Dean Johnson Obituary - Cowsmo

Dean Johnson Obituary

Everyone at Cowsmo would like to send our condolences to the family and friends of Dean.

Former President of the Pennsylvania Holstein Association, Dean Andrew Johnson, 62, of Warren, PA died Thursday, April 30 after a lengthy illness. He was born on March 5, 1958 in Warren, PA. He was the son of Donald R. Johnson and the late Jacqueline Kibbey Johnson.

Dean was a 1976 graduate of Warren Area High School where he played football and was on the wrestling team. He received an associate degree from Alfred State University and then went on to receive a Bachelor of Science degree in Dairy Science from Virginia Tech where he attended on a wrestling scholarship. While at VA Tech, he met his future wife, Melinda Johnston, through the VA Tech Dairy Club and their love of the Holstein cow. Throughout his collegiate sports career he was named an All-American and Academic All-American in wrestling.

Following graduation, he and Melinda married in September 1981 in her hometown of Madison, Virginia before returning together to his home farm on Frantz Road in Warren County. Dean founded Hem-View Holsteins, “Hearty Holsteins from Heavenly Heights,” and then Dean and Melinda developed an internationally-known dairy cattle breeding and farming business. In 2013, Hem-View Farms became a Pennsylvania Century Farm honored for over 100 years of being a working farm in the same family.

Dean served at the state level of the Pennsylvania Holstein Association (PHA) from 1986 to 2004 in capacities from Treasurer to President. He also represented PHA several times as a delegate to the National Holstein Convention.

He and Melinda started and chaired the first PA Junior Holstein Association Convention in 1989, making Pennsylvania one of the first states to offer this agricultural-focused youth event. The couple, both renowned dairy judges themselves, coached the Warren County Youth Dairy Judging Teams.

For 37 years, Dean was the farm director and treasurer of the Warren County Conservation District helping to promote sustainable agricultural processes. In 2016, he was elected as a director of the Warren Electric Co-Op.

Dean served as a substitute teacher in the Warren County School District entertaining children by bringing live chickens and calves into the biology classroom. He also inspired students with his signature “word of the day.” He was a head football and wrestling coach at Sheffield, Beaty and Warren Area High schools. Dean and his brother, Dennis Johnson along with cousins Dan and Brad Johnson, ran the famous Johnsons’ Wrestling Camp each summer from during the 80’s and 90’s. In 2010, Dean was inducted into the Warren County Sports Hall of Fame.

A lifetime fixture at the Warren County Fair, Dean exhibiting cattle each year since the fair moved to the Pittsfield location. He went on to become a 4-H leader, mentor, and later “showed” in the draft horse arena. Dean with his loyal Belgian steed, Barney, were the delight of the county for 10 years in the Costume Class of the Silver Cup Horse Show. Within weeks of the fair, Dean chaired the Warren County Holstein Club Sale.

Dean was a member of Grace United Methodist Church where he was Lay Leader, Sunday School Teacher, and occasionally acted as substitute pastor.

Dean is survived by his wife of 38 years, Melinda Johnson of Warren and sons Harrison Taylor Johnson of Madrid, Spain; Marshall David Johnson of London, UK; and Colter Dean Johnson and his wife Paige Ryder Johnson of Warren. He is also survived by his brother Dennis Johnson and his wife Melissa Conn Johnson of Warren; a sister Diedra and her husband Tom Harkenrider of Ithaca, NY; along with several nieces, nephews, and cousins. He preceded in death by his mother and infant brother, David Albert Johnson.

Dean will always be remembered for his infectious laugh, ability to tell a great story and has been a mentor, teacher and friend to all.

Calling hours will be held as a drive-through celebration of his life at Hem-View Farms on Frantz Road, Warren, PA 16365 from 10 AM to 4 PM on Saturday May 9th. In lieu of flowers for those wishing to donate in Dean’s memory, please consider Warren County 4-H, Warren County Conversation District, Warren Athletics Fund and Grace United Methodist HOPES Fund.

Those wishing to make online condolences may do so by visiting,

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