Cover photo for Mona Berva (Opperud) Johnston's Obituary
1932 Mona 2022

Mona Berva (Opperud) Johnston

December 10, 1932 — December 18, 2022

Rio Rancho


Mona Berva (Opperud) Johnston was brought into this world on December 10th, 1932 in Williston, North Dakota. Her father, Leon Perlin Opperud, and mother, Agnes Florence Feeney, welcomed their first baby girl. 


At age 5, Mona became a big sister when Leanne was born and later, at age 12, became the oldest of three when Peggy was born. She lived a blessed life growing up in the small town of Alamo, North Dakota with a driven and hard-working father and an equally hard-working and loving mother. She excelled in school and graduated as valedictorian of Alamo High School. She enrolled in nursing school at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Minot, North Dakota where she soon met Richard Darrell Johnston at a Minot State College dance. The two fell in love and married shortly thereafter in Hanks, North Dakota, beginning what would become a lasting love of 72 years and beyond. 


Mona called many places home throughout her life: North Dakota, Kansas, Minnesota, Montana, Colorado, and New Mexico. She made every place a warm home for family. Mona and Richard had three girls Renee, Lisa, and Becky, and three boys Scott, Rick, and Mike. She was the kind of mother that encouraged her children to explore, play, and learn by asking questions. She was an outlet to her children for intellectual thought and open-mindedness. Her family grew and she became the idyllic grandmother to many. A visit always included board games, fresh-baked treats, and the warmest smiles.


Mona loved to travel and see new places, old places, family, and nature. She and Richard traveled the U.S. over the years by car, train, RV, and even their two-seater Taylorcraft plane from time to time. Yet Mona loved few things more than a good book; she adored reading and especially enjoyed fiction works from authors like Jan Karon, James Herriot, and dozens of others. 


Preceded in death by Agnes and Leon Opperud plus many friends and family, Mona is survived by four generations including siblings Peggy and Leanne; children Renee & Jim Loehr, Scott and Melissa Johnston, Rick Johnston, Lisa and Ron Weber, Mike Johnston, and Becky and Andy Pierce; ten grandchildren (Emily, Brandy, Paul, Katie, Zachary, Ronnie, Rachel, Mary, Forest, and AJ); and eight great-grandchildren (Fisher, Trent, Violet, Maggie, Russel, Lacey, Ruth, Noelle, and Ruby). 


A source of light and love for so many, Mona left this world peacefully on Sunday, December 18th, 2022. Her Ashes will be returned to the earth on a family plot in North Dakota.


Gifts may be made in Mona’s honor to the non-profit La Puente Home in Alamosa, Colorado at


To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Mona Berva (Opperud) Johnston, please visit our flower store.


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