Quentin "Q. J." Devere Johnston, 77, of O'Neill, died Thursday, March 16, 2023 at Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital in Omaha.
Visitation was held Tuesday, March 21, 2023 at Biglin's Mortuary in O'Neill with a prayer service.
Funeral services were held Wednesday, March 22, 2023 at Faith Community Church in O'Neill. Pastor Gary Binder officiated.
Memorials may be made to the family for future designation.
Quentin was born on April 20, 1945, the firstborn to Wesley and Pearle (Rosenberry) Johnston in Stromsburg. The family moved a lot as Wesley was a salesman.Quentin lived in Stromsburg, Lincoln and Central City. Stories were heard about how meticulous Quentin was in lining up his toy soldiers, and immediately noticing when someone would try to sneak an even slight move of one of them. Quentin's Mom had a lot to handle with five children and an often-absent husband. Quentin and his brothers Jim and Jerry ran the streets in every town they lived in. As the eldest child, Quentin did his share of trying to keep the younger kids in line, to no avail much of the time. Quentin graduated from North Platte High School in 1963.
Nancy Dahlgren worked at a classic A&W in North Platte with the car hops and actually liked a friend of Quentin's, but he did notice she was cute and eventually won her over. The two had a long-distance relationship when Quentin's family moved to O'Neill and Nancy still had a year of high school left. Quentin's car traveled many miles between O'Neill and North Platte until Nancy graduated in May of 1964. Quentin married Nancy on a sweltering day on July 5, 1964, and they welcomed a daughter and two sons to their union Michelle, Jeffery and David.
Quentin loved his family fiercely. He truly understood ‘in sickness and in health,' as he cheerfully dedicated years of caring for wife Nancy, through years of her illness. Meanwhile he persevered through years of his own heart disease with his well-known brand of stubborn tenacity. Even in his final months he was dedicated to spending time with his family, getting to know his wife's twin brother better, working hard in his rehab after a lower leg amputation and quickly winning over medical staff with his calm and peace through it all.
Quentin was very proud in dedicating four days a week, in the last four years, to his workouts at Anytime Fitness. He loved winning over everyone there and earning his way to their ‘Wall of Fame' each month. Quentin also served as head of his church's Missions Committee with a passion for helping those who spread the good news of the gospel all over the world. He also loved spending his Wednesday evenings with his brothers learning the arts of knife making and bead work, as well as being part of the Upper Missouri Muzzle Loaders Club and sitting around the campfire. Quentin also had a love for vintage cars and delighted in his classic red Plymouth Valiant he calls Little Red. Two of his great-nieces loved rides with him in it during their summer visits.
Quentin was retired after years of working as a consummate salesman in varying forms, including sewing machines, vacuum cleaners, insurance, furniture and antiques. He got to enjoy working alongside family and his wife Nancy, mainly in O'Neill and North Platte. Just before retirement he enjoyed a part-time stint as a DJ at KGRD and at the O'Neill Police Department office.
To anyone he met he would smile and say, “You can call me Q.J.” To those who loved him he was Dad, Daddio, Pa, Gramps, Papa Q, Grandpa Q, Q.J., and Quincy. He was a man radiating the love and grace of Jesus to all he knew.
Quentin is survived by three children Michelle “Shelly” (Rodney) White of Fremont, Jeffrey (friend Cindy) Johnston of Spencer and David (Stephanie) Johnston of Isabel, SD; eight grandchildren Ashley (Brian) Book of Denver, CO, Jacob (Brittany) Schultz of Omaha, Brandon White of Olathe, KS, Tuck (Ally) Johnston of Fayetteville, AK, Arissa Johnston of Marshall, MN, Elliyah Johnston of Bridgewater, SD, Ethan Johnston of Spearfish, SD, and Emma Johnston of Isabel, SD; nine great-grandchildren Lorelai, Talan, Grayson, Angel, June, Charlie, Noah, Soren and Clara; one brother Jim (Lee) Johnston; one sister Twila (Clayton) Strong; brothers- and sisters-in-law; as well as numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, wife Nancy Johnston in 2016, one brother Jerry Johnston, one sister Rebecca “Becky” Tooker, one niece Daphne Strong and one nephew Jared Strong.
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