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Wednesday, October 4, 2023
Starts at 11:30 am (Central time)
William Hampton “Hamp” Johnston, Jr. of Hunt, Texas—devoted husband, loving father, and proud grandfather—went home to be with the Lord on September 29, 2023, at age 93. Hamp was born to Hampton and Jessie Edens Johnston in Lufkin, Texas, on August 1, 1930. He was blessed with a loving childhood and lifelong relationships with his siblings: older sisters Wydette and Mary and younger brother and best friend Roy. He graduated from Lufkin High School in 1948 and was the star quarterback of his high school football team, largely due to his ability to throw the football both left and right-handed. After high school, he pursued his passion for all things mechanical and attended Rice University, where he graduated with a degree in mechanical engineering. Hamp began his career with GE, working in Cincinnati, Boston, Louisville, and Burlington, Vermont. He was drafted and served two years in the United States Army. Hamp’s entrepreneurial spirit and fondness for Texas ranches led him to a successful career in real estate investing. Throughout his career, Hamp was active in businesses and charities in Junction, Texas, a community he held dear to his heart. He served as president of the Kimble Hospital Board of Directors and was a lifelong Rotarian.
In his early thirties, Hamp found the love of his life, Virginia Moore of Hunt, Texas. They were married on December 15, 1962, in the Hunt United Methodist Church. Their 60-year union has served as a model for their family of steadfast dedication and love beyond bounds. Even in his final days, Hamp took Virginia’s hand and expressed his love for her. Hamp and Virginia were fabulous parents to their children Mary Martha and Bill, raising them in Junction with never-ending love and encouragement. The family often reminisces about their one telephone, no TV household that seemed insufferable to Mary Martha and Bill at the time but now seems like the most beautiful way to raise a family.
Hamp was known to his three grandsons as Papa, and there couldn’t be a better one. No project on the ranch was ever too small for Papa if it generated excitement for his grandsons. Creating huge piles of dirt for their toy excavators, an outdoor play structure that never stopped expanding, and a lawn mower-powered wagon for exploring were only a few of the projects Papa took on for the boys. Papa and Grammy (Virginia) loved attending their grandsons’ sporting events, and Papa was well-known among the Tivy High School men's basketball teams for providing his famous green beans at team dinners.
Hamp was a faithful servant to his Lord, Jesus Christ, and his involvement in the Hunt United Methodist Church and the First Methodist Church of Junction was an essential part of his life. He greatly loved his Sunday School classes and, with Virginia, hosted many church parties at their ranch in Hunt. He rarely missed a Sunday service or a potluck where his green beans were a staple.
Hamp had many qualities that endeared him to all, but his gentle manner, kindness, ingenuity, and resourcefulness will be among the most remembered. Nothing was more important to him than his family. He is survived by his wife, Virginia Moore Johnston; his children and their spouses, Mary Martha and Dr. John Pickens of Dallas and Bill and Rachel Johnston of Kerrville; his grandsons, Will Johnston, Luke Johnston, and Jackson Johnston, all of Kerrville; brother and sister-in-law, Roy and Carolyn Johnston of San Antonio; brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Jack and Kathy Moore of Kerrville; lifelong friend, Juan Martinez of Ingram, Texas; and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, sister and brother-in-law, Wydette and Dr. Ned Barrett; sister, Mary Read; and sister-in-law, Peggy Moore. Honorary pallbearers will be Mr. Johnston’s grandsons. Hamp’s family would like to extend their heartfelt appreciation to those who have contributed so much to his life and care, including Miguel and Ramon Trujillo, Dr. James Young, Peterson Hospice, and the staff of Riverpoint of Kerrville.
A memorial celebration of Hamp’s remarkable life will be held on Wednesday, October 4, 2023, at 11:30 a.m. at the Hunt United Methodist Church, with a reception and lunch to follow in the Fellowship Hall.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Hunt United Methodist Church or the First Methodist Church of Junction. Arrangements are under the direction and personal care of the professionals at Kerrville Funeral Home. (830) 895-5111