We just learned that former Assemblymember and Senator Ross Johnson died a few hours ago. Ross was the legislator who carried the ball for many years to establish Chino Hills State Park—from its earliest days through the acquisition of Coal Canyon.
“I was driving by Yorba Linda one day and I saw the future and I didn’t like it. I knew we needed to save something for our region.” — Ross Johnson
As a Republican, he worked across party lines to garner funding for the State Park. Acquisition strategy was also important to him. We worked together to figure out which parcel to buy next. There have been 34 acquisitions over 36 years making it the most complicated set of acquisitions in state park history. Ross traded away favors to get more funding to establish this wonderful resource for California. While representing Newport Beach, he still supported Chino Hills State Park.
There would be no park without him. He was faithful in every way—at every moment. Whenever we needed him, he was there. Today, Chino Hills State Park is 14,107 acres strong and a lot of it is because of the tenacity, effectiveness, and faithfulness of Ross. If you are on this email list you are enjoying the fruits of his labor.
When you look at the hills tonight please say a prayer for his family and send aloft a prayer of gratitude that this very precious human being came our way and gave us all this gift of beauty and respite.