Jane Earle Johnson

Jane Earle Johnson

July 19, 2023, 77, Goldsboro —

Jane Earle Johnson passed away on July 19, 2023. She is survived by her two children, Elizabeth Preston (Timothy) and Nathan Johnson; two stepsons, Robert Johnson, and Matthew Johnson; and two grandchildren, Samuel Preston and Oliver Preston. She is preceded in death by her parents and brother, George Earle.

Jane was born in Queens, NY on January 27, 1946, to Finas and Jewel Earle. Finas had served in World War II; he reenlisted in the Army at the end of the war and made the military his career. As a result, though her family has deep roots in Kentucky and North Carolina, Jane spent her childhood on Army posts and attended military schools. When asked, she called herself an Army brat who “grew up everywhere, but spent the most time in Nuremberg, Germany.” Jane began college at the University of Maryland in Munich while her family was posted in Germany and completed her undergraduate degree in history at the University of Kentucky. She continued her studies, eventually earning a master’s degree from UK and a Ph.D. from Saint Louis University.

Jane met and married J. Thomas Johnson during those years. Tom brought two boys to the marriage, and the couple had two more children together. Jane was a professor at the University of Pikeville in Kentucky and the University of Mount Olive in North Carolina before leaving higher education to teach in public high schools. She taught in several schools but spent most of her public school career at Eastern Wayne High School in Goldsboro, NC.

Jane was an inveterate teacher and no question had a simple answer. She loved her students, who called her “Dr. Johnson” or “Dr. J,” but never ever “Mrs. Johnson.” Her education, her curiosity, and her love of learning were the things that Jane valued most about herself. Jane adored her children, her dogs, good coffee, naps, and her garden.

A memorial service will be held at First Presbyterian Church in Goldsboro on Thursday, July 27, at 5:00 p.m. 

In lieu of flowers, donations in honor of Jane’s life can be made to The Humane Society (www.humanesociety.org), Steele Memorial Library in Mount Olive, NC, or an organization of your choice.

Online condolences may be expressed at www.seymourfuneralhome.com.