Lourdes ‘Lou’ Velasquez Johnson was born on August 3, 1958, to Gloria Baluran and Sebastian Velasquez, in Parañaque, Philippines. Her grandmother, Flora Melgar, played a major part in her young life. At the age of 18, Lourdes found her way to America settling in Spokane, WA, where she married Ellis Johnson. It was there in April 1983 that she gave birth to her only son, Nathan Velasquez Johnson. A few years later, the family moved to Des Moines, WA, where Lourdes would live the remainder of her life.
Lourdes worked in the manufacturing industry, and as a waitress, but found her greatest success as a caregiver for the elderly. Lourdes was a sought-after care provider who, as most who knew her would agree, worked too hard –- but Lourdes would say otherwise. She was dedicated to working to obtain her goals, which limited the time she allowed for herself or to relax.
Lourdes’ passion was her family, and those she considered friends. She expressed that passion through her loyalty, devotion, and compassion, ensuring everyone she loved was provided for. She loved the children of friends, as if they were her own and made sure their birthdays were properly celebrated, and Christmas’ were memorable. On May 16, 2011, her granddaughter Adriene Rae Johnson was born to her son Nathan and Elizabeth Brumley. Lourdes finally had a grandchild of her own to love and spoil.
Around the age of 33, Lourdes was diagnosed with a heart virus, which she would battle her whole life. She passed away at 1:27a.m., on Saturday, April 28, 2012, from complications of that virus.
Lourdes was preceded by parents, grandparents and sister, Edelmira Reyes. She is survived by her brothers, Eduardo and Ernesto Gonzales; nieces, Ann, Kaye and Adel Reyes; son, Nathan Velasquez Johnson and granddaughter, Adriene Rae Johnson.
Although she battled illness and worked too hard, Lourdes always found time to laugh in her unique and infectious way. In her new life, she is healthy and happy, spending time with those she lost in her previous life, while watching over those she left behind.