By Karla Prudhomme
Johnson County lost a valued treasure last week with the passing of Howard Moon- a dedicated volunteer, tireless community worker, and ardent county advocate. Settling in Johnson County in 1999 after retirement and worldwide travel, Howard and his wife Linda wasted no time getting involved in their new community. Howard was an active volunteer, working tirelessly on the Laurel Creek Trails, serving in the Mountain City Rotary Club, serving in his Church, working with the children at the Johnson County/Mountain City Community Center, and tutoring countless Johnson County school students.
Howard was a familiar face at Johnson County/Mountain City Community Center’s after-school program and Oak Tree Day Camp. For almost twenty years, he and his wife Linda spent countless hours volunteering their time and unique talents by helping after-school children complete their homework, tutoring those who needed extra help, and entertaining the kids with his endless repertoire of delightful stories. “When we had kids who needed special care, Howard was there,” said Community Center Director Flo Bellamy. “Howard had a heart for these children and their families, and he and Linda would often visit their homes, showing up with pizza and ice cream just to let them know they mattered and that he and Linda cared about them- he was a special man.”
Former Johnson County Mayor Larry Potter stated that Howard’s relentless efforts to complete the Laurel Creek Trail was a monumental feat, as Howard spearheaded the effort and never wavered in his determination to see it completed. “When you cross the Laurel Creek Trail bridge, you can’t help but think of Howard Moon,” the former Mayor stated.
Howard Moon’s mathematical genius was known throughout the county, and Howard tutored countless students in this challenging subject- young and old alike.
Second, only to his ability to teach in a way that made learning fun for the students was that the students loved him. If there was a need for his help, he was never too busy- he was incredibly generous with his time and talents. Not one to sit about, Howard was also a substitute teacher for Johnson County Schools, and according to Mayor Mike Taylor, a former teacher in the local school system, Howard was someone he knew he could count on to take over and teach his classes when needed.
The Johnson County Community, as a whole, lost a true treasure with the passing of Howard Moon.