Murrieta Man Dies in Head-On Collision

Richard "Dick" Johnson, 84, of the La Cresta area west of Murrieta, died shortly after the car he was driving was hit head-on. The crash occurred at 8:50 p.m. Wednesday in the 38900 block of Clinton Keith Road.

UPDATE 2 p.m. July 7: The driver of the pick-up in the accident is expected to survive his injuries, Murrieta Police said Thursday.

Investigators with the Murrieta Police Department have ordered toxicology tests on the driver, as they suspect alcohol could have been a factor in the accident, said Murrieta police Lt. Tony Conrad.

Toxicology reports can take weeks to process. If results come back positive, the driver could potentially face charges, the lieutenant said.


An elderly Murrieta man died late Wednesday when the car he was driving was hit head-on.

Richard "Dick" Johnson, 84, was pronounced dead at 9:33 p.m., shortly after he was rushed to Inland Valley Medical Center to be treated for life-threatening injuries suffered in the crash, according to the Riverside County Coroner's office.

At about 8:50 p.m., Johnson was driving an older model Lincoln sedan, traveling in the 38900 block of Clinton Keith Road near Cal Fire/Riverside County Station No. 75.

Traveling in the opposite direction was the driver of a pick-up truck, which hit Johnson head on, according to the coroner's office.

The Murrieta Police Department is handling the crash investigation.

The driver of the pick-up truck, a 44-year-old man, also suffered critical injuries. No word on his condition was available.

Johnson was a longtime La Cresta resident and a horseman, friends said. He owned a ranch property known as Diamond J Ranch. Retired, Johnson formerly owned a car dealership in Orange County. He had a large family and was married.

Holly July 14, 2011 at 06:29 PM
What a terrible loss of a wonderful man, I feel blessed and thankful to of known him. Holly Sik
Betty Robles July 15, 2011 at 02:44 AM
I did not know Dick Johnson. I was two cars in back when the accident happend. I saw Dick Monday driving his truck in the 4th of July Parade in La Cresta and said hi to him. I am soooo sadden to learn that it was him. I know he is in heaven with our Lord and I know he will be greatly missed. Betty Robles
Fay Dorn July 18, 2011 at 05:10 AM
I met Dick as I was doing my daily walk past his home. He was on horseback and rode up to me introduced himself and invited me to stop by his home to meet his wife as he related that she was wheelchair bound and they would both be delighted for my company. He was one of the most warmest and most hospitable person I've ever met since moving to La Cresta 2 years ago. Today I slowed to read the sign posted along the hiway and saw his name and my heart as been heavy eversince. My sincere condolences to his family. He was a wonderful person. Fay Dorn
shirley rowley hoff February 28, 2012 at 09:25 PM
Dear Nina and family, I have known Dick since the early 50's when he lived in Bellflower and had the Studebaker agency and I worked for his father Clyde once in a while when I was in college and dated Dick briefly.and enjoyed some wonderful discussions.. When I ran into him many years ago, I was so happy to learn he had married a wonderful gal with great values and could see he had finally found true happiness and he had some small children that he was so proud of. Such a sad passing of a wonderful human being who always cared for others. He will be sorely missed by all who knew him. I am so happy to learn that in his later years he returned to his love of the rural Kansas type life that he was able to enjoy with the love of his life and his children. May G-d bless and comfort you all. Love, Shirley Rowley Hoff p. s. the pictures on the internet were a wonderful memorial and done so tastefully. I presume the other lady in the wheel chair was his sister, Margie. Please extend my condolences to her, also.
Renee Handsaker August 21, 2012 at 10:38 PM
Dick Johnson I will Miss you So and i will miss all of your Family Too !!!! Sincerely Renee H


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