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Born: Oct 09, 1914

Date of Passing: May 15, 2003

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JON SNORRI JOHNSON October 9, 1914 - May 15, 2003 On the afternoon of Thursday, May 15, 2003, in his 89th year, after a lengthy illness, our beloved husband, dad and afi passed away at the Arborg and District Health Centre. Born October 9, 1914 on the family farm homesteaded by his grandfather in 1902, Snorri, the first born son of Snaebjorn and Sigridur Johnson, lived on the family farm in the Arborg district his entire life. His schooling consisted of a mixture of years at the Vestri School in the Framnes district, the Ardal School in Arborg and part-time home tutoring. He continued to advance his learning through his great love of reading and endless thirst for knowledge. Snorri began working on the family farm at a very young age along with his younger brothers, Kristjan and Kjartan. In the early years, together with their father, they operated a mixed farm. In 1934 they began growing pedigreed cereal grain and forage seeds. Snorri enjoyed working with the various types of livestock until the early 1960s when the farming operation expanded seed production and the contracting with farmers of timothy and other forage seeds. Snorri along with Kristjan focused on managing the farming operation, but also was involved in the hardware store, which was first opened in 1953 and managed by Kjartan. Originally opened as a Macleods, Johnson & Sons, later joined the Home Hardware chain until it was sold in 1990. Throughout the 1960s and 1970s the seed business grew and in 1974 it was incorporated as S.S. Johnson Seeds Ltd. Snorri forged a strong relationship with area farmers, who produced seed for the company to process and market, and worked tirelessly at building the company to its present position of international success. He was a member of the Canadian Seed Growers Association and the Canadian Seed Trade Association. In 1990 Snorri and Kristjan were presented with the Robertson Associates Award by the Canadian Seed Growers Association for their contributions to Canadian agriculture. During the last 10 years Snorri continued to take great interest in the day-to-day operation of the family business. While his health permitted he continued to operate machinery during seeding and harvest. Snorri enjoyed taking long drives to "inspect the crops" and flying over Manitoba with Lorne to observe the progress of the growing crops. He also took great interest in the lives of those he held dear to his heart and enjoyed spending time with his favourite people. On June 17, 1948 Snorri married Gudny Jonasson, and next month they would have been married for 55 years. Together they lived and worked on the family farm and it was there that they raised their three children. Pride in his Icelandic heritage and a desire for more knowledge about his ancestral homeland led Snorri and Gudny to twice visit Iceland, in 1977 and 1998. There he visited both his mothers birthplace at Helgafell on Snaefellsnes and Fjoll, his fathers birthplace in Kelduhverfi, Nordur-Thingeyjarsysla. Snorri and Gudny also enjoyed a holiday in Europe in 1982. Snorri was predeceased by his parents; grandson, Andrew Neal Johnson Sproule; brothers-in-law (and their wives), Hermundur and Thora Jonasson, and Alli and Bjorg Laxdal. Snorri leaves a lifetime of special memories to be cherished by his wife Gudny; daughter Sigrid (Rob Sproule), grandchildren, Meghan, Michael, and Matthew; and sons, Brian and Lorne. He also leaves his two brothers, Kristjan (Kristin) and Kjartan (Valdina, Gudnys sister) and six nieces and nephews. A memorial service in celebration of Snorris life will be held on Wednesday, May 21 at 2:00 p.m. at the Ardal-Geysir Lutheran Church in Arborg with Pastor Trudy Sluth officiating. Interment to take place immediately following the service in the Arborg Community Cemetery. The family wishes to express heartfelt thanks to all those who had a part in Snorris health care, to his home care attendants Sheila, Sheryl and Judy, to Vangie and to Dr. Van Wyk and the staff at the Arborg and District Health Centre. Also special thanks to Valdina and Kjartan, for always being there, and to Joanne Johnson. Flowers are gratefully declined. If family and friends so desire, donations in Snorris memory may be made to the Ardal-Geysir Lutheran Church, Arborg, MB or to the Arborg District Health Centre. Goda nott elsku Snorri, pabbi og afi. Arborg (MacKenzie) Funeral Home in care of arrangements (1-800-467-0024).

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on May 20, 2003

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