Richard Lee Johnson, 75, builder who owned Bayside Construction

Richard Lee Johnson

Richard Lee Johnson, 75, passed peacefully Jan. 21, 2020, at his daughter’s home in Virginia Beach, after a long and courageous battle with Alzheimer’s.

He was born to the late Maxwell and Anne Johnson, Oct. 24, 1944, in Norfolk. Richard graduated from Great Bridge High School in 1963 and attended Old Dominion University until being drafted into the U.S. Army. He married high-school sweetheart, Jacqueline Diane Bowdoin, in 1967, and together they made their home in Virginia Beach.

Richard began work as a carpenter with his father-in-law, Stardard Bowdoin; together, they built numerous homes in Hampton Roads. Later, he would take ownership of Bayside Construction company, which continued to build homes and additions until the mid-1980s. Richard’s second career was to partner with his brother, Maxwell Johnson Jr.; and nephew, Maxwell “Trez” Johnson III, in Thrift Store City, which they owned and operated for over 35 years.

Richard’s greatest love was his family. He especially enjoyed athletic activities with his children, where he served as coach, mentor and biggest fan. Richard also loved the water, be it crazy times in the backyard pool he installed himself, to sailing, fishing, crabbing and all things boating. He started humbly in a flat-bottom lake boat with oars and graduated to captaining much larger vessels.

Richard is survived by his loving wife of 52 years, Diane Bowdoin Johnson; and their four children, Richard Johnson Jr. of Suffolk, and Jonathan Johnson, Jacqueline Hogarth and Brandon Johnson, all of Virginia Beach. He was granddad to 10 grandchildren who loved him dearly. He is also survived by two brothers, Maxwell Ellis Johnson of Franklin and Charles Johnson of Chesapeake.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Southeastern Virginia Alzheimer’s Association.

The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m., Friday, Jan. 24, at Hollomon-Brown Funeral Home, 1457 Independence Blvd., Virginia Beach. A celebration of Richard’s life will be held at 11 a.m., Saturday, Jan. 25, at Baylake United Methodist Church, 4300 Shore Drive, Virginia Beach.

Share online condolences with the family at Hollomon-Brown Funeral Home & Crematory.

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