January 13, 1950 ~ December 1, 2012
Ralph Johnson was a man of deep and abiding faith, who took a great deal of pride in the family that he loved so dearly. Beyond his immediate and extended family, he had a profound love of people. He was ever aware of those around him, even those who might be “invisible” to others. Where others might ask, “How are you?” in passing, never expecting or wanting an answer, Ralph stopped to listen, really listen, to what each person had to say. He genuinely cared about their stories, their concerns, their thoughts. He was always looking for a new friend, and he found value in everyone, whatever his or her walk of life. Ralph was a keen observer of people. He could read your expression or the look in your eyes, and intuitively perceive how you were; whether you needed a story to make you laugh, or a shoulder to cry on, he was there to meet your need. He looked for the best in every person he met.
Ralph was a life-long learner with a wide variety of interests and an insatiable curiosity. He earned a degree in Business from Dallas Baptist University, but beyond that had accumulated many hours of additional coursework, as he loved being in school and learning new things. He was very artistic and filled sketchbooks with his drawings. His favorite subjects, not surprisingly, were his children. He also loved music, and Ralph and Cheré shared that passion with one another and with their family. Singing, playing guitar, attending outdoor concerts, and listening to his favorite bands – all brought great joy to his life. Ralph was an avid sports fan and enthusiastically cheered the Texas Longhorns, Rangers baseball, and Stars hockey teams. He loved attending his son's sporting events in years past, and was a current fan of his grandson's athletic endeavors.
Ralph carved his career out of the communications industry, having worked for AT&T for the past 15 years, and prior to that, in the food service industry, working for William B. Reily and Quaker Foods. He could sell anything! His co-workers have spoken of his kind and encouraging words, big smile, and wonderful attitude.
Ralph is survived by his wife of 41 years, Cheré Graham Johnson, his children, Amanda Christiano and husband, Gene, his son, Ryan, and his daughter, Emily; his grandchildren, Graham and Quinn Christiano; his mother, Polly Johnson Brown; his brother, Victor and wife, Barbara; his sister, Debbie Mints and husband, Mike; numerous nieces and nephews, and dear friends. He was preceded in death by his father, Talmadge Johnson.
Memorial gifts may be made to the Muscular Dystrophy Association, 12655 North Central Expressway, Suite 230, Dallas Texas 75243, 972.480.0011. Ralph benefited from a Myasthenia Gravis clinic at UT Southwestern that is underwritten by MDA, and was extremely appreciative of the care he received there.