Casey Benjamin Johnson
March 28, 1980 – September 12, 2023
Last updated 9/26/2023 at 10:32am
Casey Johnson was born March 28, 1980 in Salem, Oregon, raised in Sisters, (graduating from Sisters High School in 1998), and died in Ventura, California, September 12, 2023. He is the oldest child of Vern and Betsy Johnson, who still reside in Sisters.
Casey worked at Black Butte Ranch as a lifeguard while attending high school and Western Oregon State, where he studied law enforcement. He was also in Boy Scouts, where he achieved the rank of Eagle Scout, and was on the staff at Camp Pioneer several summers. He also served as a Deschutes County Sheriff's Deputy Bike Cadet in Sisters. His plans to join the military and goal to become a police officer were derailed by a back injury that occurred his junior year in high school, either in football or downhill ski racing.
He moved to Ventura in 2005 to take a position in quality operations with the Sabroso Company, putting him on a new career path. He continued working and advancing in several different companies, and eventually became the plant manager at AgriFrost. Casey's talents as a problem solver, organizer, and his self-taught skills in mechanical and electrical engineering increased his employer's productivity and profits, while ensuring employee safety; he took care of his employees and they loved him. He won a national award for the increased production for one of the companies.
The move to California also created an opportunity to meet another life changing force, the love of his life, Shanon Rice. Their childhood interests and activities, as well as their post high school and college adventures, ran almost parallel. They were married September 4, 2016 in a beautiful sunset ceremony at the Ventura Botanical Gardens.
Casey was a quiet, humble, kind, selfless, and caring man who worked and played hard, and interjected his subtle and quirky sense of humor whenever possible. He was into the outdoors, riding his bike and Segway, adventure and travel. As a Boy Scout he went to Camp Philmont in 1994, and spent 10 days hiking 100 miles with other scouts and his father. He took Spanish classes in high school and college, lived in Mexico for two semesters in a language immersion program, and became proficient in Spanish. He found great joy in camping and loved to demonstrate his Boy Scout skills to Shanon and their friends. He enjoyed being around water, swimming, boating, and fishing. He loved his time coming back to his family home in Sisters and helping his father work on cars. On a lark, he found a cheap airline ticket online and headed to Chile the next day for a week.
Casey used his otherwise quiet demeanor to cover his absolute delight playing practical jokes on others, especially Shanon. While they were dating, he showed up to a Halloween party she was hosting, unrecognizable, with his head shaved into an old-man male pattern baldness, wearing an oversized old suit from a thrift store. His shenanigans usually were done in such a subtle way that those around him would turn to find him fiddling with his phone with a twinkle in his eyes and a smile on his face.
In many ways he was like a 12-year-old kid. He became addicted to the Ventura County Fair and would attend for about an hour every day, riding on all of the most awesome rides. He hated tattoos, but would get a henna tattoo each day, usually on his face or neck, often saving them from one day to the next to create a giant work of art; he delighted in the reaction he got, especially from Shanon and his friends. Shanon encouraged him with a surprise birthday party at a Chuck E. Cheese, where he played all the games, won lots of prizes, and went into the Ticket Blaster to get more tickets.
He cherished the time he had with his grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. He held to family traditions such as not opening gifts till the actual day of the event (birthday, Christmas, etc.), popcorn, marionberry pie, Spam sandwiches, and helping put together toys for Christmas and birthdays.
Casey is survived by his wife (Shanon), parents (Vern and Betsy), sister (Molly), numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, and nephews, who all loved him and miss him very much.
Informal celebration of life gatherings will be held in Ventura at 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday, October 1, at the Ventura Museum and in Sisters at 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday, October 22, at Aspen Lakes Golf Course. Please bring your favorite memories, stories, and photos to share as we honor Casey.
Casey is forever a Boy Scout! Donations can be made as a memorial to Casey here: https://fundraise.givesmart.com/f/2llm/n?vid=10r8mm Camp Pioneer, Cascade Council. Please add "donation to Camp Pioneer" in the Acknowledgement/Name/ Address box.