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Pete Johnson

October 7, 1942 - April 9, 2017





Peder “Pete” Cameron Johnson, devoted husband, loving father, and doting grandfather went home to his heavenly father on April 9, 2017, after a 10-month battle with cancer.

Pete was born in Grand Forks, North Dakota, on October 7, 1942. As a child, his family moved to Minot, North Dakota. Growing up there, Pete learned a strong work ethic and found a passion for working with his hands. He met his future wife, Marie Geil, at church and they were married on October 6, 1961.

He worked for the City of Minot and the City of Salem as an equipment operator before moving to sales.

Pete & Marie moved to Salem, Oregon in 1963. Their son, “Little” Pete, was born in 1968. As a family, they enjoyed camping, boating, motorcycle riding, and traveling. It was important to “Big” Pete to make a memory every day with his wife and son.

Pete’s hobbies included woodworking and showing his classic car, a convertible 1959 Ford Fairlane 500. Never idle, he often had a home improvement project going.

Pete made many friends throughout his life and often had them laughing with his stories. Once retired, Pete & Marie traveled extensively in their choice of RVs. Those trips provided him with many more stories to embellish.

Pete was preceded in death by his father, Sidney R. Johnson and his mother, A. Bernice Cameron Johnson, and niece, Lynn Zenor. Pete is survived by his sweetheart and best friend, Marie; son, Peder Cameron Johnson II; daughter-in-law, Tami Johnson; and his grandchildren Alyssa (Alex) Hitchcock, Amanda Johnson, and Anna Johnson. Pete is also survived by his three sisters, Leah Garcia; Linda (Robert) Leach; and Laurel Carnine; three nephews, and seven nieces.

The memorial service will be held on April 19, 2017 at 10 am at Salem First Christian Church, 685 Marion St. NE, Salem. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that contributions be made in Pete’s name to either the Wounded Warrior Project  https://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/  or The Independence Fund  http://independencefund.org/  .

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The long ago memories came rushing back in an instant when I heard of Peter's passing!  In 1981 at 27 I went to work for the city of Salem's paving crew. As the new young guy  on the crew you look around to figure out who's going to mistreat you! Right off Pete made me feel welcome!  Now Peter was a guy who was happy wherever. He was the biggest pranskster, jokster, basic cut up on the crew.  I'm surprised I wasn't fired cause of him. My wife and I became close friends with Pete and Marie. Almost every day in summers just before quiting time, Pete would say beer? We'd go to the tavern or someones house.  We'd go camping with them, crabbing on the coast. Wasn't anything that he wouldn't do for you. He was my big brother that always got me into trouble. There are many more stories to tell, some that should stay in my own memoryou, ha ha