William M “Bill” Johnston 1937~2022


William M “Bill” Johnston, Jr., 84, of Fayetteville, PA passed away Friday, January 21, 2022 in the Chambersburg Hospital.

William M “Bill” Johnston
William M “Bill” Johnston

Born Saturday, February 17, 1937 in the Chambersburg Maternity Home, he was the only son of the late William M. Johnston, Sr. and Jeanne P. (Schuchman) Johnston.

He was a graduate of the Chambersburg Area Senior High School with the Class of 1955. While in high school Bill excelled on the track and field team in broad jump, setting records.

Bill served in the National Guard Reserves for a number of years. In his early life he was the owner and operator of the Sunoco Gas station on Radio Hill in Chambersburg. He worked as a mechanic at Eastland Motors for many years. He later worked at Letterkenny Army Depot in Building 350 and as a laboratory animal technician at Fort Detrick for 17 years before retiring in 2013.

Bill was a man of many talents and interests. When he was a member of the Chambersburg Motor Knights Club, he drag raced cars at Mason Dixon and York Drag strips. His 1955 Chevy was a record holder for its Class in the National Hot Rod Association. He enjoyed building HO model trains. He assembled engines and cars from raw kits. He then painted assemblies with intricate detail, working under a magnifying glass.

Bill attended Iron Springs Brethren in Christ Church in Fairfield, PA. He was proud to be a church board member and performed any other jobs to be helpful.

He is survived by two daughters, Kimberly S. Helman (Doug) of Chambersburg and Stephanie J. Wood (Michael) of Fayetteville; five grandchildren, Cory Helman, Andrew Helman (Andrea), Alyssa Scruggs (Bradley), Karli Groves (Aaron) and Shawn Wood; seven great-grandchildren, Cole Helman, Madison Helman, Nathan Helman, Obi Helman, Sybil Helman, Asher Scruggs and Reagan Groves; and his longtime companion, Nancy George, of Fayetteville, PA.

In addition to his parents he is preceded in death by his wife, Bernice “Peggy” (Ritter) Johnston who passed away April 2002.
Services will be held at 2 p.m., Wednesday, January 26, 2022 in the Chapel of the Thomas L. Geisel Funeral Home, 333 Falling Spring Road, Chambersburg, PA 17202 with Pastor Doug Lichty officiating.

Burial will follow in Norland Cemetery, Chambersburg.

The family will receive friends from 6-8 p.m., Tuesday evening in the funeral home as well as one hour prior to the service Wednesday afternoon.

In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to Iron Springs Brethren In Christ Church, 855 Iron Springs Road, Fairfield, PA 17320.

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