Cover photo for Preston Lynn Johnson, Sr.'s Obituary
Preston Lynn Johnson, Sr. Profile Photo
1941 Preston 2020

Preston Lynn Johnson, Sr.

May 28, 1941 — September 25, 2020

Preston L. Johnson, Sr., a Christian man whose name was synonymous with reliability, service, expertise, and hospitality, went to be with the Lord unexpectantly at his late Arkadelphia, Arkansas residence, on Friday, September 25, 2020.  He was 79 years old.

A North Carolina native, born May 28, 1941, Preston was adopted at the age of four by his aunt, the late Mary Perry.  She relocated him to Arkadelphia following the death of his mother and her sister, Alice Johnson.  He graduated from the Peake High School in 1960 and advanced his education by completing a local technical curriculum emphasizing appliance repair.

Preston married the former Dorothy Browning on September 26, 1961.  To this union two children were born, Preston Jr and Laketha.  Dorothy and Preston remained friends following the end of their 30-year marriage.

A Christian since childhood, Preston accepted Christ’s Call to Discipleship and was baptized at the St. Paul A.M.E Church, where he was a lifelong member who consistently supported the church and its programs.  He once served as the congregation’s Chief Usher, and he consistently attended worship services and Sunday School throughout his lifetime. 

Preston was committed to serving his community.  He was a longtime firefighter for the City of Arkadelphia.  He consistently demonstrated an impeccable work ethic and was frequently commended for going beyond the call of duty to ensure the safety of Arkadelphia residents and fellow firefighters.   Post retirement, Preston continued serving his hometown and Central Arkansas by answering calls to repair appliances – especially washers and dryers—sometimes without accepting payment under dire circumstances.  People from all walks of life trusted his technical expertise and subscribed to the belief that he could fix most anything.

In his spare time, Preston enjoyed the company of his family and close friends.  He loved to entertain and often hosted gatherings of all types at his residence, routinely going to great lengths to ensure all in attendance had an enjoyable time.  He particularly loved the competition associated with adult games and the hilarious bragging rights stemming from his frequent wins.

Above all, Preston will be remembered for his unwavering commitment to fatherhood.  He took pride in providing the best for his children; he even traveled with them to expose them to learning opportunities and family familiarity. 

Besides his natural parents and adoptive mother, Preston was predeceased by one brother, Donald Smith, and four sisters, Patricia Smith, Betty Barnes, Bertha Hursey and Mary Wiley.

Among survivors are:  his children, who were his pride and joy, Preston (Beverly) Johnson, Jr., Laketha (Kevin) Middleton, along with adoptive children Monica (Louis) Hamilton and Dr. Odell Nickelberry; his grandchildren, each of whom he adored, Janey (Mike) Lewis, Javon Nash, Makayla Johnson, Jayden Nash and Kevin Middleton, Jr.; his beloved great-grandchildren Laiyah Lewis, Jaiden Lewis, and Jhase Lewis; his siblings, with whom he shared many talks and laughs, William “June” Smith, Gloria Davis, Virginia Johnson and Wilma Kay (Phenoid) McClure, along with a host of additional relatives and loved ones who will cherish his memory for years to come, including his special friend, Melanie Powell, and his best canine buddy, “Lucky.”

Public walk-thru visitation will be from 3 p.m. until 6 p.m. on Friday, October 2, 2020 at St. Paul A.M.E. Church, 1505 Caddo Street and Celebration of Life at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, October 3, 2020, at Rest Haven Memorial Gardens, 4647 Hwy 8 with Rev. T. W. Scott, officiating. Arrangement are coordinated by Williams Funeral Home.


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Service Schedule

Past Services

Public Visitation

Friday, October 2, 2020

3:00 - 6:00 pm (Central time)

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Graveside Service

Saturday, October 3, 2020

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

Rest Haven Memorial Gardens

4647 Pine St, Arkadelphia, AR 71923

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