KATHY; This was my first home in Mt Pleasant. When my father finished law school in Chicago (1921 -23) and returned to Utah he ,with his wife and 3 children ,lived with his parents ,J W Christensen, in Fairview until he could open his law practice in Mt Pleasant which he did in 23 – 24 by buying out an attorney I think by the name of Cherry. He then rented this home and moved us to Mt Pleasant. We lived here until Fred Larsen bought the home. Your story says 1923 but Fred may have rented it to us until summer of “25 when we moved into the Borg home Ist West. I remember my first Christmas here when my grandfather gave me a silver dollar. It is not true that I still have it>? I learned to tie my shoe laces here, played with the Woolsey kids and Emil Lund. I still carry a sliver picked up on the backyard fence in my left wrist. And I still shudder when I think of all the things that could have happened to me when I crawled across the street thru the newly constructed bridge over the little irrigation ditch that crossed the street near the house. Too this day I blame the Woolsey kids. lee
Saturday, December 20, 2014
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Sunday, October 26, 2014
I'm just back from 15 days of "round up" time in Yakima. This year is was
mostly apple round up. Many, many of them and they were still picking when
I left. If you are not eating an apple a day you should and if you are you
might consider adding a second or third apple. A glass of hard apple cider
instead of orange juice for breakfast could brighten your day.
And for those of you who have not been out in the sagebrush in October
it is blooming then and goes with the round up . Bing gets it right. lee
Saturday, September 6, 2014
Kathy: Inspired by Rupert Brooke’s poem “The Soldier” and paraphrasing a line from it I’ve crafted this tribute.
They never came Home but there is a spot in a Foreign Land that is forever North Sanpete.
Entered the Service From: Utah
Rank: Staff Sergeant
Service: U.S. Army Air Forces, 527th Bomber Squadron, 379th Bomber Group, Heavy
Died: Monday, December 20, 1943
Buried at: Netherlands American Cemetery
Location: Margraten, Netherlands
Plot: M Row: 3 Grave: 6
Awards: Air Medal, Purple Heart
Clyde W. Rigby
Entered the Service From: Utah
Rank: Second Lieutenant
Service: U.S. Army Air Forces, 577th Bomber Squadron, 392nd Bomber Group, Heavy
Died: Tuesday, January 04, 1944
Memorialized at: Cambridge American Cemetery
Location: Cambridge, England
Awards: Air Medal, Purple Heart
Russell S. Jensen
Entered the Service From: Utah
Service: U.S. Army Air Forces, Headquarters Squadron, 5th Air Base Group
Died: Thursday, September 07, 1944
Memorialized at: Manila American Cemetery
Location: Fort Bonifacio, Manila, Philippines
Awards: Purple Heart
Entered the Service From: Utah
Rank: Technical Sergeant
Service: U.S. Army Air Forces, 526th Bomber Squadron, 379th Bomber Group, Heavy
Died: Sunday, June 18, 1944
Buried at: Ardennes American Cemetery
Location: Neupre (Neuville-en-Condroz), Belgium
Plot: D Row: 16 Grave: 4
Awards: Air Medal with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters, Purple Heart
Wallace W. Candland
Entered the Service From: Utah
Service: U.S. Army Air Forces, Army Air Corps
Died: Thursday, January 04, 1945
Memorialized at: East Coast Memorial
Location: New York, NY, USA
Dee A. Johnson
Entered the Service From: Utah
Rank: First Lieutenant
Service: U.S. Army Air Forces, 94th Fighter Squadron, 1st Fighter Group
Died: Sunday, July 11, 1943
Memorialized at: Sicily-Rome American Cemetery
Location: Nettuno, Italy
Awards: Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal with 6 Oak Leaf Clusters, Purple Heart
James K. Sorensen
Entered the Service From: Utah
Rank: Ship's Cook, Third Class
Service: U.S. Navy, United States Navy
Died: Friday, December 11, 1942
Memorialized at: Manila American Cemetery
Location: Fort Bonifacio, Manila, Philippines
Awards: Purple Heart
Harold Q. Graham
Entered the Service From: Utah
Rank: Private First Class
Service: U.S. Army, 275th Infantry Regiment, 70th Infantry Division
Died: Saturday, May 12, 1945
Buried at: Netherlands American Cemetery
Location: Margraten, Netherlands
Plot: K Row: 17 Grave: 3
Entered the Service From: Utah
Rank: Aviation Radioman, Second Class
Service: U.S. Navy, United States Naval Reserve
Died: Saturday, February 23, 1946
Memorialized at: Honolulu Memorial
Location: Honolulu, HI, USA
Awards: Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal with 4 Gold Stars
If I should die, think only this of me:
That there's some corner of a foreign field
That is for ever England. There shall be
In that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,
Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,
A body of England's, breathing English air,
Washed by the rivers, blessed by suns of home.
And think, this heart, all evil shed away,
A pulse in the eternal mind, no less
Gives somewhere back the thoughts by England given;
Her sights and sounds; dreams happy as her day;
And laughter, learnt of friends; and gentleness,
In hearts at peace, under an English heaven.
Saturday, August 16, 2014
A PICTURE STORY
The Time: 1713 (military time)
The Date: 1 August 1944
KATHY: I don’t know that this has a place on the Mt Pleasant History site but I thought you might like to see what an old guy does in his free time . lee
Trying my computer hand at a picture story. Needs tightening but I have problems manipulating a photo with a mouse. I’ve a call in to Bill Gates for help. lee
The Place: Hedgerows, near Percy, Normandy, France
The Event: “About then I heard an incoming shell. I hit the ground face down. I do not recall the explosion. I do remember the sharp stabbing in my lower left rib cage. I knew I had been hit. I was terrified! I had been hit and remember thinking ”I’ve been hit” but I’m still alive”.
Excerpted from “ The Physical and Psychic Wounding of Lt Lee R Christensen” Can be read by Googling the title.
The Field Hospital:
And a Note from the Medical Staff:
Most seriously wounded means men shot through the head, lungs, bowels, or large bone of the legs, wounds that in World War I were usually fatal.
Our basic technique is to open up a man's abdomen with an 8-inch incision, go through his intestines and other organs carefully looking for holes made by bullets or shell fragments. Damaged organs and bowel are removed, the holes sewed shut and the incision closed except for a loop of bowel that serves as a temporary outlet. Minor wounds are cleaned of damaged flesh and packed with vaseline gauze. We do chests as well as bellies, sometimes on the same man. We use great quantities of whole blood. We have sulfa, which we smear liberally everywhere we can, and everybody who lives gets the new drug penicillin every four hours..
And I lived to Celebrated this Day 70 Years After>?
The Music: Glenn Miller’s “American Patrol”
Wednesday, July 23, 2014
In the ten years 1924 thru 1933 the North Sanpete Rams beat the Wasatch Tigers just once – 1929. That year a team quarterbacked by Eugene (Ganny) Peterson and starring Neil Hafen, end and Vernon Christensen, fullback, out scored Wasatch for the first time in coach Brunger’s tenure. They were not to do it again for another five years.
The Wasatch team was quarterbacked by Johnny Becker though not from Mt Pleasant he did marry a Mt Pleasanter. The Wasatch line was anchored by two local boys, Dee Keusseff and Dick Candland and I would guess sitting on the bench, Glen Williams and Fremont Draper.
Both quarterbacks returned to their high schools as teachers, Ganny to coach and Johnny to teach social studies; where he made freshmen girls giggle with his risqué stories.
The football game between the Wasatch Tigers and the North Sanpete Rams, played in early November, was among the five top events of the year in the Mt Pleasant ‘30s, ranking just behind the Junior Prom and just ahead of the opening of deer hunting. The climatic event preceding the game was a torch light parade that started on the North Sanpete campus. There nearly 200 students would each pick up a flaming torch and in unison all march down Main street and on to the corner of 1st West and 2nd South where they would throw their torch onto a flaming bon fire mid street. . Wasatch students would be circled around their fire. For the next 30 – 40 minutes students from both schools sang, shouted, rang bells, tooted horns and banged drums hoping to make enough noise to carry thru to next day’s game. All the games were memorable but the game played 11 November 1938 unforgettable. There was not even a threat of snow during the torch light festivities but during the night 10 inches of snow fell. The game was to be played at North Sanpete so they called on the hiway graders to scrape the field. Coach Brunger sensing Wasatch players had to stay warm bought long johns for the team... .... .... .... (Cleaned out J C Penny’s)
. Wasatch scored first just before the half with a play that brought smiles to the rooters of both teams. Wasatch had driven from mid field to the 3 yard line. From there Dewey Fills, a running back, was given the ball to charge into and thru the line for the score. Five yards into the end zone he was met head on and tackled by his younger brother, Elmer, North Sanpete’s safety. The referee whistled loud and long and charged Elmer with a penalty only to be told by Dewey “don’t penalize him Ref, I’ll take care of the kid tonight at home’”. Final score: Wasatch Academy 19 - North Sanpete 0, Fillis Family tied.
Wednesday, July 2, 2014
- I was born May 8, 1913, in Mount Pleasant, Sanpete County, Utah, to Andrew Lysander and Lettie Phipps Peterson. The small stucco house in which I was born is located on State Street and Sixth South, on the south-west corner of the intersection. It was in an interesting neighborhood with Halstroms from Sweden (Martin, Hilma, Bertha, Alvin) across the road east, Millers north of Halstroms, Otto Rasmussens (Edna, Macy, Dorothy) across the street north of our house, Jorgensens west of our house (Pearle, Luella, Holger), and many Danish people living in the neighborhood. I remember when Holger fell out of a tall tree and knocked his wind out plus four teeth. My parents had attended Snow College in Ephraim, Utah, and then moved to Salt Lake City where father attended Henager's Business College and upon graduation was employed to teach "Rapid Calculations" and Accounting. My sister, Rhoda, was born in Salt Lake City, February 24, 1910. They moved to Mt. Pleasant soon thereafter and Father was the first employed in a hardware company but soon became a banker (cashier) at the North Sanpete Bank. I was the second child in the family and the first of four boys.
- In memory, I recall happy days as a young child playing with my sister and my brother, Roid, who was born May 2, 1915, and the neighborhood children. However, I remember the Miller boys had a tent in the corner of their lot and one summer day invited me into it where they introduced me to a cigarette. I didn't know what a cigarette was and they told me to suck on one end of it as they lighted the other end. I innocently did as they instructed and inhaled the cigarette and passed out. It frightened them as they thought they had killed me. They were thankful when I revived. They never tried that on anyone and they quit tampering with cigarettes after that experience. I also remember my little girlfriend, Dorothy, who lived across the street north of our house. (She was Edna's daughter.) I used to meet her and we would greet each other with a hug and kiss although we were less than 5 years old. I also remember going down the board walk from our house in my little wagon to our summer dining room which was a separate frame building encased with screen where we ate our meals in the summer time. It was a good cool place for mother to prepare meals and for the family to eat. I also remember the winters and going down the walk and our back lawn on the little sled. I remember the end of World War I and hearing the church and school bells ringing. Brother Halstrom was the custodian of the South Ward Chapel and was the one to make the bell ring out the glad tidings that the war was ended.
