Dr. Paul Alfred Johns Jr.
January 26, 1928 – April 10, 2019
Dr. Paul Alfred Johns, Jr, DPM, 91 years old, passed away Tuesday April 9, 2019 at Edgewater Retirement Community in West Des Moines, Iowa after a brief illness. He is now reunited with his much-missed wife of 60 years, Mary, who predeceased him 4 months earlier. Prior to his recent heart problems, Paul was blessed with outstanding health for all of his 91 years and was able to truly enjoy life. There will be a private family service and entombment at Resthaven Mausoleum in West Des Moines, Iowa. At a later date, there will be a celebration of Paul and Mary’s life’s for family and friends.
Paul was born to Paul and Katherine Johns at Iowa Lutheran Hospital in Des Moines on January 26, 1928. He graduated from East High School and Grandview College in Des Moines. He then received his Doctor of Podiatric Medicine (DPM) degree in 1954 from The Illinois College of Chiropody and Foot Surgery in Chicago. Upon graduation, he was awarded the Henry L. DuVries Award for Proficiency in Clinical Surgery. After graduation, he enlisted in The United States Army, serving Our Country in Washington, D.C. Prior to enlisting in the United States Army, Paul also served in the Iowa National Guard. While serving at the Pentagon, Paul met and married his wife Mary in 1958. After completion of his military service, Paul and Mary moved to south Des Moines where they resided the majority of their lives.
Paul practiced podiatry in Des Moines for 50 years, the majority of years as a solo podiatrist providing primary foot care as well as surgery. He truly loved his profession and the practice of podiatry, but most of all he enjoyed his relationships with his patients. With the lengthy duration of his practice, he cared for multiple generations within families under his care. While maintaining his active practice, Paul was involved in the establishment of the College of Podiatric Medicine and Surgery in Des Moines, where he was an instructor and preceptor for many years. In addition, he taught classes at the College of Osteopathic Medicine and Surgery in Des Moines. He truly enjoyed teaching and being a preceptor to countless medical students and podiatric medical students over the years. His podiatric surgical skills and judgement were held in high regard by the referring physician community. As such, he was the first podiatrist in Des Moines to have full admitting and surgical privileges as Iowa Methodist Medical Center and associated outpatient surgery facility, West Des Moines Day Surgery Center. Paul was past President of the Iowa Podiatric Medical Society where he was a 50-year member and also served on the Iowa Board of Podiatry. Until the age of 85, he unfailingly attended the annual meetings of both the Iowa Podiatric Medical Society and the Midwest Podiatry Conference in Chicago.
Through Mary’s love of travel, Paul saw the world, including Europe, Russia, Africa and China in his younger years. A long-time, avid Hawkeye football fan, Paul and Mary attended many bowl games in California and Florida over the years as well. As lifelong animal lovers, Paul and Mary loved all animals and rescued many dogs and cats.
But most importantly in life, as the mark of a great man, he was a devoted husband to Mary and her caretaker in her final months as well as outstanding father to his three sons. His discussions, advice and counsel to his sons up until the end of his life was practical, pointed, relevant, motivational and memorable. Paul loved people and always had a friendly disarming demeanor, smile and kind words. He will be greatly missed by his family and any he had contact with.
Paul is survived by his sister, Shirley; sons, Paul (Michelle) of Bondurant, IA, Dr. David (Laurie) of West Des Moines, IA, and Steven (Anne) of Pleasant Hill, IA; seven grandchildren; one great grandchild; and his cat, Taz. He was preceded in death by his wife, Mary; parents; Paul and Kathryn; sister, Betty; and many furry friends.
Memorial contributions can made to the Animal Rescue League of Iowa.
- Paul is survived by his sister, Shirley; sons, Paul (Michelle) of Bondurant, IA, Dr. David (Laurie) of West Des Moines, IA, and Steven (Anne) of Pleasant Hill, IA; seven grandchildren; one great grandchild; and his cat, Taz. He was preceded in death by his wife, Mary; parents; Paul and Kathryn; sister, Betty; and many furry friends.