Family, Friends Celebrate Life of Deshon Johnson

The Montclair student was killed at a Bloomfield intersection last week.


Deshon L. Johnson, the 22-year-old Essex County College student killed by a NJ Transit bus last week, aspired to be a singer, rapper, artist, and writer—all while pursuing a college degree.

"He was a talented man who knew what he wanted to do with his life," said a friend, Matt Fernandez. "He was very driven and very motivated."

Johnson's life was celebrated today during a church service at Christ Church in Montclair.

Born March 5, 1990 in Newark, Johnson was raised in East Orange and was the only child of Naomi Johnson.

As a youngster, he was so talented at art that his paintings were displayed at the Montclair Art Museum when he was in the sixth grade.

Later, Johnson and his mother moved to Montclair, where he graduated from Montclair High School.

After Naomi Johnson was involved in a serious car accident, Deshon Johnson stayed close to home and enrolled in Kean University, majoring in business finance. Due to financial hardships, though, he left Kean and began attending Essex County College, spending his spare time writing and recording music.

In addition to family members, many young people attended the service today as women walked up and down the church's aisles, passing out tissues.

Before the service started, a slideshow displaying images of Deshon Johnson as a young boy was projected onto two separate screens.

"Naomi Johnson had her own accident when she was hit by a car years ago ... and her wonderful son gave up his own ambitions to stay with his mom and help her recover," said Deputy Mayor Bob Russo, a family friend. "That is a wonderful thing, and to lose him like this is a heartbreak."

Russo spoke at today's service, after which a poem was read by a family friend titled "Mother's Love."

"No matter what, I will always be here for you with my eternal love, regardless; if I am on earth or in the heavens above. With Love, from your mother."

On Wednesday morning, July 18, Johnson was rushing to catch the #709 bus to get to his job in Bloomfield when he was struck and killed by a NJ Transit Bus at Broad Street and Bay Avenue.

According to NJ Transit, an investigation into the incident is still ongoing. 


EILEEN July 25, 2012 at 03:54 PM
so sad...
Meg Beattie Patrick July 26, 2012 at 04:18 AM
Sending prayers, solace and peace of mind to his mother, family and friends. RIP Deshon.
Robin Hoffman July 26, 2012 at 12:56 PM
My heart breaks for his mom. Sounds like she did an amazing job and raised a wonderful, young man. Gone way too soon.
EILEEN July 26, 2012 at 08:59 PM
Even though I did not know him, I stood outside the church to pray and show respect for that young man. He will always be with his Mom to take care of her.... Prayers for both.
James Little August 11, 2012 at 06:11 AM
Deshon was simply waiting at the bus stop on his way to work and the bus just didn't stop and drove right past him, coming onto the curb and killing my brother. We will be protesting the town of Bloomfield and NJ transit this Wednesday August 15th, which will be 1 month since our brother has walked this earth. The protest will start around 10am and we will be at the corner he was killed on, which is the intersection of Broad St & Bay St. in Bloomfield, NJ. The mother, family, and close friends will all be in attendance and we welcome any one else who is willing to show some support with us. We are not satisfied with how Bloomfield, and NJ transit both are treating the situation and we demand justice. If you can make it at 10am please do, we need all the support we can get. Thank you all for your support. If you have a facebook go to http://www.facebook.com/JusticeForDeshonJohnson


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