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Johnson C. Sue

Johnson Chee Sue, 90, of Honolulu, Hawai’i passed away peacefully in Honolulu on Saturday, October 7, 2023. He was born in Oakland, CA, on June 22, 1933.  

He graduated from Oakland Technical High School, Oakland, CA in 1952 and from UC Berkeley with a BA in Landscape Architecture in 1956. As a landscape architect, he designed many award-winning parks and municipal facilities in California, including the Kaiser Building rooftop garden and Lincoln Park, both in Oakland; Las Palmas Park and De Anza Park in Sunnyvale, and the City of Fairfield (California) Civic Center grounds. In the 1980s, he designed and built single family homes for sale in the Oakland Hills and owned rental apartments and commercial real estate.  

In retirement, he and his first love of 52 years, Darlene, traveled to many places, motoring around the Lower-48 in their 1977 GMC Eleganza RV and camping in many of the National Parks. They were members of the GMC-49ers RV Club for many years, and enjoyed going to many of the Club’s rallies around the country. Many friends remember the joy of watching him and Darlene dance to the waltzes, polkas and swing. They also traveled internationally, visiting 6 of the 7 continents.

After Darlene’s passing, Johnson moved to Hawai’i where he met his second love, Marian L. Chun, at a dinner party put on by a mutual friend. They attended and were married at the United Church of Christ on South Judd Street in Honolulu, HI. On most Fridays, they visited I’olani Palace to listen to the Royal Hawaiian Band. John and Marian once went on a cruise from Honolulu to Victoria, BC, to visit their good friend, Rose Woo.

Johnson will be deeply missed by his family and friends. He is fondly remembered for his generosity, deep conversations, adventurous spirit, hard work ethic, photography, and helpful guidance in the use of such things as power tools, construction, architecture and landscape design.  

Johnson is predeceased by spouse Darlene Yim Tom; sister Gladys Lee (Murray); brother Ed Sue (Amy); and brother-in-law Dennis Tom and wife Eleanor. Survived by spouse Marian Lum Chun; son Larry (Carla) of MI, son Steve (Karen) of HI, daughter Linda of HI, and son Alan “AJ” of WI; grandchildren Gregory “JC” Sue, Hayley Sue, and Charlotte Sue; and siblings Helen Owyoung and Edith Sheu (George), and brother-in-law Duane Tom (Sandra).

Johnsonʻs wishes were to be cremated and scattered with no services. The family will honor his wishes. In lieu of flowers or gifts, the family requests donations be made to Project Shaka, a nonprofit program dedicated to sharing Aloha through Hawaii’s Shaka gesture. 

Tax deductible donations can be made online at ID8.org or by check payable to “ID8” and mailed to 1012 18th Ave. Honolulu, HI. 96816. 

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