Jerry Ray Johnston
September 8, 1956 - January 9, 2022
Becky Boston
Ross copperman
Canaan Smith & Family
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Jeremy Noble
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Jerry Ray Johnston, age 65, passed away Sunday, January 9th, 2022 in Franklin TN from complications of Covid pneumonia.  Jerry was preceded in death by his parents, Jimmy Johnston and Dorothy Johnston and his grandparents, Clarence and Mae Johnston who raised him from a small child.    He is survived by his devoted wife of 45…

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Tim Fenn left a message on January 20, 2022:
I had the pleasure of working with Jerry for many years. He is a great human being. He may be gone from us on earth but lives on in our memories and in our hearts. He treated people so well. His family are the sweetest people. Texa steals your heart in a New York minute. Its been a while since I have spoken with him but I can hear his voice and his wise advice. He cares deeply for his family and his people. My sincere condolences to you Karen and Texa who I have met and Jaren whom I have only met in the many stories Jerry told me. Jerry touched many lives and will continue to be a fine example of a human being as he lives on in our hearts forever! God bless and Jerry, you keep heaven straight up there!
Ann Nichols left a message on January 20, 2022:
So so sad to hear of Jerry’s passing, what a shock. I didn’t know him well personally but knew him very well through my husband, Doug Nichols, who spoke the world of him and his kindness. He told me about how he met Jerry as he was playing a gig in east Texas and encouraged him to move to Nashville as a drummer-which he did. After moving to Nashville Jerry helped Doug get drumming gigs, along with delivering real estate books early in the mornings to help pay the bills. What a generous, selfless, good-hearted man he was! When Doug’s younger brother passed Jerry drove hours to be at his funeral unexpected.. that is a true friend, The last messages I have from Jerry are those expressing his sorrow of Doug’s recent, unexpected passing at the same age of 65. Just can’t believe it. I know they are at peace and enjoying playing drums together in heaven! Prayers for his dear family ❤️
Travis Edwards left a message on January 20, 2022:
Sorry to see this. My prayers and thoughts for all.
Mark Weiss left a message on January 19, 2022:
Karen, Jaren, and Texa - I want to express my deepest sympathies to you for your loss, and let you know that I am praying for you all – that God brings peace and comfort to you during this difficult time. The news of Jerry Ray breaks my heart. I was just thinking of reaching out to him the other day. I haven’t talked to him for many years, and yet, for some reason, he came to mind. He was my first industry connection - working for him 25 years ago at KenTen Publishing. He took me under his wing and showed me the ropes, and I treasure those moments. It seemed like he knew everyone, and everyone loved him. He was definitely fun to be around and an inspiration to me. One night, he even allowed me to bring my parents backstage at the Opry to meet my mom’s favorite – Jean Sheppard. It was one of the greatest moments in my mom’s life, and I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to do that for her – all because of Jerry Ray. While everyone else was looking at Jean, I was watching Jerry Ray drumming, thinking how proud I was to know such a wonderful person. Thank you for sharing him with all of us. I know that I am blessed to have known him.
Becky Boston left a message on January 19, 2022:
Heartbroken for your loss. I hope you find peace.
Peace of mind is a call away. We're here when you need us most.
Linda Davis left a message on January 18, 2022:
Karen, Jaren and Texa... Lang and I are so sorry for the unthinkable loss of Jerry Ray. He was such a stand up great man!! I will always treasure the many many times that he kept the beat going for my shows. Not only was he a talented and ‘team player’ -musician he made the rest of the hours better because he was there. Our last conversation was backstage at the Opry. We would talk a little music and a lot of FAMILY!! Karen, you and the kids were his world!! Ya’ll have an addition since I talked with Jerry Ray.. a grand child. I am so sad that I won’t get to hear him brag about little Jude. I can see his big smile right now.. he used it often.. it’s etched in my mind. Jerry Ray is etched in my heart always!! I will see him again in heaven. Meanwhile, down here, there is a big big hole. Our family will be praying for your comfort. Jerry Ray will never be forgotten❤️ Linda Davis
Denise Shackelford (Nichols) left a message on January 18, 2022:
Karen, I'm so sorry to hear about Jerry Ray's passing. Even though I've not seen either of you in years, memories of my earliest days in Nashville came flooding back. Seems like only yesterday in many ways. My heart is with you and your family. -Denise
Tony Harrell left a message on January 18, 2022:
I am saddened with the news of Jerry Ray's passing. We met in the early 80's through our mutual friend Doug Nichols. You always were kind, talented, quick witted and a good family man. I have many fond memories of living in Inglewood in the 80's and Jerry Ray stopping by the house, or us playing the Opry with different acts on the same night or playing a gig together at some random bar like Dad's Place or Gabe's or many others. Praying for peace and comfort for the family. Rest In Peace friend.
