Obituary: Doreen Johnson

The funeral of former dog breeder, Doreen Ann Johnson, was held at St Andrew’s Church, Isleham, on November 1. Mrs Johnson (nee Smith) died on October 24 following a long illness. She was 78.

Born at The Golden Boar in Freckenham, she attended the primary school before going to Mildenhall senior and lived most of her early years in the village. She was taught to play the piano and regularly played the organ at Freckenham church. On leaving school, and until she married Bill Johnson in 1953, she worked at Stebbings shoe shop in Mildenhall.

Together with her husband she had a smallholding in Barcham Road, Soham, and for many years grew flowers for the London markets. In 2002 the couple moved to Isleham.

She loved animals and always had dogs, initially beagles and corgis. It was, however, the arrival from Devon, of a Yorkshire terrier puppy called Cheeky Faced Jen that started the famous Lyndoney line. She bred and showed several champions, the most special of which were her first, Champion Lyndoney Timothy Tuppence and her last Champion Lyndoney Ambassador. She also judged, both in England and abroad, and was honoured to judge Yorkshire Terriers at Crufts in 2001.

Her other passion was tennis. She attended all of the major events in this country and followed every tournament throughout the world on television.

Always determined, loyal and strong, she loved life and had a rapport with every age group with many friends.

When she was diagnosed with cancer in 2006, she was told she had a year to 18 months. However, the doctors failed to factor in her determination to live life to the full and she did not let her illness stop her from enjoying life.

She loved her family and leaves a daughter, Lynn, and two grandsons, Richard and Jonathan.

The service was conducted by the Rev Mike Banyard with a tribute given by Lynn and a poem read by family friend Eric Murfett.

Family mourners were: Lynn and Michael Clarke, Jonathan Clarke, Richard Clarke and Hannah Gertig, Keith and Myfi Neal, Gary Neal (rep Darren), Posy and Nigel How, and Bernard and Hermione How.

Other mourners were: Mr and Mrs B How (Brian How), Jean and Bill Johnson (Mr and Mrs Glen Brooks), Gladys Peacock, Sheila Radford (Tony), Mrs Reader, Susan Prevost, Betty Reeve, Brenda Collen (Christopher Collen), Glenda Bailey (Pamela), Ray and Enid Sheldrick, Betty Watson, Mr and Mrs P Flatt, Mr C I Ellwood (Mrs V P Ellwood), Jean Henry, Linda Pooley, Irene Rolfe, John Dempey, Glenda Murrell, Julian Murrell, Jane Burge, Den Diver (Clive, Sue and family), Alan and Pat Webber, Joyce Quinn, Ivy Rutterford, Jill Murfett (Mrs E Murfett), Eileen Pick, Ann and Andrew Fleet, Robert and Margaret Ashwell (Rosemary Garfitt, Richard and Tania Bramley), Roy Murfett, Geoff How, Dorothy Piper, Jackie and Anthony Ward, Roy Clarke (family), Pat and Bill Mitchell, Caroline and Denny Smith, Osman Sameja, Zakis and Jim Collins, Ann Wilkes-Kendall, Mr and Mrs Keeler (Mr and Mrs Wells), Babs Hitchings (Shirley and Gordon Davis), Sonia and Paul Newman (James), Jemma Murfett (Richard), Joanne Bodoin, Joyce Markwell, Anthony Word, John How, Eric and Vera Murfett, Dianna Rich, Tracey Clark, Mr and Mrs Roy Clarke, Terry and Jeanette Malkin, Carol Purdy, Doreen Reader, Jane Johnston, Jan and Stephen Bullman, Leslie How and Astrid, David Eavis (Sarah), Sue Fisher, Anthony Morbey, Neil Stittle, Mr and Mrs T Rutterford, John and Margaret Wells, David Forsythe, Jean Clarke, Ann Clarke, Harry Seal (family), Michelle Martin (Soham Lodge Nursing), Katherine Kyte (High Street Luncheon Club), Beryl Neal (Trevor), Mrs Waters, Des and Jean How, and Fiona Cunnington.