Obituary: Bill Raymond Johnston

Posted at 4:25 PM, Mar 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-17 18:25:57-04

Bill Raymond Johnston, 92, of Bozeman passed away Thursday, March 5, 2020. He was born May 8, 1927 at Shields, Kansas, to Basil and Marcella (Brenizer) Johnston.

He attended the first through eighth grade and his freshman year of high school in Kansas. In September 1941, he moved with his family to Bozeman and graduated high school (then Gallatin County High School) in 1945.

Bill started working at the Baxter Hotel as a bellhop, then as a night desk clerk while in high school. He was unable to pass his Navy or Army physicals and continued working at the Baxter, subsequently becoming Assistant Manager and Bookkeeper. He was then Office Manager and Bookkeeper at Bozeman Livestock Auction Company from 1957 to 1969, then was mostly self-employed in accounting and tax service.

Bill married Norma (Rasmussen) Ottman in 1952 and two years later they were fortunate to have a baby girl (their pride and joy) come into their life. After 38 ½ years of good life together, Norma died in March 1991.

Bill was a charter member and past-president of Bozeman Optimist Club, a past 52-year member of Bozeman Elk’s Lodge, a past member of Bozeman Lodge #18 AF&AM and Bozeman York Rite Bodies, and Gallatin Shrine Club where he was active in their endeavors.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Norma; his parents; his brother, David; and daughter, Patricia.

Survivors include his sister, Peggy Shular (Newton) of Great Falls, MT; special friends, Shirley of Hawley, MN, and Lee and Cathy Zwagerman of Bozeman; and nieces, nephews, and cousins.

At Bill’s request, cremation has taken place and no services will be held.

Arrangements are in the care of Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service. []