Ms. Rebecca Virginia “Dena” Johnson, daughter of the late Doc Johnson and Maude (Taylor-Younger) Johnson, was born November 15, 1937, second youngest of 12 children, in Uniontown, Pennsylvania. Born of a devote faith-filled mother, Dena was introduced to Christ at an early age being baptized on November 26, 1947. With a professed love for Jesus Christ, she and her family became members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints located in Pittsburgh, PA when they moved to the city in 1963. Although, sometimes, the world and work got in the way of regular church attendance, Dena was never too far from Christ. Up until her death, she regularly read from the Book of Mormon.
Although never married, Dena had six children whom she raised as a single mother. Her children grew up knowing her love, never without food, and always having a safe roof over their heads. It was not uncommon for Dena to regularly take in family or her children’s friends into her home, even with her limited means. She started working at Whiteman Nursing Home in 1990 where she worked the 2PM-11PM shift caring for the “old folk” and “senior citizens,” as she would call them. This job would become paramount in helping her accomplish her dream of purchasing h
own home, which she did in 1992 in the ever-sought-after neighborhood of Point Breeze in Pittsburgh. She would medically retire in 2010.
Dena was a spitfire, but her joyous spirit will forever remain in the lives of all who knew her. She quietly departed this life due to natural causes on Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at 7:35am at Kane Regional Center in McKeesport, PA. She was preceded in death by her brothers, Daniel Johnson, Paul Johnson, LeRoy Johnson, Raleigh Johnson, and Edward Johnson. As well as her sisters, Dorothy Hall, Lovelee Pitts, Alma English, Lilian Ware, and Viola Johnson.
Her life will forever be cherished in the lives of her only surviving sibling, Fannie Brown (age 86), her children: Karlyn Johnson, Sylvia (Dana) Booker, Terry Johnson, Keith (Kelly) Johnson, Sharee Johnson, all of Pittsburgh, PA and Karen (Samith) Lum of El Cajon, CA, 11 grandchildren, 7 great grandchildren, and a host of devoted nieces, nephews, cousi
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