Rosie White Franklin left a message on January 17, 2022:
Jerry Ray was a friend of mine from the Grand Ole Opry. We always had wonderful talks about our families and music. He was a great friend & musician who will be dearly missed. Love and prayers to his family.
Cynthia Moore left a message on January 16, 2022:
Embracing prayers for you all. Jerry was the best!! I treasured Our friendship and loved working with him! I love you all and I tell you so ❤️
Ross copperman left a message on January 16, 2022:
In memory of Jerry Ray Johnston, Ross copperman lit a candle
Canaan Smith & Family left a message on January 16, 2022:
Our hearts are broken for your loss. We love you guys dearly, and are asking God to provide the covering only He can right now
DonBrown left a message on January 16, 2022:
Sorry for your loss Jaren!
Anna Hodge left a message on January 16, 2022:
Having met Evyn & Jaren only one time, the level of kindness and genuineness I noted of their personalities displays the character that was instilled by parents. I can tell, through Jaren, that his Dad was a solid and genuine soul. No words can make the pain subside, but take comfort knowing that friends, family and even acquaintances are lifting you all up. Hang in there. Anna Hodge (and Susanna, Tradd)
Jim Kelley left a message on January 16, 2022:
So sorry for your loss. He will always be with you in spirit. A big Hug from jim Kelley and family.
Jeremy Noble left a message on January 16, 2022:
From Myself and Holly also my Father and Mother we want to send our love to the family at this time and let you know Jerry was more than a friend of the family he was considered family! His smile and stories will stay and generous heart will live on through your lives, He was a great example of what it meant to love everyone because he did! He treated me like a son and looked out for me when I was out on the road (also giving updates to my dad ha ha) but that was kind of man he was, he will truly be missed! Love to your Family! (Jeremy, Holly, Ottie and Shirley Noble)
Jason & Shirley Peacock left a message on January 16, 2022:
We are so very sorry to hear the loss of your dad
Keio stroud left a message on January 15, 2022:
Sending love to the family.
kelly grismore left a message on January 15, 2022:
Sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with your family. God Bless
Beverly Bradley left a message on January 15, 2022:
Karen, Texa, and Jaren, I am so sorry to hear of this and you will be n my thoughts and prayers.
Peace of mind is a call away. We're here when you need us most.
Tom and Bobbie Branson left a message on January 14, 2022:
Karen and Family, we send our prayers and love to you during this difficult time. We were so blessed that Jerry and Karen were such an important part of our Sunday school class at Oak Valley. Your entire family is a blessing to all who know you. Our prayers for each of you until that great reunion yet to come when we meet forever in His Kingdom.
Inell Garner left a message on January 14, 2022:
I am so sorry for your loss. My sincere condolences. Continue to be comforted in the love he had for his for his family, and all the precious memories.
Jan Lincoln left a message on January 14, 2022:
Sympathy, prayers for comfort, and love to all of Jerry’s family. He gave us all such wonderful memories and will be greatly missed.
Linda Wilhite left a message on January 14, 2022:
It was a pleasure to get to know you. Rest In Peace
H left a message on January 13, 2022:
Karen, Jaren, and Texa. I am so very sorry for your loss. Jerry was a very good friend of mine since 1998. I will miss our conversations. We would talk every few months to see how everyone was. When I would ask him how the family was, he was always so happy, upbeat, and proud of you all. I remember traveling with Jerry to see Jaren and his band in Austin, TX. I believe it was the first time at South by South West in the early days. Jerry will be missed by me for sure and so many others. I will keep you and all your family and friends in my thoughts and prayers during these very tough times. Harry James
Donna Davis left a message on January 13, 2022:
My prayers go to My Dear Coworker Texa Ray may God continue to bless your family with Happy Times with you Dad # He is with lord in a safe place
Debra & Ron Evans left a message on January 13, 2022:
Ron & I are deeply saddened by the passing of your Father. Gone to soon. I know he lived a fun & love filled life and was very proud of Jaren & Texa. He was a wonderful father & husband. Our hearts go out to the Johnston family.
Bill Boyk left a message on January 13, 2022:
I worked with Jerry at CTM and I loved to talk to him whether it was business or personal because 100% of the time we would laugh and have a smile on our faces, whether face to face or over the phone. There is no doubt Jerry is in heaven looking down and protecting his family. Rest In Peace Jerry.
