Richard C. Johnson died Monday, Feb. 10, 2020, the day after he celebrated his 78th birthday with family gathered around.
Born in Brooklyn, he resided in Hazlet, Holmdel and Matawan.
Since 1967, Richard belonged to the Hazlet Fire. Co. #1, where he fought fires, spun the wheel at the fireman’s fair and formed lasting friendships. He attained the rank of captain. Three years ago, was recognized with an award for 50 years of service, for which he was very proud.
Richard began his working life as a printer, working mostly at Webcraft in New Brunswick. In later years he worked with wife, Rita, in managing the Irish Green & Union Blue gift shop in Red Bank, and other locations. The shop specialized in Irish imports as well as artwork and artifacts honoring the Irish Americans that served in the Union Army in the Civil War, known as the Fighting 69th. Richard contributed his deep knowledge of the Civil War, gleaned from books and battlefield visits, to tell the stories depicted in the dramatic prints in the shop. He became a talented framer, incorporating military memorabilia in his designs.
Richard and Rita were married for 54 years and raised four children. A diehard Mets fan, Richard never lost the faith. A doting grandpa, he loved rocking his baby grandchildren to sleep. He enjoyed cheering on his grandchildren’s sports teams.
Richard is predeceased by his parents, Sven and Frances Johnson, and his brother Barrett. He is survived by his loving wife Rita Johnson and his cherished children: Carl and wife Ana; Christina Johnson Draganoff and husband Drago; Swen Erik; and Teri Radosevich and husband Brad. Richard also leaves eight adoring grandchildren: Reily, Trevor, Daniel, Grace, Julia, Ava, Evan and Richard. He will be dearly missed by all who knew him.
Relatives and friends are invited Friday, Feb. 14, 2020 from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. at Day Funeral Home, 361 Maple Place, Keyport, NJ 07735. A fireman’s service will be offered at the evening visitation. To leave a condolence, please visit dayfuneralhome.com.