Rebekah Miles Johnston
Rebekah Miles Johnston, 84, of Graham, passed away Tuesday, October 29, 2019 at her home. A native of Burlington, Becky was a 1953 graduate of Williams High School. She attended Meredith College where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Music. After graduation, she returned to Burlington where she taught music education in Burlington Public Schools. In her early years, she assisted with the Burlington Boys Choir and played piano at Hocutt Memorial Baptist Church as well as teaching piano and voice lessons.
In 1960, Becky married Dr. Bennie Johnston and raised a family, and continued teaching music education in Graham Public Schools. As an active member of Graham Presbyterian Church, she was a Sunday school teacher, a youth group leader and a member of the church choir. In 1980, Becky became Music Director at Graham Presbyterian Church, serving for over 25 years. In her work with the Presbyterian Women of the church, she served as Chairman and Bible Leader of her circle, and volunteered for Meals on Wheels of Alamance County. In 1987, Becky received an Honorary Life Membership for Graham Presbyterian Church, from the Synod of NC, designated to women who work for the betterment of the church and community.
Becky was a supporter of ARC of Alamance County. As the mother of a child with special needs, she was an advocate and pioneer in the county for inclusion of special needs children in public schools. She was instrumental in the development and founding of Ralph Scott Life Services in Alamance County. In retirement, Becky fully immersed herself in being the quintessential grandmother to Alex, McNeil and Noelle, trying to cultivate future leaders in her own family.
Becky was preceded in death by her husband, Dr. Bennie Johnston, and son Mark Johnston, both of Graham; parents, Oscar and Ruby Miles and sister, Stasia Miles Ennis, all of Burlington; and sister, Barbara Miles Temple of Valdese. Surviving family members include a son, Miles M. Johnston and wife Kelly; granddaughters, McNeil and Noelle of Graham; a daughter, Benanne Johnston Stiens and husband Jerry of Graham; grandson, 2nd Lt. Carson “Alex” Stiens of Ft. Bragg, NC, currently deployed; sister-in-law, Sarah Graham Johnston of Graham; and many close nieces and nephews who she loved as if they were her own. Also, she loved an honorary sister, Bernice Sellars, a long time close friend and colleague of Becky’s mother, Ruby Miles.
There will be a private burial at Linwood Cemetery in Graham. A worship service in celebration of her life in commemoration of the resurrection of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will be held at Graham Presbyterian Church on Sunday, November 3, 2019 at 3:00 p.m. Visitation will be held by the family in the church parlor between 1:45 – 2:45 p.m. prior to the service.
Memorials may be made to a charity of choice.
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