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Bellville Times 

Jimmie “Jimi” Benton Johnson

Jimmie Benton was born on June 10, 1934 in a farm town, Heavner, Okla.

She was the youngest of three girls, born to James and Grace Benton. Later in life, she started spelling her name, Jimi, because she thought it was more feminine and didn’t really enjoy having a “boy’s name”. 

Upon the death of their mother, Clara, Lee and Jimi were raised by their grandparents, Maude and Otto Windham. Jimi had wonderful memories of growing up on Grandma and Grandpa’s farm.

After the death of her grandparents, she finished high school and moved to Oklahoma City with her sister, Lee. They shared a little apartment over a drugstore and both worked for the telephone company.

It was in a church in Moore, Okla., where she met the love of her life, Leon Johnson.  The story has been told that Everett Leon, Leon’s father saw her singing in the choir, nudged his son and said, “She’s the one for you”.   They married in 1953.

Their firstborn was a girl, Roberta Malie, followed by their second daughter, Vicki Lynn and the youngest, a son, Michael Leon, who carried the middle name of his father and his grandfather. 

Jimi worked as a secretary during her life, but spent most of her time and energy taking care of her family, which was the most important thing in her life. She worked as a legal secretary for over twenty years for attorney, Kenneth Knox in Houston before retiring.

She was delighted to be “Grammy”, and very proud of all six of her grandchildren, listed below in birth order:  Jennifer Johnson Smalley, Karlie Brown Lester, Kyle Vance Brown, Cale Leon Johnson, Katie Lynn Webb and Rebekah Malie Brown.  She was happy to learn that Jennifer and Jason Smalley are expecting their first child, which will be Jimi and Leon’s first great grandchild!

She is survived by her husband, Leon Johnson, daughter and son-in-law Roberta and Robert Webb, daughter and son-in-law, Vicki and Kent Brown, son and daughter-in-law, Mike and Dana Johnson, her sister, Lee Gilbreath, and her six grandchildren.

Jimi Johnson was a beautiful, precious, devoted wife, mom and grammy and will be greatly missed, but we look forward to the day we will see her in Heaven!

The family humbly suggests that in lieu of flowers, anyone so inclined would perform an anonymous gesture of kindness for someone in need. 

The family will be hosting a private dinner to celebrate Jimi’s life.

Posted by Joy Neely


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