Kelby Ray Caldwell left a message on January 13, 2022:
Jerry, or dad as I called him, has been a part of my life since I was around 16 years old. I started running around with Jaren when we were teenagers, which ended up growing into a lifelong best-friendship. I used to go over to his parents' house for hangs, and the occasional holiday. Dad was always cooking up a storm, that man had a way with the kitchen. He was always so supportive of not just our band, but me individually. He always pushed me to keep doing what I was doing, and to do it better! Definitely one of the funniest guys I've ever met, always great with a one or two liner. His favorite, since the very beginning, was always, "Son, get a haircut." I almost always got a phone call on my birthday, with the whole family singing to me in unison. He'd always tell me how old I was in dog years. That's the kind of fun and silliness he brought to this world. I went through my phone because I knew we had texted on his birthday, found it and screenshot it. I've shared it here for a laugh, as that's what he was always trying to get out of each one of us. I love you dad and I'll miss you more than you know. Well you probably do know. I love you Jaren, Texa, mom, and all the rest of the family I've met out there on the road. Hugs to you all.
Mike Habib left a message on January 13, 2022:
I was saddened to hear of the passing of Jerry. I had the pleasure of knowing him through our working days at Foto. He was such a great person, whether working together, or simply connecting after our careers went different ways. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Johnston Family and Friends during this tough time. God Bless Mike Habib
Doug and Summer Williamson left a message on January 13, 2022:
Jerry was not only a neighbor but a friend. He loved his family so well and enjoyed telling us stories and keepong us entertained. The world is shines a little less bright without him in it. He will be so missed. Sending love and prayers to Karen, Texa, Jaren, and all that loved him
Cathy Wilbanks Rogers left a message on January 13, 2022:
Karen, I am so sorry for your loss. You and Jerry spent a lifetime together. Prayers for your healing and for your family and you walk this journey. Cathy Wilbanks Rogers
Jimmy Cook left a message on January 12, 2022:
Dear family y'all were a huge part of my childhood and am hurting I'm so sorry and love y'all your in my prayers
Tamara Swinson left a message on January 12, 2022:
In memory of Jerry Ray Johnston, Tamara Swinson lit a candle
Barbara Williams left a message on January 12, 2022:
I got a call shortly after Jerry passed, and I was speechless. What a giant he was, with a heart as big as this world. He was so generous in many ways, and could tell a story like no one else; he always put a smile on my face. I hurt SO much, Karen, for you and Texa. Please know you are both in my prayers.
Bobby Green left a message on January 12, 2022:
In memory of Jerry Ray Johnston, Bobby Green lit a candle
Bobby Green left a message on January 12, 2022:
I just want to thank Jerry Ray for his friendship and help when I was sick and couldn't work. I considered him one of my very best friends and we talked on the phone many times and reminiscent about old times and laughed about insider musician jokes. Jerry Ray I will miss you so much!!
Heather Evans Surlas left a message on January 12, 2022:
JJ, Kaiden and I are so sorry for your loss. Our thoughts are with your family during this very difficult time
Randy Layne left a message on January 12, 2022:
I could not have asked for a better friend than Jerry Ray for almost 40 years. He was always a blessing and a gentleman. He was the best father and husband that I ever knew. I got to tell him that the year I got him a Father’s Day gift. A talented musician and singer. He was so much to so many. I will miss him so much. We talked almost weekly for years and enjoyed it. I pray for the family’s hearts to heal. Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints. Psalm 116:15
Michael Chewning left a message on January 12, 2022:
I send my heart felt condolences to Texa and family. I was privileged to get to know Jerry to some degree. Always had a smile to share. May God bring comfort and peace to his family.
Peace of mind is a call away. We're here when you need us most.
Donna Boyington Hust left a message on January 12, 2022:
Karen, wanted to reach out and let you know that you have my heartfelt condolences during this difficult time. My heart hurts for you and your family. I copied this saying years ago and read it daily. "Those We Love Can Never Be More Than A Thought Away For As Long As There's A Memory They Live In Our Hearts To Stay" Love you. Your long lost friend in WM Donna Boyington Hust
Linda Wilhite left a message on January 12, 2022:
He was a wonderful man. Always smiling and kind to everyone. Rest In Peace, Jerry.
Brenda Post left a message on January 12, 2022:
My prayers are with you all at this time and the days ahead. May our Heavenly Father lead, guide and protect you. Blessings are sent to you. My love, Brenda Post
Kilpatrick Funeral Homes left a message:
Please accept our deepest condolences for your family's loss.
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