Lisle Jean Forrester Johnsen

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Lisle Jean Johnsen, beloved wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, died suddenly on August 14, 2014. Lisle was born in Salt Lake City on October 18, 1930, to Lisle Keele Forrester and James Donald Forrester. Her father was an exploratory geologist who brought his young family from Utah to Cornell University in upstate New York in the 1930s, where he obtained a Ph.D in mining engineering. Eventually Dr. Forrester would be teaching at the University of Missouri Rolla School of Mines, where one of his graduate students was Stanley Johnsen, newly discharged from the Army Air Corps after World War II. At the time, Lisle was still in high school, but, as she put it later, she set her cap for Stanley, and they married in 1950. After beginning their married life in a one-room apartment in Chicago (she liked to go alone to matinee Cubs games on “Ladies’ Day”), the couple moved to Idaho and then Arkansas before arriving in Ray, Arizona, in 1958. Stanley took a job as drilling and blasting foreman at Kennecott Copper Company’s Ray Mine, eventually rising to Operations Superintendent at the mine, and Lisle (who went by her middle name, Jean, until much later in her life) raised their five children. In her spare time, she became the best “Anglo” Mexican-food cook in the Copper Basin. In Arizona, Lisle also re-connected with her beloved P.E.O. sisterhood, and she remained a loyal and active member of Chapter AR, in Kearny, and BD, in Scottsdale, being honored with her 50-year membership star in 2009. As her children neared college age, Lisle took at position as the receptionist at the company medical office in Kearny, where her quick instincts, grace and tact served her well. Woe to anyone who called for an appointment when Lisle’s “book was full.” After retiring from Kennecott, Lisle and Stanley moved to Scottsdale, where they were season-ticket holders during the Diamondbacks’ inaugural season and volunteered at St. Maria Goretti Catholic Church. Lisle is survived by her husband, Stanley; her five children, Diane Johnsen (Roger Brodman), Barbara Nabours (Gerald Nabours), Donald Peder Johnsen (Cindy Currence), Mary Loroña (Samuel Loroña) and Stanley Johnsen, 12 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. Shortly before her heart suddenly failed, Lisle was blessed by a glimpse of an ultrasound image of her fifth great-grandchild, due in December. A funeral Mass will be celebrated at 1 p.m. Monday at St. Maria Goretti Catholic Church, 6261 N. Granite Reef Road, Scottsdale. Private interment to follow. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the Memory Unit at Westminster Village, 12000 N. 90th St., Scottsdale, 85260; Catholic Social Services or the P.E.O. scholarship Fund.

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