The accomplishment marks the fifth hall of fame in which Johnson has been inducted, but I digress.
Born June 16, 1924 in Brattleboro, or as he calls it, "God's country," Ernest Thorwald Johnson's parents were Swedish immigrants.
His father, Thorwald and his mother, Alina "Inkie" Ingeborg, came to Brattleboro to work for the Estay Organ Company, the famed pipe-organ manufacturer.
Many other Swedish immigrants worked there and it was at the time, one of Vermont's largest employers. In fact, Thorwald would work there for the next 45 years.
Ernie was the youngest of three children and lived on Pleasant Street, in the neighborhood near the Estey factory called "Esteyville," where all the local kids were into sports. In fact, Ernie's first paying job was caddying at the local golf course.
Although he didn't play Little League baseball in Brattleboro (the first Little League field was not built until the early 50's) Ernie played baseball, football and basketball, mostly at the old Oak Grove School or at the hospital grounds, and by the time he reached high school, was thriving in baseball and basketball.
In fact, many thought the tall, lanky kid was a better at hoop then baseball, and Yale University was certainly interested in Johnson as a basketball player.
However, in his senior year at Brattleboro High, Johnson also flourished into a dominant pitcher. He finished that season with a 6-3 record and an amazing 1.09 ERA, while averaging a whopping 12 strikeouts a game.
This also included perhaps one of the most dominant three-game stretches in Vermont school boy history that saw Johnson throw a one-hit shutout against Springfield High School, then another one-hit shut out against Bellows Falls, before throwing two-hit shut out against Greenfield, MA in which he also struck out an amazing 20 batters.
Oh, and let's not forget to mention that Johnson also batted .409 and led the team in RBI's.
After high school, Ernie's Brattleboro High baseball coach, Ray Draghetti, brought him to a couple major league try outs for Casey Stengel's Boston Braves.
They liked what they saw and offered Johnson the choice of travelling with the big league team and throwing team batting practice (because there would be no opportunity for Ernie to play summer ball in Vermont) or to sign a contract and report to the minors.
He chose to travel with the team and was all of a sudden, Johnson found himself on the road and actually throwing batting practice to Major League hitters.
Before this time, Ernie had never even been to a Major League game in his life.
Then, a short time later, Johnson signed a minor league deal and went to pitch for the Braves Single-A Hartford team where he earned $125 per month and even got a $100 signing bonus!
However, in 1943, his baseball career would be interrupted as Johnson would join the U. S. Marines, serving three years in Okinawa during World War II.
After the war Ernie would marry Lois, a former cheerleader at Brattleboro High, in 1947. They will be married 64 years in November.
Johnson finally made his Major League debut in April of 1950, a relief appearance against the Phillies at Shibe Park in Philadelphia, and got his first win later that year against the New York Giants at the famed Polo Grounds.
Following another stint in the minor leagues in 1951, Johnson returned to the Majors in 1952 and over the next six years would lead the Braves (who would become the Milwaukee Braves in 1953) in relief appearances with 175.
He was also a significant contributor to the 1957 Braves championship team, registering a 7-3 record out of the bullpen with four saves.
After his playing days ended in 1959, his knowledge of the game and unique style landed Johnson his first television job as the host of "Play Ball," a local Milwaukee show, before moving into a commentator role on Braves radio broadcasts in 1962.
When the Braves finally moved to Atlanta in 1966, Johnson worked for the Braves front office, organizing the teams original radio broadcast network throughout the south. Ernie was undaunted in his loyalty for the Braves, remaining the broadcast voice through some very lean years throughout the 70's and 80's, however, when Ted Turner created "TBS Superstation" in 1973 and began carrying Braves games, Johnson became a household name for baseball fans across the country. He would broadcast Braves games for over 30 years.
Coming full circle and back to the aforementioned halls of fame, Ernie Johnson has now been elected to the Braves Hall of Fame, the Atlanta Sports Hall of Fame, both the Georgia Radio and TV Halls of Fame and now the aforementioned Georgia Sports Hall of Fame.
That is correct, 'five different" halls of fame, and it looks like the only one left is the grand daddy of them all... the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Considering his combined contributions to the game through broadcasting and as a player, there should no doubt be a place for Ernie Johnson in the broadcasting wing of the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Not bad for a tall, lanky pitcher from Brattleboro wouldn't you say?