- Sadness came into our lives on the third of April, 1918, when my brother, Roid, took convulsions following a brief illness and died. This was such a shock that my mother had a nervous break-down. We sold our little house and moved to a larger house located at 268 South State Street, which we purchased from Bent Hansen. It was to become our family home over the years. It is located across the street from the South Ward Chapel where Father served as counselor to Bishop McIntosh for a few years and then as bishop of the Ward for nearly 17 years. My brothers, Elden and Wayne, were born the 22nd of February, 1919, and the 18th of November, 1921, respectively. I remember our joy at their arrival and the happy home we had. Father was a faithful bishop and was called out all hours of the night to administer to the sick. Our home was the scene of many marriages and also served as the church office for many years. On the main floor we had an entrance hallway, a parlor, living room, kitchen, bathroom, and pantry. Upstairs were four bedrooms. We did not have central heating, but thoroughly enjoyed the large heatrola in the living room. Mother was always figuring out ways to remodel and improve the house. Nearly every wall was removed sooner or later and a large front room was made in place of the hallway and the parlor. A nice area was built on the back of the house and later an oil furnace was installed. The outdoor shanty and fruit cellar were moved after several years and transformed into a garage southwest of the house
- On one occasion, my sister Rhoda was near death's door with pneumonia. Dr. Parley Leon Holman had done all he could for her and we had exercised great faith and prayer in her behalf. The crisis came on a Sunday and Elder George Albert Smith of the Council of the Twelve was presiding at a stake conference in Fairview. Father called and talked with him and asked if he would come and administer to Rhoda. He agreed and promised that her life would be bridged until he could come at the end of the conference sessions. When he came we all joined in prayer and administration. He promised her complete restoration of health according to the will of our Heavenly Father. After Elder Smith left our house, Father was in the room with Rhoda and saw her stiffen out and her fingernails turn dark and had a manifestation of Satan trying to take her life. Father rebuked Satan and the scene suddenly changed; Rhoda began breathing normally, her natural color returned, and she was soon well again.
- On another occasion, Elden was critically ill with pneumonia and was saved by the exercise of faith, prayer, administration and the will of our Heavenly Father. We saw many such examples of the power of the Priesthood in our home over the years and appreciated our membership in the Church. We held famiy home evenings at which we would all participate by providing musical numbers, saying poems, telling experiences, or other ways. Father would tell us of his experiences living among the Indians in Indianola when he was a boy, would tell us stories from the scriptures and would teach us the Gospel. We always enjoyed a treat he would bring home as a special surprise to have near the close of the home evening, or he would make delicious honey candy that he stretched until it was white.
- I had many good boy friends including Grant Larsen, Clarence Anderson, Gerald Ericksen, Allen Smith, Earl Murphy, Lloyd Jensen, Armond Rasmussen, to name but a few. I attended school in the Hamilton Elementary School located on Main Street and First East. I remember one sad morning when we came to school to find our principal and the custodian had both been electrocuted (Elmer Johansen and Brother Torkelsen). They had gone into a damp power room to turn the electric current on for the day. Apparently, there was a short in the switch and each in turn was electrocuted. I enjoyed my elementary school days very much and appreciated the good teachers. John F. Mower was principal after the death of Elmer Johansen. I remember one time we were marched out to the east side of the building and Principal Mower talked to us as a group and said someone had stolen some school money out of his office. He said he had a good idea who it was and unless the guilty party returned the money by the next day, the juvenile judge and the marshall would have the guilty person in jail. I was so shaken by his strong talk that I could hardly sleep that night and wondered if I had taken the money without knowing about it. The next day Ralph Remburg confessed to taking the money.
- My junior and senior high school days were spent at North Sanpete on First North and State Street. We helped build the Longdorf Football Field by grading and hauling away loads of gravel and dirt. We had lots of fun at school parties, dances, athletic games, etc. There was great rivalry between North Sanpete High School and Wasatch Academy (a Presbyterian school in Mt. Pleasant). We would hold snake dances, torch-light parades, street rallies, and all kinds of events preceding athletic contests with Wasatch. The games were always hard fought and filled with tension and enthusiasm. One Sunday morning as I was ready to go to Church, the water faucet was leaking. It had a porcelain handle and as I pushed hard to turn the water off, the handle split and pierced deeply into my left hand. I was taken to the doctor's office where Dr. P.L. Holman operated on my hand. He spliced the broken cartilages in my two fingers and repaired most of the damage. I regained the use of my fingers but the normal feeling never returned to two of them.
- I had a girl friend all through my high school years--Wanda Matson. We enjoyed social activities, going on trips to Fish Lake, Bryce Canyon and other places with my family; having good dinners at their home, double dating with Clarence Anderson and Marion Eatinger, Gerald Ericksen and Eva Beck, and other friends. I played with Mood Winks Dance Orchestra as drummer (and often used my xylophone and sometimes my trumpet). Other members were Gerald Ericksen, sousaphone; Ernest Terry, trombone; Marsden Allred, trumpet; Helen Madsen, piano; George Squire, Gordon Staker, saxophones; Irvin Stansfield, banjo. We played about twice a week for dances in Mt. Pleasant and throughout central Utah.
- C.L. Stewart was our high school principal, neighbor, and first counselor to my father in the bishopric. We had good teachers and an enjoyable high school experience. I took part in plays, debates, music, and business. I was studentbody president my senior year and was on the commercial team which did well in contests at BYU, Snow College, and other places. Clarence Anderson and I played in the band, which held class at 12 noon until 12:30 each school day. We had to walk home, have our lunch, and be back by 1:00 for class. I had 7 blocks to walk, but he had nearly double that. He nearly walked my legs off to keep up with him, but by the time I had eaten he would be back for me to go to school. He was not a member of the Church but a very remarkable person. He was a speed reader. In English literature classes if we shared a book he would be waiting to turn the page before I had finished the first paragraph. He could write orchestrations, conduct the orchestra or band, and play almost any trumpet music at sight. We had him come to MIA with us and elected him president of the M-Men class. We always enjoyed his intelligence and wit. He had read nearly every book in the Mt. Pleasant Library that was of any interest to him by the time he graduated from High School. (He later married Catherine Clark, an LDS girl from St. George, and finally joined the Church and became a bishop in California where he was a business executive with Rexall Drugs. When he retired he and Catherine moved to Provo and were ordinance workers in the Provo Temple.)
- Aunt Zale, my mother's oldest sister, died and her only child Delmar Tripp lived with us while he attended North Sanpete High School. He was studentbody president and a good athlete. His father was an engineer on the D&RG Western Railway. Uncle Burt loved to fish and we would often go as a family with him and his second wife, Beatrice, to Fish Lake, where we would camp and enjoy fish dinners. They lived in Soldier Summit and I would visit them and work in the railroad yards with Delmar.
- I attended Snow College in Ephraim, Utah, for two years after graduating from High School. I was elected president of my freshman class and also my sophomore class. I continued to play with Moon Winks dance orchestra. Wanda Matson and I grew less interested in each other and began dating others. I worked part-time in the bookstore and did some work for President Milton H. Knudsen. I enjoyed my Snow College years and appreciated especially the following teachers: H.R. Christensen, M.H. Knudsen, Lucy Phillips, Charles Wall, and J.C. Christensen. I commuted from Mt. Pleasant via bus and was a bus driver my second year. There were many interesting times on the bus and some trying times in Pigeon Hollow when the bus would break down going home. My summers during high school and college were spent working at the Pea Viner north of Mt. Pleasant (4 summers), at the Deseret Live Stock farms in Iosepa (Skull Valley), on the farms, etc. I surely was happy to have September come and to get back to school each year.
- In 1933, I was graduated from Snow College with an Associate degree in Business and in September I enrolled at Brigham Young University. I had a position at the library, one with Ralph Ericksen's dance orchestra, and was living at Oliver's boarding house about 41 East 4th North. Six weeks into the fall quarter I was called to serve a mission in Norway. President Milton H. Knudsen of Snow College was called to preside over the Norwegian Mission and had suggested my name to the First Presidency. The depression was on, the banks had closed, Father had lost his position as cashier of the North Sanpete Bank, which was being liquidated, but was employed as Assistant Post Master for $80 a month. He agreed to send me $30 a month if I desired to go on a mission. I withdrew from BYU and entered the Mission Home in Salt Lake City. My testimonial was held Friday, November 17. After a wonderful experience of being taught by President Heber J. Grant and general authorities in the Mission Home, we traveled by train to New York, by boat (S.S. Manhattan) to Hamburg, Germany, and by train from there to Oslo. We were 5 missionaries of 27 going to Europe: Elders Carl F. Johansen, Winslow Swensen, Granville Barlow, Wendell Christensen, and myself. Elder Johansen had been on one mission to Norway and was fluent with the language. He taught us a few words and some basic language rules enroute to Norway. I was pleased to hear him converse on the train between Sweden and Norway in the language. It took us 14 days and nights to travel from Salt Lake City to Norway. We were met at the "Ostbane" Railway Station by Mission President, Milton H. Knudsen, and District President, Joseph Gunderson, who took us to the Knudsen home for a warm home-cooked meal. We were then taken to a quaint hotel to stay a few days. It was just before Christmas. Our first Sunday in church was interesting, but four of us couldn't understand a word and wondered if we would ever be able to handle the language--especially after listening to Branch President Einar Strand speak. He spoke so fast we couldn't tell where one word ended and another began. We had a great time acquainting ourselves with the Christmas customs in Norway. I shall always remember the good Christmas Eve dinner at Tante (Aunt) Kristiansens at Osterhausgate 27. We began eating at 6:30 at night and didn't finish until 10:00. I was assigned to labor in Oslo as President Gunderson's companion. The four others were sent to their fields of labor right after Christmas. On the first day of tracting, President Gunderson met a retired Lutheran minister and they spent a couple of hours in lively discussion. All I could understand was "Joseph Smith." (Josef Smitt) I got the impression the minister didn't think much of Joseph Smith. Then I thought I could tag along with President Gunderson until I learned the language. He had me memorize a short introduction to use at the doors and my second day of tracting I had my own district and was "on my own". I would keep my little speech written and placed in the inside of my hat for ready reference if I forgot what I was to say during my door approach. It was a great learning experience and I soon found myself memorizing nonsense-syllable speeches and delivering them.
