Betty Marie Johnson, age 88, of Helena, Montana, formerly of Butte, Montana, and Washington, passed away on January 3, 2022. Betty Marie was born June 28, 1933, in Snohomish, Washington to Melvin Daniel Lowery and Anna Christine Hammer Lowery. She was the youngest of their 5 children – 3 daughters and 2 sons. The family lived on some acreage outside of town near Little Bear Creek. Betty liked to tell tales of when she was a teenager, sneaking out to go dancing and having to walk the long way home after dark. She always loved to dance. Her brother, Mel, also told stories of carrying water home from the creek.
Betty attended school at Cathcart Elementary and Snohomish High School. However, hard times fell on the family which led to some brief travel for work picking crops and making produce boxes in Eastern Washington and California. Snohomish was always their home, so the family returned as soon as possible, where her father found work as a bricklayer. Tragedy struck when Melvin died near the age of 50 which led to young Mel dropping out of high school to provide for the family. With the oldest daughters grown and gone, Betty left school as well to work at her first job at Woolworths Drug in Seattle.
Betty married her first husband, Dale Heitman, and their marriage resulted in her first son, Kenneth.
Later, Betty married the love of her life, Dell Byron Johnson, and together they had three children, Ronald, Randal, and Terrie Marie. Betty was a devoted mother and homemaker. Family was the most important thing in her life, and she cherished every moment of it. This inevitably led to her being a doting Grandmother to her 14 grandchildren.
Another page turned on Betty’s life when she dedicated herself and was baptized as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses during the month of April, 2000. She was an active member of her congregation in Granite Falls, WA and spent many years preaching and teaching the Kingdom message.
The next adventure came in 2006 when she moved to Butte, Montana, with her son, Randal, and his family. She loved having the mountains and beautiful creations all around her. Her favorite activities were spontaneous drives with friends far out to the country to find old homesteads, marvel at animals, and share Bible truths with whoever she met.
On the surface, Betty was a classic, sweet grandmother. She gave everything she had to family. Betty loved tending to her garden, serving big meals, baking all kinds of treats, sewing beautiful quilts, playing card games, and reading her Bible daily. But once you got to know her a little bit, you saw that her sweet self had a feisty side. She would play tricks on her friends, tease her grandkids, take a peek at her opponent’s cards, and taunt dogs that barked at her.
Betty was loved by all who met her and in turn she showed loved to all whom she met. She always put the needs of others, especially those of her family, ahead of herself. She set the example of forgiving freely, showing hospitality, and never taking oneself too seriously. Betty will be remembered for her kind spirit as well as her sense of humor.
Betty is preceded in death by her parents, Melvin and Anna Lowery, and her siblings, Jean, Mel, and Richard. She is survived by her sister, Margie Barker; sister-in-law, Pam Lowery; children, Kenny Heitman, and his wife, Marcy, Ron Johnson, and his wife, Kathy, Randy Johnson, and Terrie Marie Craven; 14 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
A memorial service will be held over zoom at 1pm on Saturday, January 15th but you may connect beginning at 12:30 pm. Please contact Marcy Heitman at firstname.lastname@example.org for log in link and information. Please visit below to offer the family a condolence, share a memory of Betty, or for updated service information. Axelson Funeral and Cremation Services is privileged to care for Betty and her family.