The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

February 27, 2013

Bert Thomas Johnston


DANVILLE — Bert Thomas Johnston, 86, of Danville, passed away at 9:15 p.m. Monday, Feb. 25, 2013, at Danville’s VA Illiana Health Care System.

He was born Aug. 20, 1926, in Grand Junction, Mich., the son of Bert and Helena (Williams) Johnston.

He married Dawn A. Davenport on Aug. 1, 1947, in Bloomingdale, Mich. She preceded him in death on Oct. 30, 1994.

They had two children, Jacqueline (Jim) Devenport and B. Thomas (Carol) Johnston. They survive.

He married Carol (Bahls) Toy on May 24, 1997, at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Danville. She survives.

Surviving him are his children; wife; one brother, Robert (Marilyn) Johnston; two brothers-in-law, Gene Bahls and Max Davenport; one sister-in-law, Vivian Johnston; one step-daughter, Kristin (Steve) Baumgartner; one stepson, Dr. Martin (Tracy) Toy; five grandchildren, Jason Schaafsma, Christopher (Brandy) Schaafsma, Jessica (Steve) Sherwood, Ashley (Levy) Stout and Nicole Johnston; step-grandchildren, Roxie Powell and Clint Powell; 10 great-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.

Bert was preceded in death by his parents and three brothers, Herbert, Leslie and Frederick Johnston.

Bert graduated from South Haven, Mich., high school and joined the U.S. Navy. He served during WWII and was discharged in 1946.

He attended Western Michigan University and graduated from the University of Michigan in 1953 with a degree in mechanical engineering. He worked for the Glenn L. Martin Co. on development of the B-57D aircraft in Baltimore, Md., and the development of the Titan ballistic missile in Denver, Colo. He later moved into marketing and served several companies in an executive position as sales manager and vice president of sales and marketing. He retired in 1993 from Pertec Computer Corp.

He served two terms as vice president of Immanuel Lutheran Church of Danville. He enjoyed family and friends, NASCAR racing (as a spectator) and flying radio controlled aircraft.

A Celebration of Bert’s Life will begin at 11 a.m. Friday, March 1, at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Danville with Pastor Michael Heidle officiating. Visitation will be 4-7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 28, at Sunset Funeral Home and Cremation Center, a Life Celebration Home, in Danville. Burial will be in Sunset Memorial Park in Albuquerque, N.M.

Memorials can be made in Bert’s name to Immanuel Lutheran Church. Please join Bert’s family in sharing photos, videos and memories of him through his Tribute Wall at

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