passed away July 28, 2013.
Lana Cheryl (Stoltenburg) Johnson was born on May 15, 1952 to Darwin and Fayme (Braun) Stoltenburg in Clear Lake. She attended Clear Lake Grade and High School and graduated in 1970. She enrolled at Northern State College in Aberdeen where she graduated with a bachelor of science in secondary education/theatre major in 1975. She then moved to Highmore where she taught drama from 1975-1976.
To further her studies in theater and voice, Lana moved to Minneapolis, Minn., where she performed in several plays and her career then led her to Los Angeles, Calif. where she taught voice lessons, performed in theatre, and also entertained as a mime. She wrote and performed a show called "Empower Your Life" and was the featured singer for several fundraisers. She also worked at the acclaimed Biltmore Hotel where she was a waitress and flower arranger.
Lana was united in marriage to Steven Jae (Rusty) Johnson on November 16, 1991, and they lived in Sherman Oaks, Calif. before moving to Big Bear Lake, CA, where they spent the last 14 years together.
During her life in Big Bear Lake, Lana dedicated her life to counseling high school students where her greatest joy was to offer them hope by inspiring them to believe in themselves and to work toward their goals and dreams. Lana received the prestigious Steven Mihaylo BBHS Education Foundation honor for her service to education, as well as the Operation Breakthrough "Making a Difference" award for working with youth.
Lana performed as an actress in a short documentary called "A Separate Life" and is a published author of "Don't You Know Who I Am."
Lana is lovingly remembered by her husband, Steven Jae Johnson of Big Bear Lake, Calif.; her mother Fayme Stoltenburg, Clear Lake; two sisters, Diana (Scott) Rehrig of Denver, Colo.; and Mary Jo Maher (Roger Genetzke); one brother, Michael (Karen) Stoltenburg of Brookings; many aunts and uncles; nieces and nephews, as well as all of her many students and friends.
She was preceded in death by her stepson Chad Johnson; her father Darwin Stoltenburg; two cousins, Barry Stoltenburg and Douglas Goens; and one uncle, Delbert Stoltenburg.
Lana loved to teach everyone about the importance of forgiveness and inspired everyone she met with her "never give up" spirit that will forever live in the hearts and minds of everyone she touched. Until that glorious day when we will all meet again, we will carry you with us each and every day.