frederick johansen

September 23, 1931 ~ January 8, 2017

In Memory of Fred Johansen

September 23, 1931 – January 8, 2017

Memorial Mass

Friday, January 13, 2017, 1:30 p.m.

Cathedral of Christ the King

2699 Peachtree Road NE, Atlanta, GA 30305

Fred insisted he wanted no more than one inch of space in the newspaper for his obituary. A life so extraordinary might need a bit more room.

Frederick Alexander was born in Houston, Texas, to Charles and Ollivetti Johansen, joining siblings Charlie and Katherine.

He graduated from Marist School in Atlanta, Georgia in 1949 and continued his education at Georgia Tech, graduating with an engineering degree in 1953.

Fred met his “Barbara-Dahlin'” in the winter of 1956, and they married at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Atlanta in April of 1957.

After serving in the Air Force as a pilot, he joined Delta Air Lines in November 1958. Fred loved his job. He retired as Captain of the L-1011 in 1991 after 33 years of stellar service.

Whether traveling by airplane or Harley-Davidson, motorboat or dog sled, Fred was equally enthusiastic about the journey as he was the destination. He embraced adventure and new opportunities, and was in constant awe of our amazing planet. He loved people and engaged in conversation with family and strangers alike. Fred loved his Heal Over on Lake Burton, a cabin enjoyed for 54 years by four generations of Johansens, the family dachshund Caesar Augustus of Burton, and relatives and friends abundant. His capable and creative hands were always at work at Heal Over, designing and building, repairing and loving.

Fred was a constant and faithful servant to his God and his Church. He loved his Cathedral of Christ the King, where he was an active parishioner for all of his adult life. He also celebrated his time at St. Helena Catholic Church in Rabun County, Georgia, during the summer months.

Fred adored his family. He is survived by his treasured Barbara, his children Janice, Alec, Laura, Kristen, and Emily, their spouses Ron Spieker, Joel Jeffcoat, George Kilguss, and Ken Pecoraro, and his grandchildren Martha and Patrick, Clayton and Hattie, Gieva, George, and Michaela, Ryan, Matthew and Henry.

Thank you, Daddy, for dancing with Mama in the kitchen, for teaching five teenagers how to drive, for appreciating a good chili dog and frosted orange at the Varsity, and for your positive attitude and graceful humility in your last days. You celebrated life every day. You will forever be celebrated!

“The most exciting time of my life was you all,” Fred Johansen, December 20, 2016. Ditto, Podnah.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to:

The Catholic Foundation of North Georgia,

The Gunning Johansen Endowment Fund

780 Johnson Ferry Road, #750

Atlanta, GA 30342


Cathedral of Christ the King

See address above.

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  1. Kenneth Zaloudek says:

    Sorry for your loss, he was one of the good ones.

  2. Ann Caverly says:

    Dear Barbara, So sorry to learn of your loss. I remember the fun times we had. Since Gene’s passing, I have found solace in remembering the laughter and it helps. I’ll be praying for you, Love, Ann

  3. Bob Teasley says:

    Fred was a role model as a pilot and a fine gentleman. He willl be missed.
    Bob Teasley

  4. David Gardner says:

    Fred was a great role model, as I flew S/O and F/O for him on several occasions….a consummate professional, easy going and a true gentleman.
    God Bless,
    David Gardner
    DL Capt. ret.

  5. Bill Gibson says:

    I flew co-pilot for Fred on both the 727 and L-1011. He was a joy to fly with, and great fun on a layover. My best Fred story happened in February 1991; on my very first Int’l L-1011 Captain trip to FRA, we had to shut down an engine and return to Gander. Eight hours after landing, Fred arrived with the relief aircraft. He was very senior and had bid reserve to get time off, but had to come rescue me. As usual, he took his interrupted mini-vacation with grace and good humor. You will be missed, old friend.

  6. Julian Black says:

    Fred was a pleasure and joy to fly with. It was mid ’70’s and we were flying a B-727 rotation together all month. Fred was Captain, I was F/O and Adrian Parham was S/O. During that month, Fred set a date for the three of us to go to his lake house on Lake Burton and then take a trip down the easy part of the Chattooga River. He drove us up and back and made it a trip that I continually talk about.
    God bless and R.I.P.!

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