New Soldiers’ Home Supt. Loves Working in Chelsea

There’s a lot going on at the Chelsea Soldiers’ Home, and new Supt. Eric Johnson is on the case day in and day out – whether it’s keeping track of the new construction project or caring for the veterans, he said he loves his job.

Johnson is originally from Pittsburgh, but came out to Massachusetts about 10 years ago. He assumed his new duties as Superintendent of the Chelsea Soldiers’ Home five months ago, and is now fully settled into the job, he said.

“I love what I do,” he said on Monday.

Johnson spent almost 25 years in the Army, about half of that in the artillery as part of the combat arms. He spent another stint as an investigator and recruiter in more of an administrative role. He said he’s served all over, including Oklahoma, Georgia, Kentucky, upstate New York, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and even in Germany for five years.

Previously, he also ran nursing homes for five years, giving him the unique experience as a veteran and a skilled nursing home administrator that fits at the Soldiers’ Home.

The former superintendent, Cheryl Lussier Poppe, was promoted to secretary of the Department of Veterans Services by Gov. Charlie Baker last October. She had served at the Soliders’ Home since 2014 – ushering in a new era of service at the Home and breaking ground on a multi-million dollar modern living facility on the property.

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