- After four months I was transferred to the West Coast to labor in Haugesund and at six months was called to be District President of the Bergen District. I conducted a district conference in Stavanger and had to speak 7 times in 3 days in Norwegian. The Lord blessed me. We had great spiritual experiences in Haugesund where Julius Larsen had rheumatic fever and was healed by the power of the Priesthood. After 5 months, I was then transferred to Bergen and sustained as Branch President of the Bergen Branch for six months, as they were having problems with local leadership. We tracted in the fjords in the summer months and made contact with many honest and good people. I was transferred to Oslo to be Mission Sercretary the last 9 months of my mission, where I learned to love and really appreciate President and Sister Knudsen and their family. (I kept a daily diary of my mission.) I arrived home from my mission July 12, 1936, after touring briefly in Sweden, Denmark, Holland, France, England, and New York with my companion, Elder Clarance Christensen. In New York City we stayed with Dr. and Mrs. Virgil Christensen. He was head doctor at Peck's Memorial Hospital and his wife was a nurse. We witnessed a delivery.
- In September of 1936, I again enrolled at Brigham Young University where I continued my education until graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in the Spring of 1938. (Major: Accounting and Business Administration; Minor: Music and Office Practice) I was elected president of the Snow-Sanpete Club during my junior year and president of the senior class and enjoyed serving on the student council. I met Lyle Evans, who was later to become my wife. During my senior year she invited me to a LaVadis Social Unit dinner-dance. I returned the favor and we became interested in each other and were soon going steady. I played in a dance orchestra my junior year and until the last part of my senior year. I gave up the orchestra in order to devote some time to Lyle. I did my student teaching at Lehi High School as a substitute teacher and received pay as well as credit. Upon graduation, I went with Evan Croft to the University of Southern California to begin graduate work in the summer of 1938. Dr. E.G. Blackstone was my major professor. I joined Pi Omega Pi, a graduate business educators national professional organization. Lyle visited me during the summer while on a trip with her uncle (and aunt) David Wangsgaard, Assistant Superintendent of Ogden City Schools. They had been to Canada, Lake Louise, and down the western coast of the United States. (While she was in Los Angeles, I proposed to her. This was my second summer in Los Angeles.) I taught high school in 1938-39 at North Sanpete High School and lived at home with my parents. Quite often Lyle came to Mt. Pleasant with Arthur Gaeth from BYU who taught an extension course in the Business Department. I had good commercial teams and classes in bookkeeping, shorthand, and typewriting. I played volleyball a couple of nights a week with the faculty as the "Hen Pecks" and the "Free-Thinkers" teams. Vern Gunderson, A.W. Anderson, C.L. Stewart, A.E. Darley, Daniel Rasmussen, Seymour Jensen and others were fun to play with. The losers would treat the winners to candy bars after each game.
- Lyle's mother had married Thomas Bailey of Nephi and I was greatly impressed with Sister Bailey, as well as with Brother Bailey. I had many good meals in Nephi and enjoyed visiting there while I was courting Lyle (especially during the summer) and she would also go to Nephi for weekends and vacations. I returned to U.S.C. in 1939 for summer school and Lyle and I were married the 28th of August, 1939, in the Manti Temple. We had a great reception in Nephi, including a dance at which my brother Wayne, Kenneth Young, Ernest Terry and the dance orchestra played. Lyle and I drove to Provo after the reception and spent the night at the Roberts Hotel. We returned the next day to Nephi and then left for a honeymoon for a week to Yellowstone National Park. We went to St. George early in September where I taught school for two years at Dixie College and was chairman of the Business Department. We lived in the Wadsworth Apartments (the basement the first year and upstairs the second yeaar). Our bishop was Andrew McArthur who had been called at the age of 23 and was, at the time he was called, the youngest bishop in the church. He and his father owned the bakery next door to us and kept us in fresh bread, doughnuts, sweet rolls, potato chips, etc. I put on 20 pounds the first two years of married life. Glen Snow was president of Dixie College and really gave us a warm welcome. I came through St. George in August before my first year of teaching at Dixie College. The weather was hot (100 degrees plus) and there was no air conditioning. I knocked on President Snow's door at home and he said, "Come in." I walked in the front room and he was lying on the floor. He said, "This is the coolest place in the house." So I lay down beside him for a good visit. We enjoyed St. George, Dixie College, the people and my students. Erlend was born to us the 24th of November, 1940, and brought great happiness into our lives. Our mothers made it in record time from Nephi and Mt. Pleasant, with Lyle's mother driving, when they received the news. Erlend was an 8-month baby and weighed only 5 pounds. Dr. Reichman was a kind and effective doctor and helped nurture Erlend until he was well on the way to being a strong healthy baby. The English nurse at the hospital would say to "Little Pete": "If you want to be a big fellow like your father, you must eat your dinner."
- In the summer of 1940 and again in 1941 we returned to U.S.C. and lived in several apartments in Los Angeles. We took Erlend with us on Saturdays for outings and good times in the parks and elsewhere. We moved to Ogden in September of 1940 where I taught business classes at Weber College and managed the Bookstore during the school year. I received my Master's degree from the University of Southern California in 1942 and we moved to Provo where I was employed at BYU as the Instructor in "Secretarial Training." We lived in the basement of Evan Croft's house during the first year and then in the Muhlstein apartments on 8th North and 7th East.
- I became Administrative Assistant to President F.S. Harris the last year he was president of BYU and he wanted to take me with him to Utah State University where he went as president. I chose to remain at BYU. I was appointed Assistant Professor of Secretarial Training in 1944 and Associate Registrar in 1946. In 1948, after reorganizing the registration procedure with control cards for classes, establishing a new permanent record card for students' grades which could be photographed rather than hand typed, and making many other changes in the registrar's office, I returned to teaching as Associate Professor of Accounting and Business Administration. In 1950, my title was changed to Associate Professor of Business Education and Office Management. I taught courses in Accounting, Business English, Business Communication, Report Writing, Shorthand, Typewriting, Calculators and Office Machines, and Teacher Education.
- On December 27, 1943, our first daughter, Karen Deanne was born in the Utah Valley Hospital but lived for only 5 days. She is buried in the Provo Cemetery. Janet Lynne was born April 26, 1945; Susan Kay April 19, 1947; and Dolores Ann, July 29, 1949--all in the Utah Valley Hospital. We bought a building lot on 740 North 6th East and built a small garage home where we lived for several years.
- In 1959, I was asked to go to Iran in the Point Four Program (Technical Assistance Program) under the Department of State and as Economic Administrator. President F.S. Harris was the U.S. Country Director in Iran and had requested that I come to assist him. BYU, The University of Utah, and Utah State at Logan entered into contracts for the Iran Program. I was the administrative officer for the three institutions as well as serving on the headquarters staff of the country director. The first group to go from BYU consisted of Dr. Reed H. Bradford, Glen S. Gagon, Troy Walker, and Max J. Berryessa. We drove our automobiles to Washington, D.C. for orientation.
- As we were preparing to go to Iran, our eldest daughter, Janet, was stricken with polio. She was taken first to the Utah Valley Hospital for treatment, but by evening Dr. Don C. Merrill called us and said he was transferring her to the LDS Hospital in Salt Lake City where she could be placed in an iron lung. She had both the "bulbar" and the "spinal" types of polio and paralysis was setting in. We followed the ambulance to Salt Lake City and Janet was placed in an iron lung. She beat death by 20 minutes as her lungs collapsed 20 minutes after she was placed in the iron lung and it took over her breathing for her. She was given a tracheotomy and a tube was placed in her throat. We exercised all the faith and prayers we could and had her name placed on the prayer roll in the Salt Lake Temple. For two weeks we spent the days in Salt Lake City and went through anxious nights in Provo. It was "touch and go" with Janet. The Lord answered our prayers and she passed the crisis and after a couple of weeks was out of the iron lung. Paralysis of her lungs, throat, and left side began leaving and she began regaining her health and strength. President David O. McKay visited and blessed her in the hospital. Her doctor assured us she would make a complete recovery and that we should go ahead with our Iran plans. We had shipped our household effects. We went to the Church Offices and talked with Elder Ezra Taft Benson and sought his counsel. He assured us that if we lived the gospel and were prayerful the Lord would bless us and Janet and our family in Iran as much as if we were in the central stakes of Zion.
- The day after Janet came home from the hospital I left for Washington D.C. Aunt Lucile Madsen and Erma Shepherd accompanied me and I stayed a week with Ted and Lenore and their family in Falls Church, Virginia. I flew across the ocean and to Iran alone. It was almost frightening but challenging. The Middle East looked different than anything I had seen before. I noted the difference in Beirut, Lebanon. In Tehran I was met at the airport and taken to the home of President and Sister Harris. There I met George Stewart, Harry Versluis and their wives. We had a delightful Sunday together and then I moved to the Darband Hotel and made arrangements for the Utah contingent to arrive and stay there. They came by ship to Beirut and were therefore a few days behind me. My wife and family, including Janet, flew from Provo to Paris, Beirut and Tehran. It was a happy day for me when I met them at the airport after being separated from them for a couple of months.
- There were several families from Utah living at the Darband Hotel, ten miles from Tehran at the foot of the Elburz mountains, until mid-December. We enjoyed Thanksgiving Day as we had a large banquet table in U shape and had a Turkey dinner with all the trimmings for all the Utah group. In addition to those from BYU, there were the Stobbes, Browns and Millers from the U of U, and Milligans, Andersons, Ballards, Roskelleys, Versluises, Stewarts, Harrises, and Coulams from USAC. In December, several Utah families who were assigned to Tehran were able to obtain housing near the Darband Hotel in Tajrish. We had a large house surrounded by a spacious fenced-in lot and a good swimming pool. We had a gardener and his wife who lived in a small building in the corner of the lot. We were surrounded by Berryessas (who lived through the wall from us), Milligans, Coulams, Roskelleys, and Versluises. Others were not far from us, and we associated together almost daily.
- President McKay had set apart President Franklin S. Harris as the President of the Tehran Branch with authority to organize the Church in Iran. We soon had it organized with President Harris, George Stewart, and Joseph Coulam as the Branch Presidency and with me as the Branch Clerk. Whenever there were three or more couples or families from Utah assigned to another location we organized them into dependent branches. Therefore, we had branches also in Isfahan, Shiraz, Tabriz, Babolsar, Ahwaz, and Meshed. Thorpe B. Isaacson, of the Presiding Bishopric, visited us as he was also President of the Board of Trustees at Utah State. We had some great meetings while he was present. We organized in Tehran the various church organizations including Sunday School, Relief Society, Primary, and MIA. We held priesthood meetings, Sacrament meetings, and the various auxiliary meetings regularly. Everyone had more than one position in the Church and I worked up through the ranks of the Branch Presidency until I became the Branch President. President Harris had told us we were not premitted to proselyte but to teach the gospel by example. Soon many of our Iranian associates asked us why we did not drink and smoke like the other Americans. We explained it was a part of our religion as it is the Mohammadan religion. We said when someone is a member of our Church but smokes and drinks or does not live the religion, we call him a "Jack Mormon". That started the expression "Jack Moslem" for the Mohammadan friends to call each other if they smoked or drank. We won friends for the Church and saw the beginning of Iranians joining the Church.
