On Saturday, 22 July 2017, a large contingent of ABR employees, past and present, attended Erin Johnson’s Celebration of Life in Chugiak, Alaska. It was a gorgeous sun-drenched day, and both the formal celebration ceremony and the gathering afterwards gave Erin’s family and friends an opportunity to remember her beautiful spirit and incredible life of love and accomplishment. Tears, hugs, and collective grieving were interspersed with music, dancing, laughter, and an overall sense that we all were privileged to have been part of Erin’s short but remarkable life.
Two quotes from Erin’s co-workers were read at the Celebration of Life because they embody how much Erin was loved and respected by her ABR family:
“I had the realization tonight that Erin was THE PERFECT FIELD PARTNER. A lot of people think they are cut out for backcountry field work, but once they get out there, they wilt. Erin was robust, capable, competent, and I trusted her with my life. Her presence in my life is a loss I will never fully recover from.”
“Erin was a wonderful field partner and a good friend….I soon learned that Erin was wise well beyond her years, mature, and very skilled. She was incredibly competent in the backcountry, had vast amounts of wilderness experience and knowledge, but yet, she was always so very humble. She definitely downplayed her badassery. She was very generous, smart, resourceful, relaxed, respectful, kind, loyal and funny.”
We are pleased to report that the Erin K. Johnson Memorial Fund is off to a strong start, and we encourage everyone to contribute to this science education memorial fund established by Erin’s family.
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