Donald G. Johnson, 88, of Hanahan, passed away Monday, December 25, 2017. He was born on July 27, 1929 in Johnsonville, SC to the late Victor and Mable Grier Johnson. He was a 30-year Veteran of the U.S. Navy, having served from 1948 -1978 with the last several years in the submarine service. After retiring in 1978, he obtained his real estate license and started his second career as a real estate investor actively managing his properties until his death. His compassion for his tenants was well known as his legendary slogan was “When it gets to be about the money, we are in the wrong business.” He was a member of Highland Park Baptist since 1964 and a member of the Carolina Masonic Lodge #375 in Hanahan. Don Johnson - (like Miami Vice) as he often told people - was an avid golfer until he lost most of his sight due to macular degeneration a few years ago. He belonged to several senior golf groups throughout the low country and loved competing. He was widely known for his putting prowess. After making a long putt, one of many, he would look to the sky and yell in pure delight “Mama Mia”. When his son Gary retired they spent countless days participating in golf events almost always riding in the same cart. Don found it humorous when, so many others wanted to play in their foursome, Don would wonder why? Gary would remind him,” Its simple, we always bring the beer and we share”. With Don Johnson on your team or in your life there was never a dull moment or a silent one. Despite his vision loss he loved driving his golf cart, “the buggy” around Hanahan. Regular stops included a haircut at Farley’s barber shop and was still grieving the retirement of Philp Farley. He also enjoyed driving to Pappy’s, tipping his favorite cook, Brenda. Always had to give her a little extra because she needed it more than him. Don also got prescriptions at CVS, groceries at Price Wise and household items from Blackwell’s hardware saying you must shop there and driving him in his Lincoln you must go through the full-service pump at the Amoco gas station. Would say, even if you spend more money we got to keep them in business. Each year, without fail, he would ask Gary to take him to the Hanahan Exchange oyster roast, buy a ticket, never eat an oyster, “you do know they are clusters not selects”. He came to support the community, see old friends, and drink a few beers,” make it a Bud please and heaven forbid not a light one”! He was an accomplished gardener, growing grapefruits, lemons, and oranges in Hanahan for years and even made the Post & Courier one year with his amazing stalk of bananas. He loved to fish, to travel, and dine out, making friends with restaurant workers, especially bartenders, whom he saw regularly, sharing stories just making each other feel special. So many knew Don Johnson and when he came in, the whole place was just a little more festive. He loved life and never met a stranger being a positive inspiration to all who knew him and always very thankful of how blessed his life was saying he felt like he was living heaven on earth. Having spent his early childhood at Epworth Orphanage in Columbia SC, along with three of his siblings, he was so proud of their success and longevity, especially his own significant accomplishments. He followed the stock market daily as an excellent investor. He enjoyed discussing and sharing stock tips at every opportunity. Never at a loss of words on any subject and his constant mispronouncing of words was hilarious. He just had to mention the t in his Merlot wine and forget having him say correctly, please give me a glass of that Cabernet Sauvignon. Following the death of his wife of 43 years, Betty Jean he took on the role of Patriarch for both sides of the family. He was a loving and caring husband, father, brother, father-in-law, grandad, great-granddad, uncle, friend, patron, and landlord. He took constant care of his extended family, making regular phone calls, sending cards on any occasion providing advice, a listening ear and sharing pure love. Late in life Don reunited with his first girlfriend Ann Roberts from his orphanage days back in the 1940s. They spent years enjoying a companionship of traveling, dining out and attending family events. His weekly viewing of Joel Osteen was a must, just loved the positive motivation. He had a knack for remembering the one joke from each sermon sharing with others commenting if it was a good one, not so good or a repeat. He will be missed by all who knew him, especially his children, whom he talked to several times, yes, several times a day! The void will be immeasurable but also will be the memories and the thankfulness for having so many years with not only a special father but the best friend one could hope for leaving all truly blessed. Don was preceded in death in 1994 by the love of his life, his wife of 43 years, Betty Jean Hanna Johnson, and by his son, Donald Edward Johnson, in 1959. He was also preceded in death by brothers, Victor Johnson of Jacksonville, FL, Bill Johnson of Georgetown, SC, and sisters, Mable McClory of Philadelphia, PA, Juanita Held of Kalamazoo, MI, and Jackie Flynn of Walnut Creek, CA; and granddaughter, Carol Rae Phelps Canterbury. He is survived and will be sorely missed by his daughter, Carol J. Knight; daughter, Nancy (Ed) H. Naranjo; son, Gary (Donna) W. Johnson; grandchildren, Nick (Faith) Johnson, Heather (Eric) Averette, Eddie Phelps; and great-grandchildren, Avery Louise Weld, Luke Phelps, Austin Creech, Dale Canterbury, Jr., and Haley Phelps; brother, Clarence (Rosaline) Johnson, Hilton Head, SC, sister, Frances (Don) McElveen of Hartsville, SC; along with so many special nieces and nephews from around the country. A true celebration of Don’s life will be held on Saturday, December 30, 2017 at 11:00 am at Carolina Memorial Funeral Home, 7113 Rivers Ave, North Charleston, SC. The family will receive friends and relatives one hour prior to the service (10:00 am) at the funeral home. Entombment will follow the funeral service with Military Honors in the Carolina Memorial Park Mausoleum. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to your favorite charity. Don’s included Alzheimer’s, Highland Park Baptist, Epworth Orphanage and St Jude’s.