Cover photo for Dorene R. Johnson's Obituary
Dorene R. Johnson Profile Photo
1925 Dorene 2020

Dorene R. Johnson

November 6, 1925 — October 5, 2020

Dorene R. Johnson, age 94, of Detroit Lakes, MN, passed away peacefully on Monday, October 5th, 2020, at Oak Crossing. 

Dorene was born on November 6th, 1925, in Perham, MN, to the late Ferdinand and Bertha (Ahrens) Schatschneider.  When she was nine months old, her parents moved to Evergreen Township, Becker County, where they farmed until moving to Fergus Falls in 1937.  Dorene attended school at District 53 in Evergreen and then Fergus Falls Junior High.  She graduated from Frazee High School in 1943 as valedictorian of her class.

After graduation, she worked as a bookkeeper at the Frazee Creamery, then for International Harvester in Fargo, and for Southern California Freight Lines in Los Angeles, CA.

Dorene was united in marriage to Curtis Johnson on May 1st, 1945, at St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Evergreen.  They had three children, Judy, Candy, and Kevin.  She worked as a bookkeeper at Lee Anderson Bus Company and then as the City Clerk/Treasurer for the city of Frazee, until retirement in 1985.

Dorene was a member of Bethlehem Lutheran Church and LWML in Frazee for many years. Her hobbies were sewing, gardening, reading, dancing, golf, and traveling.  Traveling included trips to Hawaii, Florida, California, New York, Arizona, and Canada. She also enjoyed attending all the band and choir concerts, piano recitals, plays, and musicals her daughters were part of in high school and college.

On May 31st, 1989, Dorene and Curtis sold their home in Frazee and moved to Detroit Lakes.  They owned several homes before moving into the Winchester on Washington in 2003. They spent many winter months in Mesa, Arizona, from 1988 to 1998.  They were members of Zion Lutheran Church in Detroit Lakes from 1992 until their deaths.

She is survived by her children, Judy Lies of Chippewa Falls, WI, Candy Harmer of Casa Grande, AZ, and Kevin Johnson of Detroit Lakes, MN; five grandchildren, Teri (Alan) Haas of Jefferson City, MO, Ryan (Michelle) Leis of Fall Creek, WI, Heather Harmer of Prior Lake, MN, Jason (Laura) Harmer of Calgary, Alberta, Canada, and Jonathan (Melissa) Kim of Minneapolis, MN; six great-grandchildren (Allyson, Alex, Hannah, Chloe, Lydia, Daniel); and sister-in-law, Lois Schatschneider of Bloomington, MN.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Curtis of nearly 67 years; her brother, Lloyd Schatschneider, and her son-in-law, Joe Lies.

A Celebration of Life will be held on Friday, October 9th, at 11:00 a.m., with visitation at 10:00 a.m., at Zion Lutheran Church in Detroit Lakes, MN. Burial will be at Oak Grove Cemetery immediately following the service.  In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to Zion Lutheran Church or a charity of your choice.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Dorene R. Johnson, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, October 9, 2020

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

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Funeral Service

Friday, October 9, 2020

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

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Graveside Service

Friday, October 9, 2020

Starts at 12:00 pm (Central time)

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