely missed.
She is survived by her husband Ken Johnson; son and daughter-in-law, Jeff and Jenny Blacksher of Claremont; her son John Blacksher of Portland, Oregon; her granddaughter and great-granddaughter Kayla and Khloie Vasquez; her grandchildren Molly, Evan and Shane Blacksher; and her brother Pat Suter of Oregon.
The family would like to thank VNA Hospice of Southern California, as well as the staff at Leisure Living of Claremont for their wonderful care and support.
A memorial service will be held Friday, June 16 at 2 p.m. at St. Marks Historic Chapel at the Chaffey Communities Cultural Center, 525 W. 18th St., Upland.
Sandy was a lifelong pet owner and animal lover. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations may be made to Priceless Pet Rescue in Claremont at pricelesspetrescue.org or (909) 203-3695.