Listen: Taylor's Market owner Danny Johnson talks candidly about the addiction that took the life of his wife of nearly 40 years on February 10, 2023. She was 58.
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From Taylor's Market Facebook page:
Kathy Johnson was born on November 28, 1964, in Auburn, California, and resident of Sacramento where she died on February 10, 2023.
Kathy was a beloved daughter, wife, mother, sister, aunt, cousin, and friend to so many. She was known for so many things, but her kind heart and generous spirit were the essence of who she was and what will never be forgotten.
Kathy married her first and only love, Danny Johnson, whom she first met at 6 years old. After years of friendship and courtship, they married in 1983. Their daughters, Felicia and Lillian were her pride and joy.
Kathy’s creative talent was endless. She was a fabulous chef and an extraordinary hostess. Invitations to the legendary events and dinner parties she relished in throwing were highly coveted. She was an exceptional seamstress, absolutely adored fashion, and had an extra special place in her heart for shoes!
She loved a good cup of coffee while reading an Anne Rice novel. She enjoyed walks to the farmer's market and then home to cook elaborate recipes with her family. She enjoyed spending quality time at the nail salon chatting with her daughters and was always excited to head to the movie theatre to see a new scary movie & eat popcorn! Fridays were floral market day. She would pick out the best, most beautiful flowers and put together stunning arrangements for the restaurant. She was an Opera season ticket holder and needed no excuse to jump on a plane to New York to catch a Broadway show. Hamilton was her most recent favorite!
Kathy’s passion for travel and avid curiosity for exploring family ancestry merged and dictated itineraries for countless travel adventures that took her all over the world with family and friends. She and Danny loved discovering new cities together; spending days exploring museums and evenings dining at extraordinary restaurants that would serve as inspiration for her culinary creations. The innumerable adventures they shared are evident in their home which is full of cherished memories, and unique and beautiful antiques from all over the world. She created a beautiful home that is a reflection of her bold style and spirit.
Kathy was an involved member of the community and with her love of art, was honored to have been asked to chair the Crocker Ball for two consecutive years. Kathy’s philanthropic spirit was simply a part of who she was. She was passionate about many social issues and never shied away from fiery debates about what mattered most to her.
Kathy was the co-owner of Taylor’s Market and Taylor’s Kitchen with her husband Danny. She was an integral part of the success and reputation Taylor’s earned over the years. Her personal touches can be seen in every corner of the business and her grace touched the lives of her Taylor’s family.
Kathy leaves behind a loving family and countless friends, who will miss her sense of humor, laugh, and beautiful smile deeply. She is survived by her husband Danny Johnson and their daughters, Felicia, Lillian, and Felicia’s wife, Annette. She leaves behind four loving cats, Dorian, Casey, notZeis, and Trudy.
In the days since Kathy’s death, she has been described by many as a bright light. That is so true. What is also true is that Kathy suffered from a pervasive and insidious disease that often goes unnamed in obituaries. It is hidden under phrases like sudden and unexpected passing when the reality is there is nothing sudden or unexpected about it.
Kathy died from mental illness and alcohol addiction. Conditions that have lived in the shadows for far too long only further stigmatizing a disease that is misunderstood and often dismissed as a weakness or personal failing. It is neither.
Kathy deftly hid her battle with addiction from most, but she would want her life, as well as her death, to bring light to the shadows, illuminating the darkness that too many of us silently sit alone in, the darkness that ultimately engulfed her and took her from us.
Kathy had a supportive and loving family who she adored. She had an extraordinary life. She had things to look forward to. She had every reason to live. She had resources and access to treatment. Addiction still won. Addiction does not discriminate. No one is immune.
Kathy’s addiction does not define her life - but it ended it. It stole her sparkle and left those who loved her brokenhearted yet determined not to turn our backs on this epidemic and the countless families who find themselves in the same situation.
Time will tell exactly what that will look like, but for now, it means simply telling the truth and dispelling the stigma and shame that are unjustly associated with mental illness and addiction.
Kathy Johnson was an extraordinary woman with an amazing life who died from addiction. She was loved tremendously and she will forever be missed.