WPCA Mourns The Passing Of Former Driver Ralph Johnson

Ralph Johnson (Inset) Driving The Charlie Lundseth Outfit At The 1948 Calgary Stampede
August 18, 1927 - May 30, 2017

The World Professional Chuckwagon Association was saddened by the passing of former competitor Ralph Johnson on Tuesday, May 30, 2017 from natural causes at the age of 89.

As the son of chuckwagon driver Sam Johnson, Ralph got his start as a barn hand for his father. Leonard played a key role when his father won the Calgary Stampede Rangeland Derby championship in 1939 driving the Gene Goettler outfit from DeWinton, Alberta. Ralph was one of the youngest chuckwagon drivers at the Calgary Stampede in 1943 when he drove Dave Crowchild's outfit in 1943. In 1948 he drove again for Charlie Lundseth. Ralph also outrode for some outfits in the 1940's.

Ralph had the privilege of being part of a cowboy lifestyle that included breaking horses with his dad at the old Butler place in Black Diamond. When his competitive career ended, Ralph was a lifelong fan of chuckwagon racing and never missed a race either by attending a few live races or tuning in on the radio broadcasts.

Ralph is survived by his children Tip (Chris), Kate Dyment, Sam (Myrla), and Nola (Steve) Thorburn. He was a loving grandfather to Travis, Breanna (Clayton), Noel (Daylene), Garth, Beth (Greg), Amy (Ian), Asa, Scott, Ben and Sam and great- grandfather to Rowan, Evan, Clifford and soon to be born, Lexi. Ralph is also survived by his brother Winston and sisters Ruth Hamilton and Pauline Thompson, as well as numerous nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his loving wife, Beulah, son- in-law Bill Dyment, granddaughter Cathryn, brothers Charlie, Gordon, and Leonard, and his sister Thelma Nichol.

A Celebration of Ralph's Life will be held at the Snodgrass Funeral Home, 200 Woodgate Road, Okotoks on Monday, June 5, 2017 at 1:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the charity of choice. To email condolences please visit Arrangements in Care of Snodgrass Funeral Home Okotoks 403-938-3111.

Ralph will be missed by all in the WPCA, and we extend our sincere condolences to the Johnson family.

Billy Melville

GMC 2017