Sharon Chappell Johnson passed away at Baylor Medical Center Dallas on Oct. 26, 2020, just four days before her 78th birthday, having lost a three-week battle with COVID-19. The family appreciates the efforts of the care providers who stood beside her and fought for her.
Sharon was the daughter of Maxwell White Chappell and Effie Elaine Fahr Chappell. She was one of three siblings, including her sister Maxine Elaine Chappell Bradley and brother, Terry Chappell. Of course, she was the brat younger sister who grew to cherish, communicate and love her sister Maxine and her irascible, real Navy hero, and husband Weldon E. Bradley – USN Retired, and whom she kept close after her sister’s passing.
Her father was a cabinet maker and country Baptist preacher, so she grew up a “preacher's kid” and all that brings. Sharon had a great competitive desire; from that she maintained excellent high school academics, made the Bryan Adams Drill Team (Preachers’ kids weren’t supposed to really do this), and since the age of 13 was assigned the responsibility of maintaining the house and cooking supper while her mother went to work. Once Sharon graduated from Bryan Adams, she got a job and bought her first car, without her dad’s input, which was a monumental event.
Acquiring her husband, Ronnie B., she took her high school typing and shorthand and became an accomplished legal secretary at the most respected Law Firm in Waco, being among the first to conquer automated computer typing.
Of course, there, that was the first-born child, Andrew Barrett Johnson, and all the decorating, curtains, room painting, and back to work.
After school, came a beautiful daughter, Shannon Kristine Johnson, more painting, decorating, sewing from hoards of pattern books, study and material decisions. There has never been a wall that should be bare or couldn’t be improved with paint!
The journey to Waxahachie began in 1969, where she made friends amongst workers at Burleson Honey, became interactive in Bridge Club and a work fraternity Beta Sigma Phi. Having arrived at the beginnings of Gingerbread Trail she immersed herself in numerous civic activities. She participated in antique shows for many years and is a long Canton First Monday addict.
Of course, our third child, Jeffrey Scott Johnson was added and a fourth, Matthew Alan Johnson. There were always school lunches, clothes washing, school trips, dance recitals, sports events and babies in her arms. Even with all her family responsibilities, she always devoted time to create countless needle-work projects. If it hangs or sits, it needs needlework. Her and her dear friend Gail Larkin, loved sharing their passion for needlework with others.
Sharon was a long-time member of the Junior Service League ad worked with her dear friend, Susan Hastings, to compile, edit and publish the first Waxahachie Junior Service League Cookbook. For years she was a member of a close-knit Bridge Club, as well as a Supper Club that her and Ron enjoyed together.
Time for her delayed education. Starting at Dallas County Community College, she then earned a scholarship to SMU and a degree in Art History at the age of 56, including a five-month study abroad of museums and cathedrals in Paris. Of course, it all was focused on her ultimate creation, her home, her children, and less than perfect partner, Ronnie B.
Most recently, she was an active member of the Gardner’s Limited, the Heirloom Club, and several Book Clubs.
Her “busy” season was ahead of her, in preparing her shop Effie’s Daughter at The Dove’s Nest in Waxahachie, and her home for the Holiday Season. She loved all things Christmas, college football, her cat Theo, and her most monumental creations, her four children – Andy, Shannon, Jeff, Matt, 13 grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.
Oh, along the way, she acquired her partner, husband, and less-than-perfect assistant of 56 years, Ron B. Johnson; who she met when she was 9 years old.
At her heart she was always “the preacher's kid” who wanted to live in a lovely world and be loved. As with most of us it was the success and growth of her children. The joy of her home on all occasions, but especially the holidays. Coffee with her friends, her brother-in-law, and her cat Theo that defined the slowing years that ended too soon. There were still projects to be done. A life well lived.
Published on October 29, 2020