On June 28th, 2011 Dale R. Johnson died in a freak accident while working with an excavator to pull out a tree stump in his front yard. He was alone; the cause of death determined by medical professionals was a blunt trauma to the head and chest that broke his neck – he died instantly. Although we had recently divorced after fifteen years of marriage , we remained close and he was an integral part of my life. A celebration of life service will be held in Portland, Oregon on July 17th at 4pm – if you’d like to attend please contact me directly for details.
I have avoided speaking about my personal life in my business because I hadn’t felt it was appropriate, but I now feel compelled to share so many things I wished I’d said before. Dale was my biggest supporter, he helped establish my photography career and worked tirelessly behind the scenes. He had the patience of a saint, and was kind, spirited, adventurous, funny, creative and had an amazing capacity to care for others and love. He helped me focus on what was really important in life; beyond all the professional accolades or successes what I most cherish is the love he showed unconditionally and his ability to live life to the fullest. While I was driven and endlessly active, he balanced my energy with his calmness and ability to find peace in the stillness; he was my rock and he enabled me to become what I am today. I will forever be grateful to him for all has done and his spirit will be deeply missed by so many people whose lives he touched profoundly.
We kept a journal of our personal journey – our round the world trip from Oct 2000 to December 2001, which I’d recently archived in this blog (see archive entries by those dates). Below is a summary of a life well lived, details of moments behind the photographs I haven’t shared with many before now.