Sometimes in life you meet one of those ‘characters’ who makes a difference. Doug Johnson was one of those.
Saugeen Times called him ‘cub reporter’ because he would phone and leave a message if there was what he considered to be a newsworthy item. The message always began in the same way …
“This is your ‘cub reporter’ Doug Johnson, NO ‘t’ in Johnson!!”
More often than not, it would be the day before a special day such as ‘Commonwealth Day’ or ‘St. George’s Day’ or ‘Robbie Burns Day’ or ‘St. David’s Day’. Doug was always there to make sure I remembered and I am going to miss his keeping me on my toes.
On January 9th, (2016), many from the community and various organizations gathered to celebrate Doug’s 90th Birthday at the Walker House in Southampton and he also held an honour afforded to few when he became a Lifetime Member of Propeller Club.
For some 60 years, Doug was a Barbershop singer and he loved to sing anytime and anywhere. He was a volunteer in the community and was an active supporter of groups such as the Propeller Club, initiators of the Chantry Island Lighthouse Restoration Project. At a Propeller Club meeting, he persuaded three of his ‘cronies’, completing ‘The Fantastic Four’ to get up and together they spontaneously performed.
(L) Tom Marcotte, Bruce Chapman, Bob Trelford and … Doug Johnson
In Hamilton, where he had established a very successful trucking company, Doug met a young girl from the West – Beatrice (Bea) Belanger of Rosetown, Saskatchewan. She worked in the bank where Doug was a client and the rest, as they say, was history. The couple was married for more than 50 years and had three children.
Doug loved history of every kind and, as a life-long Mason and Shriner, authored ‘The History of Southampton’s Masonic Lodge’.
He was also an historian when it came to flags of the world and amassed one of the largest private collections found anywhere. He not only collected flags but knew the entire history of why the flags were the colours they were or how the symbols came to be chosen.
His love of history and flags of the world was renowned in Southampton and he was always mindful of the protocol surrounding flags as they flew. Doug knew more about flags and flag protocol than most people will ever know and, at 89, he continued to care for the flags at Pioneer Park in Southampton during the summer and looked after the flag at St. Paul’s Anglican Church.
Doug became a Southampton icon and, on a personal level, I will miss him …
Farewell, Cub Reporter Doug Johnson (no ‘t’)
Douglas Johnson passed away peacefully at Grey Bruce Health Services, Southampton on Saturday May 26, 2018. Doug Johnson, resident of Elgin Lodge, Port Elgin and formerly of Southampton in his 93rd year. Husband of the Late Beatrice Belanger Johnson. Loving and proud father of Mark and his wife Jane of Estevan, Saskatchewan, Sarah Elizabeth “Betsy” and her husband Joel Ippolito of Hamilton, and Edward and his wife Beverley of Southampton. Grandpa Doug will be missed by his grandchildren Cassandra, Sam, Aaron, Jacob, Joseph, Jessica, Dale, and Connor and by his great grand-children Sophia, Dillon, Luca, Sarah, and Carter. Predeceased by his parents Melville and Ethel Johnson.
Funeral Service details incomplete and will be posted at a later time.