Larry and Candace Johnson
This scholarship is named in loving memory of Matthew Lars Johnson, son of Larry and Candace Johnson. Matthew started at Northern Illinois University in August of 1994 and graduated in December of 1999. He majored in OMIS and loved all his time here at Northern. After graduation, Matthew worked for two companies, both in transportation logistics. In 1990, just before his junior year in high school, he was diagnosed with cancer, which delayed him from starting college until he was twenty. He was very courageous and always positive about life. He wanted to make the best out of the life he was given. He didn’t want to be known as someone who had cancer. Matt tried his best in every challenge he faced. He had far too many challenges over those eleven years for someone so young and full of life. Matt had lost his hair after many cancer treatments. He didn’t want people to look at him differently but to look beyond and see the fun and interesting person inside. Matthew was a fighter and determined to chase his dreams until they became his reality. His family hopes to motivate the person who receives this scholarship to never give up and hope to make the journey to their dreams a little easier. “This scholarship made me realize that no matter what adversity you face in life, you should never give up and always focus on the positives in your life.” This is a quote from Pete, the first recipient of the Matthew L. Johnson scholarship. ’ It is through the generosity of Matthew’s parents, Larry and Candace Johnson, and his sister, Abby Penich, that this named scholarship is being established in his memory.