James B. Johnson

James B. Johnson, PhD

July 30, 1941 – August 16, 2018

Retired Political Science Professor at UNO.  Survived by wife, Bev; children: Joel (Joy), Matthew, Amy Ray (Joel), and Jennifer Butler; grandchildren: Matthew, Jasanye, Mila, Zachary, Hannah, and Ava; siblings: Kathryn Miller (Dennis), Bill, and Dick (Maxx).

The family will receive friends on Sunday, August 19th from 5pm to 7pm at the West Center Chapel, followed by a Time of Sharing at 7pm.  MASS OF CHRISTIAN BURIAL: Monday, August 20th at 11:30am at St. Bernard Catholic Church, 3601 N. 65th St.  Family Burial.  Memorials are suggested to Holy Family Door Ministry.



  • Karen Todd Posted August 18, 2018 7:40 am

    My sincerest condolences to the family of Jim.

  • Cindy Edwards Posted August 18, 2018 10:18 am

    I’m so sorry for your loss.
    I know that God will find ways to comfort you in these days of sadness.
    I’m praying for you and your family.

  • Charles Kotan Posted August 18, 2018 11:22 am

    Jim is my favorite cousin. As the youngest of four, he was nearest my age, so at family gatherings I paid more attention to him than “the big kids”. What an amazing man he grew into! I was always proud to mention my cousin the Professor. I was thrilled when he and Bev married, and was proud to be allowed to drive his Hudson and their kids one night, while I was still a kid myself. Not too surprising, Jim loved turning wrenches – mostly on VW and Hudsons. He rebuilt a VW wagon motor for me, which we have discursed a few times over the decades. If you know Jim, you know his infectious laugh. Is a great sense of humor a sign of a brilliant mind? Jim makes me think so. I will miss seeing him, and will carry a sharp memory of hanging out in his garage, surrounded by VW and Hudson and plenty of parts. We send love to his wonderful family who have a life of lessons and love to remember. Gone but never forgotten. See ya next time, Cuz.

  • LINDA B MCENERNY Posted August 18, 2018 5:48 pm

    So wishing I could be there – to celebrate the life of this wonderful man. May the joys of remembering help heal the pain of loss.

  • Mary (Halgard) Flores Posted August 18, 2018 6:49 pm

    Growing up a block away from the Johnsons, I spent more time there than at home. Their door was always open and hearts full of love. Jim is probably who gave me my love of VWs. Though, I must admit, I was terrified as a small child if I sat in the front of the bus. I was always sure we were going to run into the car in front of us. It was the only car I rode in that didn’t have a front end. But then Jim would break out in his famous clapping at a stop. You couldn’t be worried around that. My love and prayers go out to you all – Amy, Joel, Matt, Jenny and Bev. Truly, you were like family to me. May you find comfort during this time of sadness in the many beautiful memories. You provided me with a great example of a family that loves and fights for each other.

  • Rod Smith Posted August 19, 2018 12:30 pm

    Sorry to hear of Jim’s passing. Jim was my undergrad professor ’73-74 and my thesis advisor ’74-’76. Jim was a great teacher and friend. I have often thought of him through the years. God bless you and your family.

  • Pat Becker Posted August 19, 2018 2:26 pm

    Bev I am so sorry for your loss. I will be praying for you and your family!

  • Jody Neathery-Castro Posted August 19, 2018 3:11 pm

    His family at UNO will miss Jim deeply. He was known for his twinkly smile, infectious laugh, Lincoln-esque beard, and generous spirit. I was fortunate to be hired by the political science department in 1998 and to work with Jim as my first department chair. He was a pragmatic and good-natured leader, and he and Bev welcomed me as family. He taught me to have patience with our students, who may be dealing with struggles we may not understand; that department meetings should remain short, and that midday naps can be important for mental health. Our department gatherings will not be the same without this sweet man.

  • Charlie and Sharon Harris Posted August 19, 2018 4:16 pm

    Jim’s brilliant mind will be missed. He was a great Charter Member in our IA/Ne Hudson Club. We will miss Jim’s smile and willing ways to always be willing to help with any project. Even singing with the Hudsonaires . He really was a special friend and will be missed. Our love, thoughts and prayers are with you Bev. and all of your family. May God comfort you in this your time of sorrow.

  • Nicole Andersen Posted August 19, 2018 4:40 pm

    Bev – my heart is with you. I am so sorry for your loss. I cannot make it tonight, but will try to be there tomorrow to pay my respects to you and your family.

  • Mindi Soldatenkov Posted August 19, 2018 4:58 pm

    Bev–I’m sorry for your loss. I’m praying for heart-healing strength in the most difficult time. My thoughts are prayers are with you.

  • Richard D. Brown Posted August 20, 2018 7:32 am


    Our condolences at this most difficult time. He–like you–was a strong proponent of education, and the social sciences. His many UNO graduates are the best testimonials to his work!

    Executive Secretary
    Nebraska State Council for the Social Studies

  • Helen Branigan Posted August 20, 2018 2:01 pm

    So sorry to hear about your Brother Kathy and Dennis…..My Thoughts and Prayers are with You both and all the families….

  • Gordon Brostrom Posted September 15, 2018 12:27 pm

    This is really heartbreaking. I’ve known Jim since high school at North. During his freshman year at Columbia he showed me and my roommate Bob Carlson around New York City for a weekend. I’ve lived away from Omaha since graduation from North but seeing Jim at our Class of ’59 reunions was always one of the highlights of my returns. I always looked for Jim. His enthusiasm was so infectious and I always felt better having spent some time around him. He will be missed! Rest in Peace, Jim!

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