- In December, we received notice that our cars had arrived in Beirut, Lebanon. Reed Bradford, Max Berryessa, Glen Gagon, Troy Walker, and Freddy Saleh, who was to be the guide and to drive my car to Tehran, flew to Beirut. They ran into snow storms and much delay and exposure driving from Beirut to Tehran. When they arrived in Tehran just before Christmas we were very grateful and were happy to have our automobiles. Our car had received rough treatment on the boat and had all four fenders smashed, the lock broken on the trunk and several things looted, and a large section broken out of the rear bumper (due to jacking the car up during the drive from Beirut when it was stuck in the snow). I was sad to see the condition of the car as it was a nearly new two-tone gray Chevrolet and now looked terrible. I took it to a General Motors garage to have it repaired. The foreman was an Australian. The garage had excellent equipment and skilled workmen. The day I went to get the automobile I received a refund check from the Lloyds of London Insurance Company stating they could not insure my car in Iran. Interestingly enough the refund check was almost the exact amount the garage charged me for repairing the automobile. I was delighted when I saw my car. It looked brand new as if it had just come from the factory. There was no sign of body damage and the car had been waxed after repair and painting, the rear bumper had been welded and re-chromed, and the car was in top shape. The amount charged for repairs was unbelievably low. (After I drove for three years, with 10 cents a gallon gasoline, I sold the car to a village owner for $50 more than I paid for it originally.)
- Because of the exposure on the trip from Beirut, Max Berryessa became ill with "pericorditis" and his heart was greatly enlarged. We took him to a British Doctor who hospitalized him and cared for him. The Embassy nurse provided antibiotics and medication. We exercised faith and the Priesthood in his behalf. The doctor said he may not live, but we would need to send him to Germany or USA for medical treatment if he should recover sufficiently to make the trip. Within a short time, Max was completely well, much to the surprise of the doctor.
- After we were in Iran about six months President Harris completed his tour of duty and was replaced by William E. Warne as U.S. Country Director to Iran. Mr. Warne had been with the Department of Interior for sixteen years and had risen through the ranks to become Assistant Secretary. We liked him very much and he in turn liked the Utahns and the Church. Mr. Warne wrote a book entitled Mission For Peace; Point 4 in Iran (Indianapolis, The Bobbs Merrill Co., Inc., 1956, 320 pp.) in which he gives an account of his stewardship as director of the program during the years 1951-55. The project in Iran was a mission for peace to help Iran remain among the free nations of the world oriented to the west and an effort to help the people of Iran help themselves improve their standard of living by applying sound principles of agriculture, education, economics, and work. As Mr. Warne said, "The principles that helped the Mormons make the deserts of Utah blossom as a rose could do the same thing in Iran."
- William E. Warne was asked by Empress Saroya, "Why Point Four?" This was his reply: "The United States of America feels that it has been blessed by God and that its people have inherited their culture, energy, ingenuity, and their ability to live peacefully side by side from those who emigrated to America from all parts of the earth. America, therefore, in token of her gratitude, is giving some of herself to help others to help themselves believing that when other people can witness that they, too, are going ahead to a better future, greater hopes will come to the common man, and peace will be buttressed within every village throughout the world. America is striving, therefore, to help the people of Iran to help themselves through improved agriculture, more education, and better health. These objectives are in line with the aspirations of men everywhere that their children may live, grow up in health to labor usefully and have a chance better than that of their father to find happiness."
- We ended a famine in the Caspian area by providing improved wheat known as "shapasand" variety, we improved agricultural conditions by the proper use of fertilizer, row-crop irrigation, and other basic principles. We improved the poultry situation by providing "White Leghorns," "Rhode Island Reds," etc. People would ride the bus 300 miles to exchange ten of their chickens for ten of ours. The results were phenominal and poultry industries sprang up in Iran. We improved cattle and sheep by providing good new breeding stock and introducing artificial insemmination for the animals. Education was tremendously improved among the tribal people and the village and city people due to the effective work of Point 4, with the greatest credit due the BYU educators. There were more than 85 projects included in the program while I was in Iran.
- I held a number of interesting positions. I was the administrative officer for all Utah contract personnel from BYU, U of U, and USAC. I also served on the Headquarters Staff in Teheran all the time I was there. The first day I was in Teheran President Harris introduced me to Ardeshir Zahedi and indicated that we would be working together. His father was the Chief of Police in Teheran and became Prime Minister while we were there. Ardeshir and I were the first personnel officers in the program and employed the first 150 Iranians to work with Point 4. (Ardeshir later married the Shah's daughter and became Ambassador to USA twice, Ambassador to England, and Minister of Foreign Affairs in Iran.) I later served as Acting Administrative Officer, serving with Jimmy Goulden; then Property Officer in charge of property accountability, warehousing, and property movement; then Administrative Officer with the Division of Education.
- I recall that while I was serving as Acting Administrative Officer and as Property Officer I had a young negro, Ernie Diggs, and an Iranian by the name of Moghis working with me. They were both very good as were my secretaries--especially Martha Haratounian who could speak six languages and write shorthand in all of them. Her English was excellent as she had lived a while in America and was a telephone operator while in USA. She said English was her third best language and she liked Italian best of all. While I was Property Officer I was sent to Isfahan and Shiraz to set up an interpreter. We went as a family (Lyle, Erlend, Janet, Susan, Dolores, and I) and started at 5:00 a.m. from Teheran. The road to Isfahan was so rough that even though the automobile was new, we broke the tie-rod three times. As we sat in the desert while the chauffeur would go to the nearest village and have the tie-rod welded, camel and donkey caravans came along. We bought pomegranites and enjoyed the day. Susan was just 4 years old and had a missionary spirit. Our interpreter was a young man who smoked cigarettes. On one of the desert stops, Susan went over to him and sat on his lap. She looked up into his face, patted his cheek, and said, "Don't you know Heavenly Father doesn't want you to smoke?" He never smoked in her presence after that. We arrived in Isfahan at 11:00 p.m., having gone 300 miles.
- The first spring we were in Iran, our gardener left the gate to the swimming pool open and Janet tumbled into the pool. She couldn't swim and the children screamed. Namad, Berryessa's gardener, heard the screams and jumped up on the wall between our places and could see Janet in the pool and her hair floating on the water. He jumped into the pool with his clothes on and rescued her. She developed bronchial pneumonia, and as we had no medical help available, I gave her shots of penicillin myself and she recovered. When I went across the village of Tajrish to get some penicillin from an American Doctor Jorgensen one day, I found myself in a dangerous situation. (The Iranians had nationalized their oil industry and expelled all British from the country. Sparked and encouraged by the Communist Party (Tudeh Party) there was great disturbance in the country and much agitation to expel all foreigners--including Americans. Signs appeared on walls all over the country saying, "Go Home Yankees", and on several occasions we had to close our offices and stay home for as many as three days at a time. It was a difficult time for us and we had to avoid crowds. We were spit on, had rocks thrown at us, had automobile windows broken, and had to take many precautions.) As I was returning from Dr. Jorgensen's house, I started toward our place and saw a large group of Iranian men marching down the street toward me in mob fashion. I tried to back my car or turn around but cars behind me prevented that action. I wondered what I should do as I was sure if the mob found an American alone in his car they would likely kill him. My automobile had Iranian license plates on it and I grabbed a blanket off the back seat and covered it over me like a "chadar" worn by the women, so none of the mob could see me as they went by on both sides of the car. Janet soon recovered from bronchial pneumonia and was just fine during all the rest of our stay in Iran. (She was our little miracle girl, as she had been hit by a car and was in a cast from her right foot to her hip when she was just four years old.)
- After I had been in Iran 1 1/2 years, Mr. Warne called me into his office one Saturday in February, 1953, and said, "They'd like you to be at a meeting in Logan Thursday. Do you think you could make it?" I assured him I would try and immediately set about getting my exit visa, airplane ticket, re-entry permit, etc. I flew to Stockholm and stayed over night. However, on the airplane coming over the Swiss alps we went through a severe electrical storm. Lightning hit the wings of our plane and rolled in balls of fire off the end of them. The plane tossed and creaked and I thought the end was drawing near. We finally landed in Geneva, Switzerland, in a snow storm and pulled into a huge hangar. As I recall, the plane was a DC-8 with four propellers. I flew from Geneva to New York and then on to Salt Lake City. I was in Logan for the meeting on Thursday and spent a couple of weeks in Utah recruiting additional contract personnel. I walked in my brother Wayne's dental office as he was drilling someone's teeth. He thought I was in Iran and when he saw me he was so surprised it could have caused a dental accident. I went to Mt. Pleasant and my parents were in church. Mother was the first to come home and as she put her hand on the door knob I opened the door and greeted her. She thought I was an angel and nearly fainted. After the recruitment of ten educators for the BYU contract, I flew to Washington, D.C., for a couple of weeks and worked out a new contract for BYU/Washington/Iran and then returned to Teheran. It was great to have had the trip and then to be back with my wife and children. The Utahns had a big party for me at Stobbe's house and had made home-made ice cream. They used canned cream in it, as we couldn't use any local dairy products because they weren't safe. They wondered why I didn't really enjoy it, but I had been enjoying real ice cream in USA. Living in Iran involved certain health hazards. We couldn't use any fresh vegetables or fruits such as strawberries without soaking them in "perchlorin" for twenty minutes, which didn't help the taste, and we had to boil our drinking water or get chlorinated water from the US Embassy well, and had to cook our meat until it was very well done, etc. The new educators arrived in Iran a few months after I had been in USA. They were John and Rissa Clarke, Reed and Damaris Morrill, Vern Cupfer, Rober Van Drimmelen, Richard Brown, Boyd McAffee, Kenneth Young, John Bean, John Payne and James Nutall. Others arrived on the U of U and the USAC contracts. We had many fine church and social occasions at our home in Tajrish with the Utahns.
- We chartered an Iranian bus for a trip to the Caspian Sea for the 24th of July one year. (The buses looked attractive on the outside and even had Cadillac fins, but they rode like hay racks without springs.) We went through a long tunnel leaving the desert on one side and finding a lush jungle-like vegetation on the Caspian side. Many of the houses were thatched because of the abundant rainfall. The weather was good while we were there and we enjoyed staying at the Shah's Caspian Hotel and swimming in the Caspian Sea. The Shah and his wife were there and we saw them playing on the beach and having a good time.
