Willard Johnson (1903 - 1991)

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Summary

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Willard Johnson Biography & Family History

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Last Known Residence

Beverly Hills, Los Angeles County, California

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Education

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Gender

Male

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Timeline

1903 - In the year that Willard Johnson was born, the Harley-Davidson Motor Company was begun by two childhood friends, William Harley and Arthur Davidson - with help from Arthur's brother, Walter. Their first prototype - a "motor-bicycle" - couldn't climb hills without also pedaling, so they went back to the drawing board, and in 1904 their new version came in 4th in a race. Harley-Davidson and Indian Motorcycle Manufacturing Company were the only two major motorcycle companies to survive the Great Depression.

1920 - He was 17 years old when on November 2, radio station KDKA began broadcasting in Pittsburgh, PA. This was the first commercial radio broadcast in the United States. Westinghouse, a leading manufacturer of radios and the backer of the station, chose the date because of the Presidential election. People liked it because they could hear about the results of the election between Harding and Cox before the morning papers arrived. Four years later, there were 600 commercial stations broadcasting in the U.S.

1967 - By the time he was 64 years old, on November 7th, President Johnson signed legislation passed by Congress that created the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), which would later become PBS and NPR. The legislation required CPB to operate with a "strict adherence to objectivity and balance in all programs or series of programs of a controversial nature".

1970 - Willard was 67 years old when on May 4th, four students at Kent State University in Ohio were shot and killed by National Guardsmen. The students were at a peaceful demonstration protesting the invasion of Cambodia by US forces. There had been precedent for the killing of American college students. The previous year, on May 15th, Alameda County Sheriffs used shotguns against U.C. Berkeley students at a protest for People's Park. One student died, one was blinded, 128 were injured.

1991 - In the year of Willard Johnson's passing, on November 7th, legendary basketball player Magic Johnson announced that he had HIV. In 1991, the public was confused about the difference between HIV and AIDS (HIV is a virus that can lead to AIDS) and there was little treatment for either. Most thought that Johnson would die within a year or so. Also, the transmission of AIDS wasn't understood so he had to retire from basketball. Magic Johnson is still alive and well.

Willard Johnson Family Tree

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Obituary

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Willard Johnson died on October 15, 1991 at 88 years old. No cause of death has been entered for Willard. He was born on September 6, 1903. There is no information about Willard's family. We know that Willard Johnson had been residing in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles County, California.

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