My father’s obituary


James Gillis Johanneson passed away January 4th, 2017, in Ste. Rose du Lac. He was 70 years old.

Jim (“JJ” to his students and friends, “Jimmy Danger” to his sons-in-law—ask them why!) was born in 1946 in Winnipegosis, MB, to George and Jeanne (née Gilliam) Johanneson. He married Theresa Hrushowy in 1970, and they had three children: Patrick, Nicola, and Susan.

In his late teens Jim worked up north, in Hay River, NWT. When he returned south he took teacher training. He taught Industrial Arts (ie, shop) and Computer Science classes at Ste. Rose Collegiate Institute (later Ste. Rose School) for over 25 years, and then, later, taught shop in Lac Brochet, MB. He was a well-loved teacher, the favourite of many students. He had an approachable, down-to-earth manner with everyone, students and fellow teachers alike.

In addition to being a shop teacher, he was a carpenter and all-around handyman. If something needed fixing—plumbing, electrical, insulation, you name it—he could generally fix it. He undertook several major renovation projects at home, and also did a lot of work at his kids’ houses. (Ask Nicola about the bathroom mirror, or Patrick about the siding and deck.)

Jim served on the Manitoba Teachers’ Society executive for years. He was also a dedicated volunteer with Westman Media, creating tons of content for the local Access TV channel.

He loved to read, and the house in Ste. Rose was full of bookshelves overflowing with science-fiction and war novels. He enjoyed camping, and in summer 1981 some of the extended family made a month-long convoy trip across western Canada to Whitehorse, Yukon.

Jim loved kids. He would often go for walks with his children and (later) grandchildren, pausing to check the level of the river or teach them to skip stones at the beach.

In the last part of his life, Jim was afflicted with dementia, and he lived the last six years in the Dr. Gendreau Personal Care Home.

Jim is survived by his wife Terry; their children Patrick (Kathleen Kalberg), Nicola (Joël Parent), and Susan (Jeff Walden); grandchildren Julian, Isaac, Cedric, and Genevieve; brothers Brian (“Oscar” to all), George (Brenda), and Bill (Bonny); and his uncle Bill and aunt Phyllis Johanneson. He is predeceased by his parents George Sr. and Jeanne Johanneson, and his parents-in-law Nicholas and Regina Hrushowy.

Memorial donations may be made to:

A very special “thank you” to all the dedicated staff working at the Gendreau Home; thanks to you, we never had to worry about Jim’s well-being.