“Centenarian Mother of Seven”
July 16, 1920 - September 24, 2020
Born in San Francisco to Polish Immigrants, a first generation American, Victoria grew up in San Francisco then moved to farms and the coast of California as a child. Her father was the lighthouse keeper at Yerba Buena Island and Palos Verdes. Thriving in the 20’s despite the poverty of the great depression, she proudly enrolled at U.C. Davis as a home economics major just before the US entered World War II.
There she met the love of her life when “this handsome 2nd Lieutenant from New Jersey introduced himself to me”. Their life long marriage produced seven children in its first 20 years.
As a war bride, “I expected my husband to be called away from his stateside duties to the battles of the Pacific every day.” Lieutenant Johnston’s first overseas assignment moved the family to Tokyo after the war. Victoria and Fred’s family grew to 3 children while there.
Tours of duty for this officer’s wife included; Washington DC, Fort Monmouth, NJ, Heidelberg, Germany, Ft Huachuca, AZ, and Mountain View, CA. She had a love of blending with the character and natives of wherever she lived. After a career in military life, Victoria and Fred returned to his childhood home with 5 dependent children to live in Red Bank, NJ from 1967-91. Victoria took up golf at 55 and played until the age of 98.
After the death of her husband, and her children grown, Victoria moved back to the Bay Area. She lived 30 years in California after her husband of 46 years passed, residing in Los Altos, Roseville, and Mountain View with many trips around the country visiting family in the 4 corners of the US and playing golf here and there. She had a special love of the Arizona desert.
Victoria was patriotic. Her father and mother infused her with pride in family and the greatness of America. As a 4H’er and UC Davis Aggie, she raised and showed prize-winning sheep and won a blue ribbon for her apple pie at the Sacramento County Fair. As a dutiful army wife and mother of 7, she instilled her enduring values of healthy living, love of family and country into all her progeny. She skillfully earned 100 years of great health by practicing, not preaching. She lovingly dispensed just the right amount of advice as needed to each of her children. Victoria celebrated her 100th birthday “socially distanced” on July 16, 2020 at Villa Siena in Mountain View.
Her family felt blessed to surround her in person the week before she left to reunite with her husband in Heaven. Some of her last words were “things couldn’t be any better”.
Her children thank the caring staff of Villa Siena for loving care of our Victoria in her final happy years and condolences are appreciated as gifts to the Villa Siena Foundation (villa-siena.org)
Preceding Victoria in death are her father, Casimir Leo Pierscinski, mother Victoria Pyshora-Pierscinski, brother Leo Casimir Pierscinski, her husband Colonel Frederick J. Johnston, US Army Signal Corps.
She is survived by her seven children: Patricia Robison (C. Peter), Joan Johnston-Smith (Richard), Robert Frederick Johnston (Susan), John Joseph Johnston (Patricia), Frederick Joseph Johnston Jr. (Kathie), Kenneth Richard Johnston (Cyndy), Victoria Elizabeth Johnston, eleven grandchildren and spouses and nine great grandchildren.