|Birth: ||Jan. 11, 1917|
|Death: ||Feb. 27, 2007|
Elmer Hunter Johnson was born on January 11, 1917 in Lukens (near Cedar Key in Levy County), Florida, a small town that no longer exists.
His parents were Katie Frances DuBose Johnson (1894-1952) and John Victor Johnson (born in 1881 as "Johan Vicktor Johansson Bäckman" in Finland into a Swedish-Finn family). Victor enlisted with the Åland Island Mercantile Marine at the age of 18. He was the ship's carpenter, first mate and constable during his six years of service. He immigrated to the USA at Ship Island, Mississippi in 1905.
When Elmer was born, Victor was the foreman at the Tilghman Cypress Company in Lukens, near Cedar Key, a coastal community located on the Gulf of Mexico.
They moved to Sumner around 1920, where Victor was the foreman at the Cummer and Sons Sawmill. According to the 1920 census, three men boarded with them, presumably to help with expenses.
In 1923 the entire mill moved its operations from Lukens to Bridge End (which was later renamed Osceola) in Seminole County, Florida. Victor was the foreman of the Osceola Cypress Mill. A large house on the St. John's River was built for Victor and his family. The family moved to Groveland (Lake County), where Victor was the foreman of the pine mill. Elmer enjoyed recounting that his earliest memory was here, a memory of a bucket brigade to save the mill when it was on fire.
The family moved to Sanford, Florida around 1924. Elmer graduated from Seminole High School in 1934 and attended the University of Florida, where he majored in engineering. His university education was interrupted when he enlisted in the US Navy to serve country in WWII.
Elmer met his future wife when he was stationed at the Brooklyn Navy Yard with the U.S. Navy in New York City. Betty Malvina Beeler was born on October 22, 1916 in Chicago, Illinois, the daughter of Amanda Gall Beeler (1889 - 1981) and John Allen Beeler (1867 - 1945), a prominent engineer and consultant in transit modernization plans in large cities throughout the country.
Betty was working at CBS in New York City when they met. Elmer and Betty married in White Plains, New York on June 6, 1945.
Elmer had two brief tours of duty in Europe immediately after their wedding. World War II was coming to an end. Elmer was offshore Southampton, England on VE Day. Shortly before the Allied Victory in Japan was announced, he received military orders to report to the Pacific. On his way there, he was advised in San Francisco that he could report to the Pacific (Guam) or be stationed in Miami, Florida. He opted for the latter. In Miami, he was the "Officer in Charge" of the Naval Receiving Station until he was released from active service in October 1945.
Housing and jobs were scarce after the war. He and Betty moved to Sanford in 1945. Elmer re-enrolled at the University of Florida (UF) in Gainesville in 1947. They lived in FlaVet I (student housing) from 1947 to 1953. He served as a Navy Communications Officer during the Korean War from September 1950 to May 1, 1952. He was based in Sasebo, Japan, where he was promoted to Lieutenant.
After Elmer graduated from UF in 1953 (Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering), he, Betty and their daughter moved to Hialeah. He worked for the Florida Power and Light (FPL) Company in Miami until his retirement at the age of 63. Elmer worked for several different FPL divisions (Engineering, New Business and Power Sales). He was active in many community organizations and civic groups in the Miami area.
Betty became ill and died on October 13, 1991 in Lake Placid, Florida, on their way home from a visit with their daughter and her family. Elmer returned to Sanford in 1993. After a long, productive, and very independent life, Elmer died at the age of 90 on February 27, 2007.
John Victor Johnson (1881 - 1960)
Katie Frances DuBose Johnson (1894 - 1952)
Betty Malvina Beeler Johnson (1916 - 1991)*
Edna Victorine Johnson (1908 - 1933)**
Martha Windla Johnson DeWitt (1910 - 2000)**
John Victor Johnson (1912 - 1989)**
Elmer Hunter Johnson (1917 - 2007)
Alice Lucille Johnson Rayburn (1920 - 2012)*
Old Providence Cemetery
Maintained by: Sandra Johnson Witt
Originally Created by: Donna McPherson
Record added: Feb 02, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 24317988