- The political situation reached a climax in mid August, 1953. The Communist party tried to take over the country in a Coup d'etat which failed. There was a short but bloody revolution and some of our Point 4 automobiles and equipment were destroyed in the area we rented from Prime Minister Mossadeq. He was arrested and later tried and imprisoned. The Shah and his wife left in his own private plane for Baghdad and Rome. Crowds had been shouting "We want a republic....death to the Shah." Many thought the Shah would abdicate and a republic be announced. It was estimated that 85 percent of the crowds were the Tudeh party who began pulling down statues of the Shah and his father Reza Shah from public squares. Tanks and soldiers appeared in the streets. The bloodiest spot in town was in front of Mossadeq's home. People circulated the corpses in the streets. Mossadeq's house fell after five hours of fighting and the Point 4 Tehran Regional Office rented from Mossadeq suffered complete ravage. The efforts to take over the country failed and the Shah soon returned to Tehran in his private plane amid great jubilation. Ambassador Loy W. Henderson and William E. Warne met with General Zahedi and promised 45 million dollars aid. With the Monarchy saved, chieftains from all over Persia came to Teheran to pay homage to the young Shah.
- Because of all the political difficulties, the new contract personnel were obliged to leave their families home for the first few months. We were advised to get our families out of Iran for safekeeping until it was certain that all would be well there. I took my family to the Holy Land for a couple of weeks, and then they went to Switzerland and Frankfurt, Germany, to live for six months. We flew to Damascas and visited there for a day and then rented a car and chauffeur and drove to Balbek where we saw the ruins of a once important and beautiful place near the Cedars of Lebanon. We then went to Beirut where we stayed at the beautiful Bia Ritz Hotel on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea. The food and service at the hotel were excellent and time spent on the sandy beach and in the water was very pleasant. After four days we flew from Beirut to Jerusalem and stayed for four days at the YWCA Hotel. We hired a guide and a limousine to see the Holy Land. We drove to Damascus, the Dead Sea, Jericho and other places of interest. We were impressed with the Mount of Olives and the Garden of Gethsemane. It was a thrill to be where Jesus lived and to feel that we were walking where he once walked. Our trip to the Holy Land was very enjoyable. We flew back in an eight-passenger plane which flew low and went around clouds and took us over the Sea of Galilee enroute to Beirut. Soon I saw my wife and four children off for Europe and I returned to Teheran where I lived with Reed and Damaris Morrill, Glen Morrill, Max Berryessa, and Glen Wahlquist for six lonely months. In January, however, Max, Bruce Anderson, Joseph Coulam and I had the opportunity of flying to Naples, Italy, with the Naval Attache who was taking his Navy plane for service. We landed in Baghdad, Beirut, Athens, and Naples. The four of us Utahns traveled by train from Naples to Switzerland and Germany to visit our families. Max's family was staying with his brother-in-law, David Wright and Helen (Janet's sister), just out of Frankfurt and my wife and children were living in Bad Soden, which was nearby. They were living in a "pension" or house where Felix Mendelsohn once lived and were just around the corner from the house in which Richard Wagner was born. We enjoyed a week's visit and attended the Serviceman's Branch with them before returning to Naples and flying back to Iran. After six months of separation, it was glorious to have our families return to us in Teheran and to have the wives and families of the other Utah educators arrive.
- Many were the happy experiences we had in Iran and at the end of our three years, Director Warne gave a farewell reception for Lyle and me at his home. We had made many wonderful friendships and had a great feeling of accomplishment through the Point 4 program with its many successful projects. I appreciated a letter which Mr. Warne sent to me with a copy to President Wilkinson and others. It was as follows: UNITED STATES OF AMERICA OPERATIONS MISSION TO IRAN, POINT FOUR, August 23, 1954, William E. Warne, Director, Sepah Avenue, Teheran, Iran. Dear Dean: In almost three years here, you have performed such a variety of services for the USOM/Iran that I would have difficulty enumerating them. Among all the problems that I have had, the most troublesome has been where to find a man in an emergency to take on a difficult assignment. Again and again I turned to you, each time was greeted by you with unflagging patience, and never, regardless of the unprecedented character of the assignment or the complexity of the work, did I have occasion to regret it. The problem would have been eliminated entirely if I had had about three Dean Petersons here! You have made a large contribution. We are glad to have had you here. We are grateful to your school for sparing you so long. Good luck to you and your fine family. Sincerely yours, William E. Warne, Director of U.S., Operations Mission to Iran; Mr. Dean Peterson, USOM/Iran, Tehran. Copy to President Wilkinson; Personnel, FOA/W/ Personnel, USOM/Iran.
- The family and I left Iran in August, 1954, and flew to Copenhagen, Denmark, and Oslo, Norway. When we were in Copenhagen we discovered that Dolores had some kind of eye trouble and couldn't open her eyes until we bathed them with water. When we arrived in Oslo I took her to an eye doctor who said she had the beginning of trachoma, which she apparently had contracted from the Iranian children as it is very infectious. We went to Church at Osterhausgate 27 and after the opening exercises were over, I was called on to bear my testimony in Norwegian. After I sat down, Brother Einar Strand, who was the Oslo Branch President when I was on my mission, arose and reminisced about the time I was a missionary in Norway and bore his testimony. Many others did likewise and we had a very good reunion. We enjoyed our stay in Oslo and the children enjoyed all the sightseeing and the good food--especially the shrimp. We continued on to New York where our mothers met us at the airport. We picked up a new Pontiac automobile, which I had ordered while in Iran, and drove to Palmyra, Nauvoo and other Church historical places. Lyle's mother left us in Omaha and flew back to Provo where she was needed in her work at BYU. The trip home was interesting and pleasant. Although we were grateful we had gone to Iran, it was a thrill to be back home again--safe and sound. (In 1960, several of us at BYU wrote an account of our experiences in Iran under the title, Technical Aid--An Investment in People, "The Point Four Program in Iran." Contributors were John E. Bean, Max J. Berryessa, Reed H. Bradford, J. Richard Brown, A. John Clarke, Boyd H. McAffee, A. Reed Morrill, John W. Payne, Kenneth H. Young, and Dean A. Peterson. Copies were placed in the BYU Library.) Dr. L. Weston Oaks soon cured the trachoma in Dolores's eyes.
- 1954 - 1963
- We returned to our little house on 740 North 600 East in Provo, which we had rented while in Iran, and I returned to my teaching at the University in the College of Business--located in the temporary "North Building" which was a Camp Kearns Army building procured by President Howard S. McDonald along with many others after World War II. During my first year home from Iran, I was invited to give more than one hundred illustrated talks on Iran and the Point 4 program from one end of the State to the other.
- President Wilkinson asked me to be Director of Public Relations for the BYU along with my teaching. I had an office in the North Building for my teaching and another in a temporary building a block east and a little north of the Joseph Smith Building for my Public Relations work. Next to me, and under my direction, was W. Cleon Skousen who was in charge of Public Services and was directly over Janie Thompson and the Program Bureau. The three of us went on tours with the Program Bureau. I remember a wonderful tour to Reno, San Francisco and down the Coast to Los Angeles, then to Las Vegas and Provo. The Program Bureau gave programs at LDS Stake Centers and at High Schools all along the way. I recall how Cleon could tell interesting accounts of the Donner Party and other things as we rode along in the bus. When we were going over the Golden Gate Bridge at San Francisco and could see San Quentin Penetentiary "The Rock" some of the students asked Cleon to tell about the inmates, since he had been in the FBI for many years and was assistant to J. Edgar Hoover (the director) for seventeen years. He was acquainted with the personal history of several of the "lifers". I recall that he told about one inmate who could recite the Sermon on the Mount verbatim but had given lip service and had not absorbed the sacred message of the Savior. Consequently he had committed sins which in turn had resulted in his being committed to the penetentiary for life. He was like the people at the time of Joseph Smith about whom the Lord said,"They draw near to me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me." The last day of our trip was on a Sunday. We held a testimony meeting on the bus which lasted for several hours--from Las Vegas nearly to Provo. It was a spiritual meeting and everyone bore his or her testimony. At the conclusion, the bus driver, who was not LDS, took the microphone and bore his testimony about what he had heard and the spirit he had felt and what wonderful young people were on the bus. He was greatly impressed with their behavior on the entire trip and with their testimonies.
- Lyle and I had the opportunity to accompany the A Capella Choir and John and Flora Halliday on a concert tour to Canada. They gave concerts in Calgary where we visited the temple and they also sang on the steps of the temple, and Lyle and I stayed over night with the stake president and his wife, President and Sister Ursenback; in Edmonton, where we met N. Eldon Tanner for the first time; and in Great Falls, Montana. Canada was especially beautiful and we enjoyed staying one night at Waterton Lakes and riding up a ski lift to the top of the mountains from which the view was breathtaking.
- During this time I was very active in Business Education and had the privilege of serving for one year as president of the Utah Business Education Association and conducting the annual meetings in Salt Lake City. I later became the President of the Western Business Education Association (1963-64) which included business teachers in the eleven western states.
- In 1955, we purchased a new house in Orem at 526 East 400 North, which had been built by Lloyd Louder, who was the City Building Inspector and who served as our bishop in the Orem Second Ward. One Saturday when we returned after spending most of the day in Provo, we discovered that an orchard across the street north of us had been cleared and the trees hauled away. Lloyd had purchased the land and soon built a house for himself and family which contained the same floor plan as our house but was somewhat different on the outside. We enjoyed them and the other neighbors in that area--Sandstroms (who rented our basement for a couple of years before building their own house behind our lot), Dick and Judy Wells and family who lived to our west, the Salmons who owned a drug store and lived to our east, the Evan and Peggy James family, the Kenneth and Miriam Young family, and others. Our daughter Colleen Diane was born in the LDS Hospital in Salt Lake City, February 23, 1956.
- In June of 1956 we went to Los Angeles for me to pursue my graduate studies at the University of Southern California. We lived in an apartment (lower part of a house) at 3012 Shrine Place which we sub-leased from Douglas and Lugene Neuenswander during the summer. He was a dental student who had gone to Utah with his family for the summer. We were fortunate to be able to rent the upstairs (3010 Shrine Place) when the Neuenswanders returned to occupy the lower floor. They were our close associates during the time we lived in California. I registered as a full-time student; was graduate assistant to my major professor, Dr. James Finn of the School of Education; and taught one class in the College of Business during our stay in California from June 1956 to the end of August 1957. I studied for the comprehensive examinations with John Green, Geneva Winterrose, and a Mr. Fitch, a former school superintendent from Iowa who had failed the comprehensives the first time he took them at USC. Paul H. Dunn was the director of the LDS Institute at the University and was also in our doctoral program. He had passed the comprehensives and permitted us to study at the Institute. We were to take the examinations the first part of January, 1957, and used the two-week Christmas vacation to meet daily at the Institute and have drill sessions with each other. Our concentrated studies paid dividends as all four of us passed the examinations which were 1 1/2 days in length and tested us in five fields of study. Those who take the examination compete with each other as the scores are placed in percentiles and half of those who take the examination are failed. There were approximately 37 of us who took it at that time.
