Carolyn Elaine Johanson

carolyn johanson

July 21, 1943 ~ November 17, 2006

Resided in: Rye, CO

Carolyn Elaine Johanson passed from this life to eternal peace November 17, 2006, following a courageous and dignified fight with Huntington Chorea and a recent diagnosis of ALS. Her parents, Wayne and Helen Tinkel of Mishawaka, Indiana; brother, Dale L. Tinkel; and granddaughter, Emily Irene Rainiero precede her in death. Carolyn Johanson (Tinkel) graduated from John Adams High School, Mishawaka, Indiana in 1962, attended Indiana University for two years (1972/3), and earned her Paralegal certification in 1986. She was selected in 1977 as one of the 'Outstanding Young Women of America'. Carolyn was noted for her groundbreaking efforts in women's rights, and her strength in advocating and supporting family rights. She was the first woman police officer in the city of South Bend, IN, where she served honorably and with distinction for seven years. She was a charter member of the International Association of Women Police Officers. Her last position was court monitor for the Social Security Administration. Carolyn met Raymond Johanson while both were attending classes at Indiana University, and they were married on August 23, 1975, in South Bend, IN. She was a staunch supporter of her husband's US NAVY career, and while they were stationed at Subic Bay Naval Base, Philippines, Carolyn designed, established and served as the Director of the US Navy's very first Family Advocacy Center, which became the prototype for all subsequent military family support centers and family advocacy centers worldwide. She was also the humble recipient of numerous several letters of commendation from the South Bend Police Department, the US NAVY and the US AIR FORCE for her exceptional work. She is survived by her husband, Raymond and their 4 children: Ben Johanson of South Carolina, his wife, Gail and their 2 daughters, Ashley and Taylor; Gregory Johanson of Logan, UT, his two children, Joshua and Amber; Cheryl McDaniel, her husband Michael and two children Brittany and Brian, and Wendy Rainiero, her husband David and their two children, Olivia and Leo. Also surviving her are her four brothers, Terry Tinkel of North Carolina, Dean Tinkel of Mishawaka, IN, Keith Tinkel of New Carlisle, IN, and Roger Tinkel of Plymouth, IN. Funeral services will be at the St Aloysius Church in Rye, CO on Tuesday, November 21, at 1:00 P.M. Those who desire may make memorials to YWCA Women's Crisis Center or YWCA Counseling Program through Montgomery & Steward Funeral Directors, 1317 N. Main St., Pueblo, Colo. 81003. Online condolences,

View current weather.

Memories Timeline


  1. Uncle Ray and Family,
    Our thoughts and love are with all of you during this hard time. Aunt Carolyn was one of a kind and her smile will never be forgotten. We love you.

  2. You were one of a kind. During our Colorado visit, we had some good times and good laughs. We loved you dearly. You will be missed always. Peace and Love

  3. Carolyn had been part of Dean’s life from the day he was born. She also became Terri’s sister when Dean & Terri wed in 1965. Through all those years; in good times & bad, she was very special to both of us. We will never forget our wonderful last visit from Nov. 10th through Nov. 12th. How we all laughed and cried that weekend. And we will always remember Carolyn clapping her hands and saying “I AM SO HAPPY!

  4. Ray & Family,

    Sharing in your grief and sorrow in the passing of Carolyn. She will be missed and never forgotten! You are all in our prayers.
    We love you.
    Ingrid, Robert & Aunt Hilda

  5. Raymond

    Words don’t seem sufficient to describe how saddened we feel about Carolyn’s passing after her heroic battles with her illnesses. What an awesome woman!

    The wonderful memories we have of all our times together are giving us some comfort during this time. We hope the same is true for you. Of course our greatest comfort is in knowing she is in God’s loving arms now.

    We love you and will continue to uplift you and the family in our prayers during this difficult time.

    Randy & Linda

  6. With the passing of my Mother I want to thank my Dad, brother and sisters for the uplifting and strong support I Love you all.May all of our hearts grow to the next level Together with Mom looking over us. To family and friends you have been so supportive Thank you.

  7. Dear Ray,

    I am so sorry to hear of Carolyn’s death. She was a wonderful person with whom I know you shared many lovely years.

    I hope you are taking comfort in the love and devotion that you showered on her until the end.

    Sincerely and with love,

  8. It was with great sadness that we learned of Carolyn’s passing. She will be greatly missed at our family gatherings and we share in your grief and sadness at this time.
    Love to you all!
    ‘Cuzzins’ Naureen, Chuck, Stephen & Brian

  9. I am a friend of Greg Johanson and sad to hear of Moms passing. Just from what I have learned of her through Greg and having read her memorial, she sounds like a incredible woman, and one whom will be dearly missed.
    May God be with you and comfort your family during this time of sorrow. Draw near to one another and the Lord and let the love of both bring comfort.

  10. On behalf of the Brothers of Harmony Lodge#21 Masons we offer our condolences to your family at this difficult time.

  11. Raymond and Family,
    My prayers and thoughts are with your family during this time of grief. Carolyn will surely be missed by all. We love you guys and will be here to support you in anyway that we can.

  12. My God this hurts. I miss you mommy and I am so sorry for the wrongs done and cheer the memories made. My eternal love,


  13. Ray,
    From a friend of many years ago… I only had the privilege of meeting Carolyn once at a class reunion. Y’all made a great couple and I am truly sorry for your loss. Please take solace in God’s promise at Psalms 37:11 and Revelation 21:4.

    ‘Thinking of an old friend during a difficult time.

    Dick Nelson

  14. Dearest Ray and family,

    Our thoughts are with you and we will always remember the times with Carolyn, although brief, throughout the years. Class reunions, Mom and Dad’s anniversary party and of course, her graciousness putting up the tired bikers in Colorado. Distance may separate us but our hearts and hugs are with you. Always with love and memories.


  16. Raymond and Family,

    So sorry for your loss. Carolyn has been a friend since high school at John Adams. We will all miss her.


  17. Ray and Family…
    Carolyn’s passing is a reminder once again of how short life is, and why it’s so important that we live and love life to its fullest as we cherish our families and dear friends. Obviously, Carolyn did. May God watch over her and her gang during this difficult time, and may the countless happy Carolyn memories start bringing sunshine back to your lives soon. We love and miss her — Bill & Kris

  18. Dear Ray and Family,
    We were so sorry to learn of Carolyn’s illness. We will always remember her riding her 4-wheeler and offering to give our kids (then tiny, now teenagers)a ride. We were out of town for her funeral service, but we wanted you to know we were thinking of her. We will make a donation to the YWCA in her memory. Sincerely, Jack and Linda

  19. My dearest friend Raymond,

    It saddened my heart today to read the news of Carolyn’s passing. The two of you are a staple sign of what true love really is. It was truely a joy to get to know her, and you, and share with you the reasons you two were learning ASL. You touched all of our hearts, and know that my heart aches with yours with the news of her death.

    In love and Peace.

  20. Ray, my heart goes out to you and your family. Carol and you had become a very important part of our family. The gratitude can not be expressed for the love and caring you both gave my sister and our family. It was truly an honor and pleasure to have met Carol and you.
    God Bless You and your family.
    with love
    Jo Anna Gomez and Tim Hunter

  21. Ray, my heart went out to you when I read of your wife’s death. My heartfelt sympathy and prayers are with you and yours.

Sign the Guestbook, Light a Candle

  1. CandleImage
  2. CandleImage
  3. CandleImage
  4. CandleImage
  5. CandleImage
  6. CandleImage
  7. CandleImage
  8. CandleImage