In Memory

Eric Johnson

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10/10/16 01:19 PM #1    

Antonette "Tina" Carini (Peterson)

Eric was the smartest student that I knew.  We were in the same kindergarten class at Fair Oaks School, attended Hoover and then Sequoia together.  His twin sister Julie is still my dear friend.  I remember in 8th grade at Hoover School Eric was the fastest runner in the school district.  He was funny, handsome and delighted in a little light sarcasm when it came to dealing with his sisters friends.   He left this world way too soon and he's been missed by his family and friends.

10/11/16 12:42 PM #2    

Angie Siemers (Fitzsimmons)

Tina, thanks for posting about Eric.  His passing is still a real delicate spot in my life; it was so tragic.  I knew Eric since he was two years old.  He and Julie lived around the corner and I practically lived at their house. Their house offered a serenity that was missing from mine, and it was my safe haven.

Yes, Eric was the smartest person we knew.  In fact, in 5th grade he was chosen to go to a school with a gifted program one day a week, but he refused.  So, they then asked me, apparently the second smartest person in school. It was way out of my comfort zone, but it was a special experience for me.

The last thing I remember about Eric is that I ran into him at Canada College in Redwood City when I was taking night classes to enrich my life and possibly eventually get a degree.  I was stumped what class would round out my experiences at that time, and he recommended Economics.  I would have never chose that.  It just sounded boring, but it was very enoyable and the professor was delightful!

Another memory that makes me laugh is when I was in 8th grade, the girls were so envious because I was over Eric's house every day and they thought he was so cute.  Having grown up with him all my life, I wasn't even aware of that.  He was just Julie's brother.

But after he died, my oldest sister said, "I always thought you two would get married some day."  I was so surprised.  It had never occured to me. But she thought it was a good match.  

I left California in 1975, but at some point had a visit with Julie on one of my trips back.  I was so surprised when she said, "I always thought you and my brother would get married some day!"

I thought, you too!  Boy, I had missed something. But that's what can happen when you grow up that close to someone; you don't even see anything like that.  And like Tina said, he left too soon - way too soon.  I wish he could have reached out to some of us and we could have helped him, but I wasn't even aware of what he was going through.

A very special person; very gentle and very caring.  Your presence has been missed Eric; I hope your soul found rest.

10/11/16 05:04 PM #3    

Jurgen M. Wolff

Eric, Bruce Behrens, Norm Sturdevant and I often used to hang out together at lunchtime. Often it turned into a contest to see who could make the sharpest comment but it was always in the spirit of fun and I had great respect and admiration for Eric. I was so sad to hear of his passing and although I'm sure it wouldn't have made any difference, I felt bad that I hadn't stayed in touch.

I was shocked to find via this site that Norm has passed away, too, and so have the other two guys I spent the most time with while at Sequoia, Horst Pochat and Stanley Ting. 'Carpe diem' seems more relevant all the time!

10/12/16 02:19 PM #4    

Larry Marks

Eric Johnson and I shared a few classes together, but  knew each other best as co-athletes on Sequoia's track team.  He was a sprinter and very successful in the sport.  I remember Eric being very intelligent, but never outspoken--a truly gentle person.  

When I learned about his early, untimely death, it gave me pause as a teacher/professor to continually remember that professionals responsible for young people need to be keenly aware of signs of unhappiness. Behavior can include depression, chronic drug abuse or something deeply personal.  Teachers are now obligated to report such matters when observed in students.  Still, the problems of bullying, hazing and other mistreatment in schools can go unreported.  We were lucky to be "children of the'60's." There were far fewer temptations back then and no internet/cell phone culture with its tools of harassment.  At Sequoia, don't we all recall when smoking and/or cutting class were the worst offenses?

When I saw the names of deceased students listed at the 50th anniversary reunion, I realized that some were only in their 20's-30's when they passed away.  Lives only partially lived....potential and futures never realized. Those who today remain close friends should be treasured.

10/12/16 05:12 PM #5    

Rick Hoag (Hoag)

Eric was one of those guys that you would remember.  

A kid that was really going to succeed!

I never had a class with Eric cuz' he was smart and I 'wasn't' but, we did meet on the track field for four years.

We were both sprinters.

Eric and Vince Tullo were the only two I could never beat.  

Eric was the fastest of the three. (We had one hell of a relay team-though!)

I had always thought that Eric would have been stellar college athlete.  He seemed to have all the "tools".

All American-Eric Johnson had a nice ring to it.  

Eric was always impeccably dressed.  Always so 'put together'...

Eric was special.  Brains and Brawn and a very, very nice person.

I was surprised at his early passing.

But, when I think of Eric I always think of 'happy times'.


11/12/16 08:19 PM #6    

Julie Johnson (Monda)

Not sure what I want to say, but I do know I want to say something.  So.....

Eric Robert Johnson - my brother, my twin, my best friend.  I think of him everyday - he is in my heart and part of my sou, even after 44 years. 

We always had the best time together.  We would polka down our driveway on  windy fall days and the leaves of the giant oak tree would fall on us.  He wasn't quite main stream and I love that about him. I remember him ripping off the cord on his prized KLH radio to hold the engine of his car together just long enough to make it home; I remember two years in a row he licked all the frosting off our dual birthday cakes; I remember him getting a ticket for driving too SLOW (!) on US 101, I remember how he loved Louie Armstrong  (he and Norm Sturdevant);  I remember how he held his glasses together with a bandaid, and I remember how he beat the tar out of me when I had the nerve to get on his forest green tricycle. Even though we had identical tricycles, he knew.

I wonder, wonder, wonder what he would be like today and ache over the missed time with him in our lives.  If my son looks like anyone, he looks like Eric and I know he would have adored him just like the rest of us.

So, at times I look forward to meeting up with him again, hoping on the back of his motorcycle and tooling off down the road alongside James Dean and Che Guevera!  Now that makes me smile.

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