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Patrolman Paul Johnson

Paul H. Johnson was born on September 3, 1917, in Seattle to Gustave H. Johnson and Gunhild Jansson. One of seven children, Johnson attended school in Arlington and Seattle, graduating from Ballard High School in 1936. He was an accomplished trumpet player who often played at church and in a trio with his two brothers on the radio.

Johnson worked as a shipping clerk at a Seattle based retailer in 1940, before serving four years and three months in the United States Army during World War II. He was mainly stationed at Kodiak, Alaska, as a member of the military police.


His career with the Washington State Highway Patrol began as a clerk in Wenatchee on August 5, 1946. He was later a member of the 14th cadet class and commissioned as a patrolman on October 1, 1946. Patrolman Johnson was assigned to Olympia, then transferred to North Bend, Renton, Seattle, and back to North Bend in 1949.


Patrolman Paul Johnson died on December 12, 1949, at the age of 32. Patrolman Johnson died of a gunshot wound after responding to a neighborhood disturbance near Snoqualmie. At the time of his death, Patrolman Johnson had served three years with the Washington State Patrol.


Patrolman Johnson's younger brother, Harold, passed away in December 2019, and Harold's wife Ester, lives in Duvall. Ruby, Trooper Johnson's sister, passed away in February 2017. His other brother, Alvin, passed away in December 2017.


In May of 1998, Patrolman Johnson was awarded the Medal of Honor, posthumously, for his actions on December 12, 1949, by the Law Enforcement – Medal of Honor Committee.


On Friday, May 20, 2016, a dedication ceremony of a memorial to honor and remember King County Troopers was held at the Bellevue District Office. When you visit the Bellevue District Office, take a moment to stop by the beautiful memorial that was created in remembrance of King County Troopers.


Patrolman Johnson, and the other thirty-one WSP fallen officers, will be honored at the WSP Memorial Foundation dinner on July 15, 2023, at the Three Rivers Convention Center in Kennewick, WA.


Please take a moment to remember Patrolman Johnson and his family.


Wreath laying ceremony on December 13, 2019 at the WSP Office in Bellevue to honor Patrolman Paul Johnson who died in the line of duty 70 years ago.

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Memorial dedicated Paul H. Johnson, located at the Bellevue District Office.

Washington State Highway patrol Patrolman Paul H. Johnson 
End of Watch – December 12, 1949
Gone But Never Forgotten

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