Meet our marvelous, musical Marian! When we arrived at the Southside Theater Guild in Fairburn for our Arbor After Dark Trip to see The Odd Couple, we were given the red carpet treatment thanks to Mrs. Johnson. The theater staff and other guests all seemed to know Mrs. Johnson as a dear friend. Even the Mayor of Fairburn extended his gratitude for all she and her husband did for the town! Let’s get to know more about this beloved, influential resident of our senior living community in Peachtree City.
Mrs. Johnson’s Early Life
Born and raised in southern Illinois, Marian became a Georgia Peach after marrying Roger Johnson of Union City, Georgia. Mr. Johnson was serving in the Air Force when a friend set them up on a blind date to see Love Me Tender, starring Elvis Presley. In June 1957, Marian and Roger married in Edwardsville, Illinois, and moved to Fairburn, Georgia where they lived for 65 years. Marian had begun her higher education at Milliken College in Decatur, Illinois. After marrying and moving, she finished earning her music degree in piano at Georgia State.
The Johnson Legacy in Fairburn, GA
Mrs. Johnson was an active member of the Fairburn community, serving on the City Council for 13 years, and contributing to countless local musical and performing arts endeavors.
Once settled in Georgia, Mrs. Johnson quickly got involved with the local SAI music fraternity and other organizations. Her busy life involved raising four active children, teaching music at various schools, and participating with the PTA. Her family became members of Fairburn United Methodist Church where she was a member of the choir and played the organ and piano for over 45 years.
In 1973, Mrs. Johnson took her two youngest children to audition for the local production of Pinocchio. At the time, the productions were held in the Campbell High School gymnasium, so the lighting had to be set up. In her usual tenacious style, Mrs. Johnson was on the ladder hanging lights when her husband walked in and said “Get down from there! I don’t want to raise four kids on my own.”
Aside from climbing tall ladders, Mrs. Johnson found countless other ways to use her talents ad abilities to contribute to the local performing arts. Over the next 50 years, Mrs. Johnson won many awards for her directing, acting, and various contributions to the production of many plays. Always nearby, her husband-built sets, appeared on stage, and was the in-house “fixer”.
During the 1980s, Mrs. Johnson owned and operated The Music Store in Fairburn. Here, she taught piano and sold music, instruments, and other materials. The Southside Theatre Guild is now named “The Roger and Marian Johnson Playhouse” because of their long history of involvement and passionate contributions to music and the performing arts.
After Mr. Johnson retired, the couple enjoyed many cruises and travels around the world. They continued to be involved in Fairburn with civic work, church, and the theatre. The couple has four children and four grandchildren spread out living coast to coast: Washington D.C., South Carolina, California, and Costa Rica.
Mrs. Johnson Enjoys Our Senior Living Community in Peachtree City
In October 2022 Mrs. Johnson became a resident of our senior living community in Peachtree City after her husband passed away in September of that same year. Since moving into the Peachtree City neighborhood, she has gained new friends and joined both the choir and drama club. You can typically find her solving puzzles, chatting at a game table, enjoying happy hour, or playing the piano!