Orletha May (Holzapfel) Johnson obituary

The family of Orletha May (Holzapfel) Johnson share she has been released from her earthly bonds to be at home with Christ on Jan. 14, 2021.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, private services will be held. Burial at Highland Cemetery will follow. A celebration of Orletha’s life will occur at a later date.  In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Alan B. Johnson trust sent c/o Lamb-Roberts-Price Funeral Home, P.O. Box 14, Ottawa, KS 66067. Condolences may be sent to the family through www.lamb-roberts.com.

Orletha was born on June 8, 1942, to George W. Holzapfel and Leta E. (Shepard) Holzapfel in Concordia, Kansas, as the second child of four. During her youth, her family lived in north central Kansas in Delphos, Glasco, and Miltonvale. They moved to Ottawa in 1954. She graduated from Ursuline Academy, Paola, Kansas, in May 1961.

She married Emil E. Johnson on Nov. 9, 1962. Three children were born to this union; Alan Johnson, Julie (Johnson) Zule, and Laurie (Johnson) Folsom.

She worked as a nurse’s aide before becoming a homemaker when her children were born. After her husband became ill and their children were still at home, she worked at Bendix King Radio (Honeywell) for more than 25 years until her retirement.

Orletha, also known as “Aunt May” to many family and friends, was a selfless caregiver. She was a lifelong member of Faith Lutheran Church where she served by providing meals to others, quilting and as church board secretary. She belonged to neighborhood organizations when her children were small.

After retirement, she enjoyed time with her children and grandchildren who brought her joy.

She is survived by three children and their partners; Colleen Maslak, Duane Zule, and Ernie Folsom; four grandchildren, Matthew Zule  and his fiance, Noelle Prideaux; Zachary Zule  and his fiance, Rebecca Nowlan; Ashton Folsom and her fiance, Remington Walters; and Renna Folsom; her brother, LaVern Holzapfel; sister, Rose Laster; and many nephews and nieces including Cloe Everhart who she viewed as an additional daughter.

She was preceded in death by her parents and sister, Opal Boone.

Published on January 18, 2021