John C. Johnson Jr.

Published 2:53 pm Friday, June 28, 2024

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John C. Johnson Jr., M.D. was born in Morristown, Tenn., on August 24, 1944, and died on June 27, 2024. He lived with his mother and father in Jefferson City until he was seven and moved to Elizabethton in March 1952. He went to elementary school, junior high, and high school in Elizabethton, graduating from Elizabethton High School in 1962 as the salutatorian of the class.

His further education included an undergraduate degree in chemistry from Vanderbilt University, followed by an M.D. in 1969 from the same university. He then interned in internal medicine at Vanderbilt and did an ophthalmology residency at Washington University in St. Louis, finishing in June 1973.

The following two years were spent with the USAF at Keesler AFB in Biloxi, Miss. He then did a year’s fellowship in vitreoretinal diseases at Bascom Palmer Eye Institute in Miami, Fla. He moved to Johnson City after the year in Miami and spent his entire professional career at the Johnson City Eye Clinic, beginning in July 1976 and ending December 31, 2023.

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He was preceded in death by his father, John C. Johnson Sr., and his mother, Hilda R. Johnson.

He is survived by his wife, Vivian Morriss Johnson; daughter, Jenni Gabelsberg (Jason), son, David Johnson (Crystal), and four grandchildren, Haley Gabelsberg, Kyle Gabelsberg, Avery Gabelsberg and Ayden Johnson.

John loved medicine, the Johnson City Eye Clinic, and his patients. He golfed, read, and learned with great joy.

John’s highest praise for people he revered were the words forthright, patriot, and honorable. The same words could have been said about him.

The family will receive friends on Monday, July 1, at Tetrick Funeral Services, Johnson City, from 5 to 7 p.m. John will be buried on Tuesday, July 2, at 10 a.m. at Happy Valley Memorial Park. Memories and condolences may be shared at

Tetrick Funeral Services, 3001 Peoples Street, Johnson City, TN 37604, is honored to serve the Johnson family. (423) 610-7171.