- We were members of the Adams Ward, which was the mother ward of the Church in Los Angeles. Our bishop was Melvin Randall and our Stake President was John Russon. I taught the Gospel Doctrine class in Sunday School and also the Teacher Training program most of the time we were in Los Angeles. As a family, we went to the beaches or somewhere each Saturday to have an outing and some fun together. We spent one happy day with the Berryessa family at Disneyland and also went to Palo Alto and visited with them during our stay in California, as Max was studying for his doctorate at Stanford.
- One Friday while I was studying at USC I received a telephone call from Weldon Taylor, Dean of the College of Business at BYU, asking me if I could fly home and meet with President Wilkinson, Dean Taylor, and the Campus Planning Committee to consider a new College of Business building. I replied in the affirmative and was in Provo for a meeting Saturday morning in President Wilkinson's office. During the previous school year I had served as chairman of a planning committee for a new business building, although we were number 32 in priority of new campus buildings. I had worked with a committee to prepare specifications and three sets of floor plans and had taken time for discussions in several faculty meetings. The place where the "North Building" was located was needed for the ******** of a new library. They were going to relocate the North Building farther north, but discovered it would cost $75,000 to do so and to connect plumbing, electricity, etc. Dean Taylor told President Wilkinson and the Planning Committee that we had our specifications ready for a new business building. We then presented our plans and were moved up to first place on the schedule for new buildings. An architect was employed and he and Dean Taylor, Lars Crandal, and others came to California where I took them to see the new buisness buildings at UCLA, San Diego State, etc. When I returned to the BYU Campus, I was put on the Campus Planning Committee and watched our plans turn to brick and mortar in the Jesse Knight Building. (Roe Smith was the Architect and the Okland Construction Company from Salt Lake City was the contractor.)
- When I returned to the campus in 1957, I taught full-time for the first year. I returned to USC for a four-week summer session to complete the last of my course work for my doctorate. I took my final oral examination on my dissertation, "A Study of Readability and Other Factors of Business Communications in Utah", in January, 1958, and was awarded my Doctorate of Education degree in 1959.
- In 1958, I was appointed Director (or Dean) of the Summer School and served in that position, together with teaching part-time, for twelve years. I had many wonderful contacts with visiting faculty whom we employed each summer and with the University Administration, deans and department chairmen, faculty, staff, and students. I worked closely with studentbody officers and had charge of assemblies twice a week during the summers.
- While living in Orem I served on the SCERA (Sharon Community Education and Recreational Association) for two or three years and was president of the Board in 1959-60. We held our board meetings at the SCERA theater and Lyle would attend the picture shows while I was in board meeting. We had a free pass to the theater and made good use of it. I assisted in raising funds and making plans for the SCERA park and swimming pool. I enjoyed my association with Dover Hunt, who was the SCERA manager and also our stake president; with LaGrand Jarvis; Woody Jensen; Rex Blake; Leeman Bennett; Parlell Peterson and many others who were associated with SCERA. I also served on the Orem Stake High Council from 1957 to 1959 with President M. Dover Hunt and Counselors Ray Louder and Eli Clayson. (I had served on the High Council of the East Provo Stake in 1950-51 with Ariel S. Ballif, Stake President.)
- As I was serving as Bishop of the BYU 14th Ward (1959-60) and making many trips between our home and BYU, which was a distance of six miles each way, we decided to build a house on a lot we owned in Provo. It was in the Evening Glow subivision between the campus and the block Y on the mountain, 1170 Holly Circle. I drew the floor plan to scale and worked out the specifications for the house, using the features we liked about our Orem home and adding a family room and other features we desired. I employed Lloyd Louder to build the house--to be the one to oversee the construction, sub-contract, pay bills, do carpentry work, etc. He charged carpenters wages for the time he spent, and Erlend and I did much of the work of construction. It took about six months to build the house and we moved in on Halloween day in October, 1960. We sold our garage home at 740 North Sixth East in Provo and about 1 1/2 years later we sold our house in Orem.
- Sonja Yvonne was born December 2, 1960, at the Utah Valley Hospital in Provo. Earlier in the year I was called to serve as First Counselor in the BYU Third Stake Presidency in 1960 with William Noble Waite as president, Fred Schwendiman as second counselor, and Ted Stoddard as stake clerk. Erlend was called on a mission to the Eastern States in 1961, President Waite was called to Scotland as Mission President in 1962, and I was immediately sustained as president of the BYU Third Stake. I chose as my counselors, Fred Schwendiman and Harold Goodman, with DerMont Bell as stake clerk. Our stake headquarters was in the Smith Family Living Center. We had an excellent High Council with Earl Lewis as senior member. He had served as mission president in Canada and was a Provo City Commissioner. The wards had non-students as bishops but students as counselors and other ward positions.
- In 1963, I went to New York City with expenses paid for an interview with the President and Board of the American University of Beirut in Lebanon. They were interested in my going to the University as Assistant to the President for business affairs. The salary and benefits were very good but they were looking for someone who would be permanent. Since I would only consider the position for a two- or three-year period, I did not accept it. I spent Sunday in Westchester, N.Y., with Erlend and met many of the people he had told us about in his letters including Brother and Sister Virgil James, Brother and Sister L. Tom Perry. We accepted Sister Perry's invitation to have dinner at their home. It was a delicious dinner and the Perry's were perfect hosts. Everyone spoke highly of Erlend and praised his missionary services. I spent Sunday night with Erlend and his companion. They took Brother Perry and me to the airport the next morning and I flew to Salt Lake City.
- In May I learned why the Beirut position didn't work out, as I was called to go to Norway to preside over the Norwegian Mission for three years. We were called to the Church Office Building and interviewed by Joseph Fielding Smith, Harold B. Lee, and Boyd K. Packer. After the greetings, Elder Smith asked us if we were called to preside over a mission would we accept the call. We answered in the affirmative and were then told that our call was to Norway. We were thrilled with the call and the location. Lyle was pleased with Elder Smith's kindness and good humor. As I was Director of Summer School at BYU, it was decided that I should wait until the end of Summer School to leave for Norway. On August 12, we went as a family to give the program in sacrament meeting at the Norwegian branch in Salt Lake City. President and Sister Richard Petersen and President and Sister Sherman Gowans, who were former mission presidents were also in attendance. Erling Magnusen served as interpretor for the family but I spoke in Norwegian. It was an interesting prelude to our next three years in Norway. Our girls sang the Norwegian National Anthem in Norwegian and really surprised and pleased everyone at the meeting. Lyle was presented with a beautiful bouquet by a Norwegian girl in Norwegian costume. After the meeting we took the family to dinner at the Pagoda and Lyle and I checked in at the Missionary Home on Main Street and North Temple for five days. There were 211 missionaries and ten other mission presidents and their wives including Valdo and Ruth Benson (brother of Ezra Taft Benson), Central Germany; Earl and Ingrid Sorensen, Denmark; George and Orlene Poulsen, Hawaii; Crawford and Helen Davis, Alaska; Ned and Gwen Winder, Florida; Arthur and Nedra Strong, Argentina; Thomas and Diane Stone, French Polynesia; Joseph and Lois Edmunds, Belgium; Edward and Lucretia Nadle, Northern States; and Lamar and Nepal Williams, possibly Nigeria. We enjoyed the experiences in the missionary home and I was set apart by President David O. McKay, August 14, and Lyle was set apart by Henry D. Moyle. President Hugh B. Brown also assisted. Joseph Anderson recorded the blessings in shorthand and mailed them to us in Norway.
- We leased our house to Virginia Cutler, Dean of the College of Family Living, and moved into an apartment at Wymount Terrace for our last few days in Provo. We had a farewell testimonial in the Joseph Smith Building Auditorium Sunday, August 18. Approximately 1500 persons attended. Elder Richard L. Evans presided, released me as Stake President, and was the principal speaker. Fred Schwendiman was sustained as President with Harold Goodman and Carl Gibson as counselors. Other speakers were Ben E. Lewis, President of the East Sharon Stake; Ernest L. Wilkinson, BYU President; and our family (Sonja, Colleen, Dolores, Susan, Janet, Erlend, Lyle, Dean). Music was by the Stake Relief Society choir, Anne-Julie Stangeland from Norway ("Ved Ronderne"- "By the Mountains" by Edward Grieg), and a violin trio by Harold Goodman and his sons, Steven and Gordon. The program was recorded and the tape was mailed to Norway to us.
- On Sunday afternoon, August 25, father and mother, "Grandma Myrle", Rhoda, Don, and Nedra took us to Salt Lake City where Lyle and I and the children checked in at the Hotel Utah. In the late afternoon, Lyle and I visited at the hotel with President and Sister Ray Ingebretsen, former president of the Norwegian Mission. In the evening we all went to Wayne and Virginia's and had a good visit and a tasty dinner with our loved ones. When we returned to the hotel, Colleen and Sonja locked themselves into our bathroom and couldn't turn the lock. After many unsuccessful attempts, the building engineer had to use a hacksaw blade and saw the lock off to open the door. Early the next morning after farewells at the airport we boarded the jet plane and flew to New York where we stayed for two days in a luxurious suite at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel. Erlend especially enjoyed being in New York and visiting with Sister Murphy, one of his converts, Sister James and others.
- On Wednesday, August 28, we boarded the S.S. Queen Elizabeth and sailed for Europe with three other mission presidents and their families--Sorensens, Edmunds, and Bensons. How we loved the ship! We had four rooms in first class, excellent service, and delicious food. Sunday aboard the ship we held Priesthood meeting and Sacrament meeting. President Benson conducted the Priesthood meeting and Erlend taught an excellent lesson (without any lesson materials) on the "Israelites". I conducted the Sacrament meeting and we used it as a testimony meeting. We docked in Cherborg, France, Monday, September 2, where the Edmunds and Bensons departed for their mission field, and we sailed to Southampton where we and the Sorensons left the ship Tuesday, September 3, and spent Tuesday and Wednesday in London. We stayed at the Piccadilly Hotel. We visited the Mission Home where President Marion D. Hanks was presiding. After a good visit he and Sister Hanks took us to the Hyde Park Chapel where our former Provo neighbor, Dr. Robert Cundick, was practicing the pipe organ. He was pleasantly surprised to see us.
