SCRANTON, PA, US
U.S. Marine Corps
LCPL, 2D CEB, (RCP3, MEB-A FWD) 2D MAR DIV, CAMP LEJEUNE, NC
02/18/2010, HELMAND PROVINCE, AFGHANISTAN
Lance Corporal Larry Johnson was killed in Afghanistan. He was 19 years young. Larry is remembered as a proud Marine and a good natured, friendly person with a close-knit family. Lance Corporal Johnson joined the Marine Corps after graduating Scranton High School in 2008. Dominic Rodriguez also 19, had known Johnson since both young men were toddlers, and described his friend as a laid back person who enjoyed hanging out with his buddies.
“He was never mad, ever. He went through a lot in his life and never did he let that bring him down. He was always with a smile on his face,” Mr. Rodriguez said.
Rodriguez’s mother, Amy, said “My heart just aches for the family right now,” she said. “He loved his mom so much. … He was their hero. They loved him so much.”
Scranton High principal Eric Schaeffer recalled Johnson as a polite, friendly student who looked forward to joining the Marines. He remembered his mother’s pride as she dropped off a picture of Lance Corporal Johnson in his uniform earlier in the week.
“I can picture him walking down the hall- blond hair and bright blue eyes, always smiling,” Mr. Schaeffer added.
His former English teacher, Jennifer Brotherton, also remembers Lance Corporal Johnson as a good-natured student who almost always had a smile on his face. “He had a really good heart and he was so full of energy. Any time a child dies, it’s too soon.”
Lance Corporal Johnson was born to Larry Johnson and Johanna Thomas Johnson, both of Scranton. Larry was a member of Divine Mercy Parish. Larry was a snowboarder, swimmer and boating enthusiast. He wanted to care for animals. As a 10 year old, he dreamed of being a veterinarian. He owned an unnamed python and could draw highly detailed pictures of animals.
Johanna Johnson, Lance Corporal Johnson’s mother worried about him the way a mom worries about a son fighting a war a world away. His being killed was not supposed to happen.
Johanna Johnson worked on the assembly line packaging helmet shields for the helmets American troops wear in places like Afghanistan. Ashley Johnson described her brother as someone who always smiled. Larry loved to laugh. His Marine pictures show a boy turned into a man. After being deployed to Afghanistan, Lance Corporal Johnson talked about how he would no longer take life for granted.