This is a copy of the eulogy I wrote and read at the funeral:
IN LOVING MEMORY OF JAMES J. JOHNSON
January 19, 1975 - August 2, 2002
I sat down to think of exactly what to say to honor James and express just how much he meant to us all, but finding just the right words and thoughts is impossible because there is just so much to say about someone so special.
James was a beautiful person in every sense of the word. He was a blessing to all who knew him. He touched so many lives in so many different ways because he was a true, genuine soul. He was so kind, caring, gentle and sincere. It truly amazed me to see so many wonderful qualities in one person. I knew from the first time that we met that he was like no one that I had ever known and I thanked God so many times for blessing my life with someone so special. He held me close and loved me in ways I that I have never felt from another person. He taught me so much about life and about love, lessons that changed my life and I will carry with me always. He cared so much for those that he held close and he always made them feel like they had a friend. I believe that James was a true gift from God, not just to myself, but to all who knew him. I could search my whole life and 5 lifetimes after that and never find another person like James. He made us laugh, he made us love, he made think and he made us enjoy life. James always tried to make me understand the importance of life and how important it was to live life to its fullest like he always tried to do. He also told me to cherish the ones that you love because you never know what tomorrow holds and just like always he was right. I hope we all hear his message now and realize just how much it means to truly cherish those that we love and forget the small things that have no comparison to what is most important. His love and his memory run strong through me as I hope and pray it does for all of you.
It seems so unfair when a tragedy like this happens and God takes such a wonderful person like James from our lives, but in his eyes he hasnt. Now James is with God so he can keep him close and James can watch and protect us all like he always tried to do in life. Through us he will live in our thoughts and our memories and in our hearts he will always stay. Please keep him close and never forget his blessing on this earth.
And James . I will never forget our time together. You mean the world to me. Thank you for the best years of my life. I will love you forever. You will always be my Pooh Bear, my best friend, my love and my life. May God keep and protect you until we meet again.