- Thursday, September 5, we left the Sorensens and flew to Oslo, Norway. We were met at the airport by President and Sister Joseph Gunderson, Tom and Rita Jean, and Elder Steen, Mission Secretary, and other members. We were taken to the Mission Home at Drammensvein 96G where we enjoyed a good visit and a delicious meal prepared by Sister Johanna Nordtvedt, mission home cook. The missionaries staying at the Mission Home were Elders Steen, Bailey, Thompson, and Sister Sullivan, Carruth, and Hansen (Sister Turid Hansen was a translator who had been converted in Kristiansand.) We soon held meetings with the mission leaders and on Sunday were the speakers in a combined Sacrament meeting of the two Oslo branches held at Osterhaugsgate 27. I recognized quite a number of older saints I knew during my first mission. Fritzoff Fluge did the interpretation for all except me. All the family except Sonja spoke. Sweet Colleen, age 7, stole the hearts of the people by her talk about the Joseph Smith story. After the meeting, they had us stay on the stand and everybody came up and greeted us as if we were in a reception line. As I said, "Takk for sist" (Thanks for the pleasure of your company the last time we were together") my wife picked it up and began using that expression. Erlend told her what it meant and not to use it.
- On the next morning we drove the Gundersons to the airport and saw them off for home. Then I felt the weight of the mission on my shoulders!
- (Note: Since I kept a daily diary while in Norway, I shall be brief and selective in the account I write here.)
- We made arrangements for Colleen, Dolores, and Susan to attend Norwegian schools. Erlend and Janet were called as full-time missionaries. Sister Nordtvedt and Sonja had a great affection for each other and Sonja would stand at my office window and watch for Sister Nordtvedt to arrive on the street car in the mornings. When she arrived, Sonja would run down the stairs, open the front door and welcome Sister Nordtvedt. They would go to the kitchen and Sister Nordtvedt would prepare cereal (grot) and other breakfast foods for the two of them. She was really sweet to Sonja and taught her to speak and understand Norwegian. Elder Bailey was also very kind to Sonja and took her with him sometimes to take Colleen to school, pick up the mail, etc. When Lyle and I were away on mission tours for a few days and returned to the Mission Home, if Sonja awoke in the night she would call, "Eldste Bailey!" rather than calling for her mother. Colleen didn't like school (2nd grade) the first three months because she couldn't understand Norwegian and felt strange in school. Many times she would leave school and get back to the Mission Home before Elder Bailey returned. After three months, she could speak the language like a native and loved school. In addition to the regular school subjects, she excelled in ice skating and could out-skate the Norwegian children.
- After we had been in Norway six days, Lyle and I went to Bergen, Haugesund, and Stavanger to hold meetings with the Elders and interview each of them.
- In Haugesund the missionaries asked if we would take time to visit one of the members who remembered me and wanted to greet me. When we went to see Sister Fjelland she embraced me as a long lost son. She said I was the very first missionary to contact her many years ago. She said I bore my testimony to her and gave her a Book of Mormon. She repeated my testimony to me and said she never forgot it. She had read the Book of Mormon several times, but it had taken her about twenty years to join the Church. Had I not returned to Norway I should not have known she ever joined the Church. We also went to visit my former landlady in Haugesund, Fru Sausjord, at Kai Gate. She didn't remember me at first but when I introduced myself she remembered. She had joined the Church because of the influence of my companion, Elder Julius Larsen from Ogden, and me. However, she had dropped out of the Church since then. We returned to Oslo for three or four days and then went north to Trondheim to meet with the missionaries. I was inspired when Elder LeGrand Vorkink spoke and bore his testimony at the meeting in Trondheim and called him soon thereafter to be second counselor in the mission presidency. I chose Arne Bakken to be my first counselor and his wife Elsa to be the Relief Society President for the mission. She was a 3rd or 4th generation Mormon and he was not a member at the time they were married. Because the Church meant so much to Elsa, Arne went to meetings with her and investigated the Church for twenty years before he joined. He had an "intellectual" conversion long before he received a "spiritual" conversion. Elder Jerry Dean from Salt Lake City was successful in getting Brother Bakken to fast and pray. Suddenly the Holy Ghost testified to Brother Bakken and he received his spiritual conversion. Brother Bakken is a civil engineer who is well respected, and was a wonderful counselor in the mission presidency. Brother Aanen Aanensen served as second counselor in the mission presidency most of the time I was in Norway. He and his wife were converts to the Church and are both very intelligent people. He was an IBM Computer Programmer, but later went into computer business for himself.
- Soon we had toured the mission, meeting with missionaries, and before we knew it we were holding district conferences in Oslo, Drammen, Trondheim, and Bergen. On Saturdays, we would hold missionary meetings for approximately seven hours; then meet with district presidencies, branch presidencies; and then hold a leadership meeting followed by a social. On Sundays we would hold two general sessions of conference for two hours each. Lyle and I would generally stay over for Monday to provide an opportunity for me to hold individual interviews with each of the missionaries in the district.
- The president of the European Missions, including Norway, was Elder Theodore M. Burton. He held a three-day meeting for building missionaries, their leaders, and all the mission presidents and wives at Ystad, Sweden, which we enjoyed very much and which gave us good direction in our missionary and chapel building program. Languages spoken at the meeting were English, French, Dutch, Finnish, Danish, Swedish, and Norwegian. President Stephan Covey and his wife, Sandra, were present as guests. He spoke to us and she sang. President Grant Thorn was also a guest mission president and instructed us in missionary work. President Stanley Bird, Area Building Supervisor, gave us insights into the Church building program.
- We enjoyed taking our family in the Mission VW bus when time permitted to various branches to give programs at Sacrament meetings.
- On October 10, 1963, I called Janet Lynne on a full-time mission and set her apart with the assistance of Elder LeGrand Stuart Vorkink, who was second counselor in the mission presidency. She was assigned to labor in Oslo with Sister Ruth Johnson as her first companion. On October 15, I called Erlend on a one-year mission and set him apart. He was assigned to labor in Halden to be a companion to Elder Neldon Maxfield. It was somewhat frustrating for him since he had recently filled a mission in the Eastern States and had been a mission leader. He had to start over as a junior companion and also learn a new language. He had a message, but lacked the language for it. However, he soon learned the language and had a good mission in Norway.
- Lyle and I were invited to attend the Servicemen's Conference in Berchtesgaden in the Bavarian Alps November 5,6,7, 1963. We flew from Oslo to Copenhagen where we joined President and Sister Earl Sorensen of the Danish Mission and flew to Munich where we joined President and Sister Fletcher of the Swedish Mission. The six of us took the train for three hours from Munich to Berchtesgaden where we stayed for three days at the General Walker Hotel. We thoroughly enjoyed the three-day conference at the beautiful mountain retreat of Adolph Hitler. There were approximately 600 servicemen in attendance. Elder Harold B. Lee of the Council of the Twelve presided. Elder Marion D. Hanks, President Theodore M. Burton, President Tauffer of the Swiss Temple and mission presidents of the European missions and wives were also present. I had the privilege of speaking at one of the general sessions.
- On November 24, 1963, we organized an English speaking Branch in Oslo.
- December 4th and 5th, Lyle and I were in Stockholm with President and Sister Fletcher, President and Sister Sorensen, and President and Sister Blythe Gardener of the South German Mission. We met to learn of the successful missionary programs in South Germany using flip chart pictures and projectors, and programs being used in the Swedish Mission. We were impressed with the modern mission home and its beautiful location on the outskirts of Stockholm. We were impressed with the missionary programs in the two missions and received helpful information.
- Erlend came December 24 to be with us for Christmas. We had an enjoyable evening singing and making a tape to send home and preparing for Christmas. On Christmas morning we arose and opened presents. In addition to our family, the following joined with us: Sisters Tweten, Carruth, Sullivan, Hansen, and Elders Bailey and Paulsen. We received from Harold Goodman four tapes of our farewell testimonial held in the Joseph Smith Building, which we listened to on Christmas morning. We thought of home and wondered how our parents and loved ones were enjoying Christmas. About 1:30 p.m. our telephone rang and I was called to the phone to take a long distance call from America. It was my brother Wayne and Virginia calling from Salt Lake City. The connection was very clear and I could hear them as if they were in the next room. Their message was the "Father had a heart attack on Christmas Eve and passed away in the LDS Hospital." What a shock! He and mother had been on their way to spend Christmas in SLC with Wayne, Virginia and family. As I whispered the message to Lyle and the children, they all burst into tears. The news cast a spell of gloom on all of us. Lyle called President Burton to see if I could fly home for the funeral. He advised against it. We all agreed that we hope we can be as ready to meet death as Father was. He has surely earned his place in the Celestial Kingdom. He was 76.
- On December 31, we received a telegram, "Betty Porter died Sunday, Flu." That was another sad blow within a few days. Betty was the wife of Blaine Porter at BYU and was Treasurer-Manager of the BYU Employees Federal Credit Union. Lyle was working with Betty and I was president of the Credit Union Board for a year before going to Norway. I had helped organize the Credit Union in 1955, together with six other people, and was a charter member. (My account number is 3. Bryant Jacobs is 1, and Weldon J. Taylor is 2.)
- We went at night to the Church at Osterhausgate 27 for a New Year's Eve social and meeting. We had a meeting at 11:15 p.m. Lyle spoke for 15 minutes and I spoke until midnight and then led the group in a New Year's prayer as the old year passed and the New Year entered.
- We enjoyed the "Jule Tre" (Christmas tree) parties before and after the holidays. On January 4, we drove about 80 miles on icy roads with our family and Elder Terry Bailey to Hamar for such a party--as we did each year. Our children enjoyed going around the tree with all of us and singing Christmas songs. The excitement ran high when "Julenissen" came with presents.
- Erlend was transferred to Haslum where he worked with Elder Baugh. They met a Scottish family by the name of Sims. When Mrs. Sims saw them coming up the walk to the house she said, "I wonder what these fine looking young men are selling." Mr. Sims remarked, "I don't know, but whatever it is, buy it!" That's exactly what they did. We enjoyed them in the English-speaking branch and Brother Sims became our Gospel Doctrine teacher in Sunday School.
- On Monday, March 23, 1964, we flew with half of our missionaries on a Braaten S.S.F.E. DC-7 to "South End on Sea," England, and had a 3-hour bus drive from there through the beautiful, green British countryside, through London, and to Surrey and the London Temple. The missionaries stayed at Surrey, but Lyle and I stayed at the Manor House with President and Sister Selvoy Boyer. At 7:00 p.m. the missionaries joined us for a fireside at the Manor House. President Boyer spoke at the fireside and we all enjoyed the evening immensely. We had several endowment sessions, baptismal service, question-and-answer sessions with the Temple presidency, and a testimony meeting in the Temple Tuesday and Wednesday. The other half of our missionaries flew from Oslo to the Gatwick airport near the temple. The plane carried the missionaries who had come with us back to Oslo. Lyle and I stayed with the missionaries and had the same thing for them Thursday and Friday, then took buses Saturday to South End on Sea and flew to Oslo with them. As we arrived in Oslo too late for many of the missionaries to take trains back to their areas, we had 30 of them sleep on the floor at the Mission Home with their "dynas" (feather ticks or sleeping bags). The spirituality among the missionaries increased very noticeably as a result of the temple experience and missionary effectiveness improved.
