Beloved Iron County community member unexpectedly dies, memorial celebration planned for Saturday

It has been only two weeks since beloved Amasa resident Chrissie Johnston unexpectedly died. She was only 51.
Published: Jun. 9, 2023 at 6:43 PM EDT
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AMASA, Mich. (WLUC) - An Iron County community is grieving the loss of an important and beloved community member. Those who knew and loved Amasa native Chrissie Johnston are planning a celebration of life in her honor.

It has been only two weeks since Johnston unexpectedly died. She was only 51. For many residents, the harsh reality has not set in.

“When you came into Amasa, when you thought of Amasa, you would think of Chrissie,” said Lindsey Lauridsen, a lifelong friend of Chrissie Johnston. “She was so well known. The void is just... we don’t have her anymore.”

Johnston had been a leading community member for more than four decades. Lauridsen said Johnston was active in planning community events, organizing summer baseball games and keeping the museum up to date.

“She was an inspiration,” Lauridsen said. “She was adventurous, she was an artist, she was affectionate and she was kind.”

Johnston is survived by her husband, Craig, two sons, two grandchildren, three sisters and many grieving friends.

“I don’t think I am [processing her death]. When you hear a certain song, you think of her,” Lauridsen said, pausing, then continuing. “That is hard. You see her in butterflies, because she was inspired by them, and feathers and she believed in all of that.”

Instead of a traditional funeral, Johnston’s family has decided to host a “Celebration of Life” at Amasa Park.

“She celebrated life every day,” Lauridsen said. “That is just who she was. I think we just need to do it here at the park. This is where she loved to be.”

The celebration will be Saturday in Amasa. Viewing begins at noon, with a service at 1 p.m. CT, followed by a celebration event.