In Memory

Chris Johnson - Class Of 1980

Chris Johnson passed away on April 4, 2009, due to pancreatic cancer.  Please see the obituary which his sister, Rene' ('79), wrote below.

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03/20/10 10:25 AM #1    

Rene Johnson (Johnson) (1979)

My little brother will have been gone one year this Easter Sunday. He died last April 4th from a year long battle against pancreatic cancer. I will try to attach the obituary I wrote.Rene'(Johnson)Richardson]

03/20/10 10:30 AM #2    

Rene Johnson (Johnson) (1979)

Christopher Johnson
December 10, 1962 - April 4, 2009

CALISTOGA - On April 4, 2009, Christopher Robert Johnson passed away peacefully, surrounded by friends and family after a courageous, year-long battle against pancreatic cancer. Born Dec. 10, 1962, in Reno, Nev., Chris is survived by his daughters, Jennifer and Emily, and their mother, Kristi, of Calistoga; parents, Greg and Patricia Johnson, of Auburn; and sister, Rene Marie (Johnson) Richardson. Chris is also survived by Ruth Souroujon and many close friends who were always there during this extremely challenging time in his life while he continued to pursue his dreams.

Chris graduated from Jesuit High School in Sacramento and received his degree in oenology from Fresno State. He has established significant respect in the winemaking community, bringing his experience from both coasts and around the world to his position as one of the top winemakers for Kendall-Jackson. Chris’ ambitions to better his surrounding community and world were apparent in many ways, especially in his positive relationships with those around him.
A memorial to celebrate his life will take place Saturday, April 11, at 1 p.m., at his home in Calistoga.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to pancreatic cancer research at UCSF or to the Selby Creek Restoration Project.
Arrangements by Morrison Funeral Chapel, Napa Valley, (707) 963-3536. Condolences may be written to the family at

Born: December 10, 1962
Death: April 4, 2009
Occupation: Winemaker

07/15/11 05:20 PM #3    

Duke Nishimura (1977)

FYI: June 2010 - Chris' ashes were released to be free in his favorite fishing spot along the Truckee River in a private family gathering in the end of June 2010.  May he rest in peace and may his family's pain of his loss heal to remember only the good times, his enthusiasm for life and his smile he freely shared with so many.  It was touching to hear of his attitude, that although his participation in the experimental medications for cancer may not work for him, Chris was comforted that his participation may help others that may follow behind him.  Bless Chris and his family.

04/04/12 07:19 PM #4    

Rene Johnson (Johnson) (1979)

RIP little brother. Another year has passed without you but I feel you in the most quiet of times. How aware I am of all your energy and spontaneity you possessed while walking on this earth not too long ago. Living here now, where you gave so much of yourself to making the world a better, more vibrant place, I am reminded how blessed I am to call you my brother.

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