Melva Jean Johnson (nee Huseman) of Hartland, Wis., passed peacefully in her sleep at the age of 88 on Oct. 17, 2023. Melva was born Aug. 14, 1935, to Elmer and Flora (Nienke) Huseman at Kanopolis, Kan. She had just returned from a trip to her childhood home in Kansas to visit her brother, Virgil Huseman, sister-in-law Mary Jo and other dear family and places.
A strong student and musician, Melva Jean graduated from Ellsworth High School in 1953 and went on to complete a degree in dietetics at Kansas State University. In her last semester of college, she met Frank Johnson, her lab partner in microbiology. That summer she began a dietetics internship at Scripp’s Institute in La Jolla, Calif., and one year later, she and Frank married. Early married life took them to Chicago, Ill. and Evansville, Ind., along with two daughters, Kathy and Lori. From the early 1960s, the family lived in Brookfield, Wis. Frank and Melva moved to Wayne, N.J., in the late 1980s, and then back to Hartland, Wis., in 1994.
Our beautiful mom had so many interests and talents — music, cooking, quilting, cross-stich — and she did them all so well! But making family and friends feel loved and welcomed was what mattered most. Melva and Frank opened their hearts and homes (sometimes a tent!) to so many. Though Wisconsin was her home most of her life, her heart always held dear the people and pastures of Kansas.
She was preceded in death by her husband and parents. Surviving Melva are her two daughters, Kathy Johnson and Lori (Glenn) Hanon, and four grandchildren, Andrew (Kristen) Leef, Megen (Kevin) Johnson, Paul (Ryan) Hanon and Robert (Jessica) Hanon. She is also survived by nine great-grandchildren. Also surviving is her brother Virgil (Mary Jo) Huseman.
Visitation will be held on Saturday, Nov. 4, 2023, at Krause Funeral Home, 21600 Capitol Dr., Brookfield, Wis., at 10 a.m. A memorial service will be at 11 a.m., followed by a luncheon. Memorials to Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation are suggested in lieu of flowers, and sent in care of the funeral home.