TUPELO – Sgt. Justin Daniel Johnson, 27, died suddenly Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2013, at his residence in Starkville. Justin was born July 27, 1986, in Baton Rouge, La., to Danny Johnson and Karen Keith Lampton.
He was a 2004 graduate of Tupelo High School. He continued his education at Mississippi State University where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Kinesiology in 2011. While at MSU, he was a member Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity and participated in intramural and fraternity sports. At MSU, he won the prestigious Sonny Montgomery Award.
He was inspired by his grandfather and father’s military service and joined the Mississippi National Guard. He served his country in the Mississippi National Guard with two deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan, both as part of the 288th Sapper Company out of Houston. His medals were numerous including the Iraq and Afghanistan Campaign medals, the Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Medal (twice), the Combat Action Medal (twice), the Army Commendation medal (twice) among others. He was cited several times by his military superiors for his bravery in combat. After his two deployments, Sgt. Johnson transferred to the U.S. Army Reserves.
In addition to his military service, Justin enjoyed fishing, all sports especially all things Mississippi State for he rarely missed football games in the fall, water sports, listening to music and spending time with his family and friends. He had recently returned to Mississippi State for further study toward his goal of obtaining a BSRN in nursing. A grateful community, state and nation salutes Sgt. Johnson for his courage and bravery in combat, in service to his community, state and nation.
A celebration of life service will be at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 28, 2013, in the Tupelo Chapel of Holland Funeral Directors with Dr. Forrest Sheffield officiating. Battle buddies from the 288th will reflect on his life. Burial will follow in Tupelo Memorial Park with full military honors.
Survivors include his father, LTC Dan K. Johnson, U.S. Army Reserves, retired, and his special friend, Hilda Roberts, both of Tupelo; his mother, Karen Marie Keith Lampton and her husband, Rick, of Abita Springs, La.; brother, Douglas Lampton, OCS, Quantico, Va.; sisters, Maggie Kimble and Bonnie Phillips; grandfather, Sonny Keith; grandmother, Mary Kay Keith; aunts, Kathy Chavez, Kay Cole and Cheryl Johnson Bowie (Shelton); cousins, Andrew Bowie (Cathleen), and Brian Bowie. He was preceded in death by his paternal grandparents, Judson Johnson and Lottie King Johnson.
Pallbearers will be Mississippi National Guard Soldiers. Honorary pallbearers will be members of the 288th Sapper Company, Houston and any military personnel.
Memorials may be sent to The Wounded Warriors Project (woundedwarriorproject.org) or to the Tupelo Veterans Park, Tupelo, MS.
Online condolences may be made to the family at hollandfuneraldirectors.com.