Orrinne Lillian Oakland Johnson was born to Joseph and Lillian Oakland in Centerville, S.D. Dec. 10, 1936. The family moved to a farm northwest of Colfax on Otter Creek followed by a farm off 170 north of Norton Lutheran Church. Orrinne attended Norton Elementary school then high school in Colfax graduating in the class of 1955.
After high school she attended the University of Eau Claire with a degree in elementary education. She did her practice teaching at Boyceville Elementary School. When her practice teaching was completed, she was hired to a full-time position. Teaching there for three years, during that time she met Kenneth Johnson and started dating him which led to their marriage June 19 of 1960.
After their marriage they took teaching positions in the Owen-Withee School District. At this time their first child was born (Carl Johnson). They taught at Owen-Withee for five years when Kenneth accepted a teaching position in Menomonie School District where they had their second child (Geraldine Johnson). They built a house that Orrinne designed and built eight more houses that she designed for other families.
Orrinne moved on with her education and got a Master’s degree and then took a position as reading specialist in the School District of the Menomonie Area which she held for 23 years.
We loved to travel so in the summer we took our camper and traveled throughout the U.S. We traveled in every state before our oldest child graduated from high school. We did other traveling that included the west coast of Europe and around the Mediterranean and China.
Orrinne liked outdoor activities golf, walking, biking, down-hill skiing and boating. She was an artist. She would sketch and paint beautiful pictures in water colors. She sold a number of her paintings.
She loved her church ‘New Life Lutheran’ and was involved in church organizations which have become very supportive in her battle with Pancreatic Cancer. She also wanted to thank the medical staff that treated her and treated her with so much kind support.
Orrinne is survived by her husband, Kenneth; brother, David and his wife Karen; son, Carl his wife, Diana; daughter, Geraldine her husband, Jeff; five grandchildren, Joe, Sam, Andrew, Steven and Tasha; and five great-grandchildren, Jack, Lauren, Henry, Thomas and Aurora. Orrinne was a loving wife, a wonderful mother and grandmother, and a kind friend.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 29, at New Life Lutheran Church in Menomonie, with Pastor Roy Harrisville officiating. There will be visitation from 4 to 7 p.m. Friday at Olson Funeral Home in Menomonie and at the church one hour prior to the service on Saturday. Burial will be in Tiffany Cemetery in Boyceville.
To share a memory, please visit obituaries at www.olsonfuneral.com.