Not many people stay with one job today for 20 or 30 years, much less do it with a smile on their face and a laugh that is infectious.
Dagmar Peery Johnson is one of those people and she has done just that.
Dagmar started working at The Edmond Sun in January 1991. She retired Nov. 19 after working for 28 years in various departments of the newspaper.
She said she wasn’t looking for a job on a newspaper when a lead from another interview steered her toward The Edmond Sun.
“When I started I worked in accounts receivable posting payments and entering new ads for publication, and month-end billing,” Johnson said.
She switched to accounts payable and payroll over the years, and in the last few years she has been working with legal notices, which includes the ads themselves and billing them out, plus still posting payments.
The Edmond Sun’s General Manager Lance Moler said, “I can always count on Dagmar. She is very detailed oriented and you know if you give her a job it is going to get done.”
Moler added that Dagmar is always really happy, and a pleasure to be around.
Prior to coming to The Edmond Sun, she worked at Rothschild's for 10 years in the sales audit department.
“I also worked at a movie theatre as the manager,” she said.
“And way back when, I worked for the FBI in Washington, D.C., as a fingerprint examiner,” Johnson said. “That was waaaay before all the CSI programs and computer matching of fingerprints. There were some name matches on computer, but not the fingerprints themselves.”
Since she started working at the newspaper she said the size of the staff has changed, and the newspaper, once a hard copy only, has added digital including a web site, digital eEdition, and The Edmond Sun App, as well as a committed outreach on social media.
Dagmar said she considers the people she works with her daytime family.
The biggest news story she can remember during her time working at the newspaper was the Murrah Building bombing.
“One of my friends from a club I belonged to was killed in the blast,” she said.
NEW MARRIAGE, NEW LIFE
Dagmar just celebrated her second anniversary with her new husband, Robert Johnson.
“Robert and I met online,” Dagmar said. “He found me four hours and nine minutes after he joined the same dating site where I was trying to cancel my subscription. He reached out to me and I didn't answer the first day. He reached out again the second day and I replied. After we met and started dating, I asked him if he would have reached out a third time. He said no, he would have moved on.”
A few weeks after they had started dating they found they have one friend in common.
“It turned out be my roommate from college 40-plus years ago,” Dagmar said. “I had lost contact with her over the years. I reconnected with her by phone and chatted with her. She verified for me that Robert was not an axe murderer,” Dagmar added laughing.
Dagmar said she wouldn’t have retired had she not had Robert in her life.
“This trade has rewards that I didn't foresee a few years ago,” Dagmar said. “I used to work at the Edmond Library for 19 years. Three weeks after I left the library, I met Robert. If I had still been working there, I would not have had time to date anyone.”
Prior to marrying Robert, Dagmar was married to Jim Elvis Peery for 38 years.
“He died unexpectedly on the first day of our vacation four years ago,” Dagmar said. “We have a daughter, Ily Peery Murdock, and four grandsons, and they live out of state.”
Dagmar said she and Robert married two years ago.
“His wife, Virginia, died six days after Jim, on the last day of their vacation,” Dagmar said. “Hence, Robert and I do not take vacations. We go on outings, roamings, walkabouts, etc.”
Robert has two children, a daughter, Kris, recently deceased, and a son, Logan.
“With Kris's passing recently, that was the catalyst for retiring,” Dagmar said. “Since Robert and I met as senior citizens, not knowing how many years we might have, we want to spend more time together.”
The couple has been traveling back and forth between Edmond and Ada every weekend for two years.
“He’s already retired and working on projects in Ada that he has wanted to tackle for years, and now he has the time,” Dagmar said. “Currently he is replacing the roof on the house. Last week the house in Ada was hit by lightning, and he is working on getting all the electronics replaced or repaired.”
Plans for the immediate future for Dagmar include getting some repairs/remodeling done to the house in Edmond.
“It includes a lot of things that I never had time to deal with while working,” Dagmar said.
In her spare time she enjoys quilting and photography.
“I got a smartphone a couple of years ago and I take lots of pictures with it. My good camera has taken a back seat for the time being,” Dagmar said. “I have also done volunteer work over the years with LibertyFest, the Food Bank, and the YMCA.”
In the future Dagmar said she contemplates working in the nursery of a hospital and rocking babies.
“It’s comforting to snuggle a baby and then when the shift is over, I can go home,” she said.