Michael Hale Johnston

March 15, 1947December 1, 2018
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Michael Hale Johnston, AKA, Big Mike, Crunch, Captain Mike and Papaw passed away December 1, 2018. He was born on March 15th, 1947 in Waco, Texas to his beloved parents Matthew Hale Johnston Jr. and Dorothy Teel Johnston. Raised in Hull-Daisetta, Texas, Mike was a renaissance man with deep SE Texas roots. He was a life member and former president of the Hugh B. Johnston Chapter #1 of the Sons of the Republic of Texas, and had great pride in his history and heritage. During his life he played the role of grocery store clerk, football player, cowboy, woodsman, boat captain, and one of the finest trial attorneys in the state of Texas. He was a son, brother, father, grandfather and friend to countless people. He was a star athlete at Hull-Daisetta High School, gaining accolades and accomplishments in many sports. He loved the game of football, earning the nickname of Crunch for the many helmets he broke while playing linebacker. He was part of one of the most successful teams in Hull-Daisetta history. Mike then went on to the University of Houston to play middle linebacker, where he was part of one of the greatest classes in U of H football history. After graduating, he enrolled in South Texas College of Law, to pursue his law degree. He became a founding partner in the law firm Sullins, Johnston, Rohrbach and Magers, P.C. Mike and his wife Lynda were married 47 years and had 7 children and 8 grandchildren. He never failed to wear his loving and generous heart on his sleeve and give all he could to those around him. He was just as comfortable wearing his rubber boots and coveralls as he was in his shined oxfords and pressed suit and tie, switching from a Rolex to an old Timex, putting down the fancy ballpoint pen at the office, and picking up his old compass to head to the Big Thicket. He loved being the host, hunting and camping at Blau Gully and getting out into the Gulf of Mexico to play fishing captain for family and friends. He did these activities with the sole purpose of providing good times to others. He did not hunt deer so he could kill one and he did not fish so that he could catch one. That was for others, he just wanted to provide the opportunity. He was the brilliant tactician in the courtroom and doting teddy bear father when he got home. He was loved by all, and truly cherished by his family and friends. His warm, loving smile, and generous nature will not be forgotten.

He is survived by wife Lynda Johnston, daughters Michele Johnston Cox and husband Brad, Amy Johnston Carmichael and husband Jeff and Julie Nicole Johnston. Sons William (B.J.) Johnston and wife Jenny, Matthew Grant Johnston and wife Erin, Travis Lee Johnston and wife Lauren, and Cody Michael Johnston. Grandchildren William, Cameron and Kathryn Cox, Violet Carmichael, Charlotte and Tara Johnston, Madeleine and Blair Johnston, sister Carolyn Devine and husband William, brother Dan Johnston and wife Tammy, numerous nephews, nieces and cousins. Lifelong friends include those from Hull-Daisetta, The University of Houston, Riders of Wagon 7 on the Saltgrass Trail Ride, and numerous fishing buddies. He is preceded in death by his parents Matthew Hale Johnston, Jr. and Dorothy Teel Johnston, and his infant daughter, Emma Johnston.

Funeral Service will be held at 12:00 pm, Wednesday, December 5, 2018 at Earthman Bellaire Funeral Home, 4525 Bissonnet St., Bellaire, TX 77401. Graveside Service will be at 1:00 pm, Thursday, December 6, 2018 at Guedry Cemetery in Batson, TX.


  • Funeral Service Wednesday, December 5, 2018
  • Graveside Service Thursday, December 6, 2018

Michael Hale Johnston

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Pam Humphreys-Bunch

December 5, 2018

Linda and family, I am soooo truly sorry for your loss of such a wonderful husband, father, grandfather and brother-in-law. Linda I am glad that you have a strong loving family that I know will stand by you and hold you up during this difficult time and times ahead as you heal from your loss of your beloved husband. I think and pray for you and your family often. God Bless you and your family along with Cindy and Dale and their families. Just know that God is holding you and He never lets go. Love you Linda

Pam and Boys, (Doug, Lee and Marty)

Darby Hopson

December 3, 2018

We were so devastated, to learn of Mikes death- he was always such a gentleman , with a twinkle in his eye. He will be missed, by all that knew him. Fondly, Darby Hopson and Charlie Gandy

Michelle Mascari

December 3, 2018

I am so sad to hear of Mike’s passing. The Magnificent 7 family will truly miss him.

Mark McLean

December 3, 2018

Mike volunteered to serve as a moot court judge at South Texas College of Law while I was a student there, and judged a contest I was competing in. He later hired me as a law clerk and then as a young lawyer working under his guidance. He was my mentor and, more than that, a true friend. My family and I are forever in his debt for the opportunities he unselfishly provided for us. The McLean family sends heartfelt condolences to the Johnston family for your loss. Big Mike will always be remembered by us as a caring, generous, larger-than-life man who filled the room wherever he was. May God in his infinite mercy bring Mike’s family peace.

Diana Barba

December 3, 2018

To the best 'Boss' ever - I love you and will miss you dearly. I had the best 12-1/2 years of my life working for you - Diana Barba

Nadine Kossow

December 2, 2018

Rest In Peace my friend