Ric Johnston Class of 66

Profile Updated: April 17, 2019
Residing In: Pearland, TX USA
Spouse/Partner: Sheryl Vick
Occupation: Retired (Cancer Research Data Analysis)
Children: Reese (1992)
Military Service: Army  
Yes! Attending Reunion

Ric's Latest Interactions

Hide Comments
Jul
27
Jul 27, 2021 at 4:33 AM
Jul 27, 2020 at 4:33 AM
Jan 03, 2020 at 4:33 PM

Somebody posted this on Classmates.com, apparently today, "Charles R. Hansen, Chuck to his friends, died the afternoon of March 26, 2013 after a 17 1/2 month battle with brain cancer."

Jul 27, 2019 at 4:33 AM
Jun 03, 2019 at 12:33 PM

I am skeptical about those "off-campus meetings" Vice-Principal Lowell Wiggins was always coming back from.  Mike lived with his mom across the street from school, in a little complex of a half-dozen single-story brick apartments (I believe it's still there, sandwiched between two giant complexes), and we -- Bob, too -- used to sneak over there for a cigarette at lunch time (this is where I learned you could light a smoke off an electric stove), and almost every time we were running interference from Mr. Wiggins.  English teacher Kenn Myers called him the Principal of Vice and I think at that point in his very long career (he was at Highline when my grandmother was there in the school's first year of existence) he was a roving guard stationed outside, looking for escapees (at the 1965 earthquake I was the first person outside the building and Mr. Wiggins was already there).

May 27, 2019 at 8:33 PM

Thanks for the picture, Greg.  It’s how I remember Mike, as I last saw him, when we were relatively young, with long hair without a hint of gray.  I didn’t know him as particularly athletic (he used to unleash a withering glare when people -- adults, most often -- looked as his height and asked him if he played basketball), mostly because I met him in debate class when he was a junior and I was a sophomore and when Brent Collette was the most awesome debater around.  The following year the debate topic was nuclear weapons and Mike had become the awesome one.  Once an opponent used the Sword of Damocles argument -- that everybody was all screwed up because they lived under an existential threat -- and Mike opened his cross-examination with, “You grew up in the nuclear age; what would you say your chief personality defects are?”  We formed a three-man team, with Bob Kearns and myself, and Mike devised a trick play -- you didn’t think you could do that in debate, did you? -- that almost always won for us.  We tied for the SPSL state tournament slot and won a tie-breaking debate with a hapless Franklin Pierce duo, but we finished out of the money at the state tournament at WSU, thrashed in the second round by an Ephrata team that I think had God on their side.

Mike drove a green Mercury of about 1951 vintage (now it’s a classic); not all the windows actually closed (perhaps there was no glass in a couple of them), and it was generally just a bit more disreputable than it looked. I remember one time he was driving us all up to a tournament at Seattle Pacific; it was snowing that Saturday morning and as he drove up my dad looked at Mike’s car, looked at the six inches of snow on the ground, and pulled me aside, saying, “Call me if you make it.”

Aside from being perhaps the smartest person that most of us will ever meet, Mike was really the happiest person ever, approaching every phase of his life with plain relish and enthusiasm, from Highline, to debate, to Pizza Pete, to the University, to UCLA, (and, later, after he and I had lost touch), to cab driving, to computers, to retirement in Winthrop.  That enthusiasm was infectious and it brought us all into his orbit; he was the best, and he left too soon.