Johnny Lee Nelson was born, January 26, 1950, in Kingsport, Tennessee to John B. and Iva Nell Nelson.
Johnny grew up in Kingsport. He joined the military and served his Country honorably for 22 years active duty and 8 years in the retired reserve. Throughout his career in the United States Naval Construction Battalions, better known as the Seabees, which forms the Naval Construction Force (NCF) of the United States Navy, he served in both the Vietnam and Desert Storm conflicts and received numerous letters of recognition. During his time in the service, he enjoyed seeing and experiencing many new things as he traveled the world. He and his family were stationed in Japan, Mississippi, Texas, and finally California where he retired from military service.
For the past 15 years, he appreciated the comradery of working amongst other like-minded individuals as a security officer where he continued to receive letters of recognition. After a lifetime of despising cats, he befriended a stray kitten who won his heart and quickly became his little buddy at the office. He loved taking care of her and telling stories about her colorful personality.
His hobbies included mountain and road cycling, expanding his vast CD music library by transferring music files and creating custom CD mixes and vacationing to Las Vegas to see many top rated concerts and shows.
Everyone who met him could instantly see that he had a heart of gold, always spoke the truth, and was a very hard worker who earned recognition for everything he accomplished. He was extremely friendly and always made a great first impression.
Johnny passed away on April 7, 2019 in his home in Oxnard, Ca. after battling cancer.
Johnny is survived by his wife, Hsiu-Luan; daughter Vivian Lee and her husband Jeff Bernick; two grandchildren David and Sarah; one sister Alma Grace and her husband, Garley Tankersley; two brothers, David and his wife Ellen; Howard and his wife, Susan; and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Due to his many years of service, Johnny will receive full military honors at his burial.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in Johnny’s honor to Project Purple.