- The next time we left Norway was to attend a mission presidents' conference called by President Ezra Taft Benson, who had replaced President Theodore M. Burton as European Mission President, to be held at the Swiss Temple. Lyle, Susan, Cathy Clarke, and I left Oslo Tuesday, May 5, 1964, and landed in Copenhagen, where Susan stayed to visit with the mission president's daughter, Karen Sorensen. President and Sister Sorensen, President and Sister Fletcher, and President and Sister Aspland joined us in Copenhagen for the flight to Zurich, where Cathy left us. We continued on to Bern, after stopping at the Mission Home in Zurich where President and Sister Russon served lunch to us. The train ride was smooth and enjoyable. We stayed at the Stadhoff Hotel in Bern. In the evening we enjoyed an endowment session at the Temple with President and Sister Trauffer, President and Sister Benson, and the mission presidents and wives from the European missions. We held an all-day session on Wednesday at the Bureau of Information Chapel and conference room adjacent to the Temple. In the evening we dined at the beautiful Belleview Hotel where we enjoyed the food and a program of Swiss yodeling. On Thursday we continued our meetings and left in the afternoon by bus for a tour of Intelocken to see the Alps. The view was breathtaking all the way. Friday we continued our meetings and went to Luzanne with the group where we attended the National Swiss Fair. Saturday we returned by train to Zurich and from there to Copenhagen where we visited for two or three hours at the Mission Home. We picked up Susan who had enjoyed her visit with Karen and others while we were at the mission presidents' conference. We flew to Oslo and found all well.
- On May 21, Mother and Aunt Lucile Madsen arrived for a visit with us. Mother had fallen down the escalator at the airport in New York and was a bit bruised and shaken. We enjoyed their stay with us and took them to missionary and church meetings and to the west coast to Stavanger, Haugesund, and Bergen and took mother later in the summer with us to the beautiful Hardanger Fjord on an overnight boat trip.
- On June 13, our new Oslo chapel at Hekkveien 9 was finished. We had used the Oslo missionaries to work as teams on diversion days for 1/2 day a week to help build the new church building. We had several church building missionaries, under the supervision of Brother Paul Hansen, help build the chapel and many members contributed many hours of labor. The last day before the chapel was to be used we worked hard and late. Brother Karl Lagerberg, Area Building Supervisor, had been in Oslo the last two weeks directing and helping the completion. As we ended the work night everyone was jubilant. Lyle stood on her head and Karl did acrobatics. He really got a charge out of Lyle because she could stand on her head. We held a luncheon at 3:30 p.m. the 13th to honor the building supervisors and labor missionaries. Brother Stan Bird, Scandinavian Area Building Supervisor, and his wife were also present. At 8:00 p.m. we held a social and service of Thanksgiving in the new building. A large crowd was present. The next day, Sunday, we held a Thanksgiving service in the chapel which I conducted. We had many speakers and expressed gratitude to the Lord and to all who had contributed in any way to the new church building. In the evening, we held a general session of the Oslo District Conference with President Kare Porsboll conducting. (Details of the meetings are contained in my diary.)
- We had many spiritual experiences and witnessed many conversions and baptisms. I should like to record one of them here.
- Story of Conversion, Solveig Laervik (Robb). At ten o'clock one evening in early July, 1964, a knock came on the door of the Mission Home in Oslo. My son, Erlend, who was serving a second mission, answered the door and there stood a lovely young lady of approximately 19 years of age who introduced herself as Solveg Laervik from South Africa. She asked if this were the headquarters for the Mormon Church in Norway, and when he answered in the affirmative, she said, "I want to be baptized."
- This was an unusual surprise and a delightful shock to Erlend. He invited her into our living room where my wife and I were introduced to her. I asked her why she wanted to become a member of the Church and where she had learned about the Church and the Gospel. She then related the following story.
- Her mother was British and her father Norwegian. The family lived in South Africa, but she and her mother were on a vacation trip and had been visiting with an uncle and aunt for a few weeks in Stavanger, on the West Coast of Norway. Shortly after they arrived, two young American men came to the house. Her aunt answered the door and although the conversation was in Norwegian, after a moment she said to them, "Just a minute and I'll get someone who can speak English with you." Solveig then came to the door and visited with them for about a half hour. They told her of the great and important message of the restoration and bore their testimonies to her. They showed her a copy of the Book of Mormon, told her about it, and asked if she would like to read it. She was impressed by their message, sincerity, and enthusiasm. She replied, "Yes, I would like to read the Book of Mormon, but I do not read Norwegian."
- The junior companion, Elder James W. Jensen, from Salt Lake City, said to her, "I have recently come to Norway and I brought some English copies of the Book of Mormon; I'll be happy to give one of them to you." She agreed and soon was given the book.
- When her uncle returned home that evening, she showed him her newly acquired book. He is a Lutheran minister in the Norwegian State Church, and upon seeing the Book of Mormon, told Solveig not to read it, but to get rid of it at once. He said it is a false book, an evil book, an abominable book. His tirade against it caused Solveig to have an increased desire, even a curiosity, to read it. She hid the book under the mattress in her bedroom and spent many hours reading it.
- She followed Moroni's admonition to ponder the things she read and to ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if they were not true; and she received a witness by the power of the Holy Ghost that they are true. (Moroni 10:3-5)
- She determined that when she and her mother left Stavanger she would look up the Mormon Church in Oslo and ask to be baptized.
- We had our son and the assistant to the president, Elder Richard Torgerson of Salt Lake City, teach her more about the gospel by giving her all of the missionary discussions during the week she was in Oslo. This week was happily concluded by her being baptized and confirmed a member of the Church.
- Solveig's mother had not resisted the baptism, but just before they were to leave Oslo, enroute to their home in South Africa, Solveig received a letter form her father stating that he had found a new Lutheran chapel and he looked forward to the family attending meetings there. Solveig asked me how she could tell her father she had been baptized without his being terribly upset. I asked for his address and told her I would contact the mission president in South Africa at once and have him send missionaries to visit her father. By the time Solveig and her mother arrived home, missionaries had visited her father and he was taking the discussions.
- (Later: Our daughter Susan, who was about the same age as Solveig, corresponded with her and kept informed of Solveig's activities in the Church. But when Susan was married and moved away a couple of years after we returned home, we lost contact with Solveig.
- We received a letter one summer from my former first counselor, Arne Bakken, telling us about the annual temple excursion of the Norwegian saints to the London Temple. He said there was a girl and a young man there from South Africa who were married in the Temple while the Norwegian saints were there, that she had previously been baptized in Norway, and she sends her regards to us.
- In the summer of 1975, we received a call from Solveig, she was in Salt Lake City with her husband, Chris Robb, and their four little daughters. They had recently moved from South Africa to Alberta, Canada, and were on a visit to Utah. We invited them to come to Provo and stay with us for a visit and go with us to the Provo Temple. Our joy was great to renew acquaintance with Solveig, to learn of her happy life since joining the Church, and to meet her wonderful husband and children. We felt their great love for each other and their complete dedication to the gospel and Church.
- Solveig said her parents had nearly joined the Church a few years ago, but their well meaning friends had discouraged it. She hopes and prays her parents will yet know the truth and have the courage to accept it.)
- On Saturday, July 18, we (Lyle, Mother, Erlend, Aunt Lucile, and I) went to the London Temple on a chartered plane with about 60 of our members for a week's temple excursion. On Sunday the missionaries who were with us and Lyle, President Boyer, and I spent l0 hours in the temple memorizing the parts in Norwegian so we could serve as ordinance workers. I officiated in the endowment sessions during the week. We did many endowment sessions, baptisms, and sealings during the week in addition to question-and-answer sessions with the temple presidency and a testimony meeting. We also spent a day sight-seeing in London. On July 22, however, Erlend, Aunt Lucile, and Elder Bailey, left for Utah via S.S. Queen Elizabeth to New York and by air to SLC.
- Friday, August 28, 1964, was our 25th (silver) wedding anniversary. We reflected on twenty-five years of happiness and expressed gratitude for our family and goodly parentage and the many blessings we had received. In the evening we really dressed up (Lyle was in a beautiful silver brocade evening dress made by Anik Baboomian, one of my Iranian secretaries, from material I purchased in Baghdad in 1953.) Through the arrangements and financing of the family and office staff, Lyle and I went to the new Fornebu Airport Dining Hall for a delicious steak dinner. Just before we left, a delivery boy brought us a dozen long-stemmed pink roses from the two Oslo branches and a lovely silver dish from Bakkens and Mortengs. The day was a happy one - long to be cherished and remembered. (A year ago today we had boarded the Queen Elizabeth in New York and sailed for Europe.)
- Thursday, September 3, was a sad day for us because mother left for home. We had thoroughly enjoyed having her with us for the summer. We were glad she could be with us in Norway to help ease the pain and the loneliness for her because of Father's passing last December. She was courageous and was making a good adjustment. She stayed for one day with President and Sister Sorensen in Copenhagen enroute home.
- In September we needed urgently some copies of a teacher-training book. Elder Kesler, Mission Secretary, and I went to Osterhaugsgate 27 to see if we could locate some copies of "LAERBOK" by Fritzhof Fluge in the large basement storage room. Elder Kesler had looked previously and could not find any. Together we looked and looked in vain. As we were going to leave and I reached to turn out the lights it seemed that an unseen force took hold of me and turned me down an aisle. I fell to my knees and there before my eyes were 70 copies of the book for which we had searched. Goose flesh came out on me and I felt as if I had experienced a spiritual manifestation.
- In September, Lyle and I and Bente Bakken went to Liege, Belgium, to attend a three-day Church Builders Conference at the Palais des Congres (Congress Building). We enjoyed the meetings and social activities. Bente, concert pianist from Norway, played piano solos of Edvard Grieg's compositions. The conference was under the direction of Albert V. Stirling, with President Benson presiding, and was well arranged. I had the privilege of speaking at the second general session of the conference. The assembly hall was like the United Nations Building and had head sets at each seat. Simultaneous translations were arranged to provide for eight different languages which were spoken at the conference. (Details of the conference are in my diary.)
- On January 25, 1965, I flew to Frankfurt for a two-day meeting with President Ezra Taft Benson and the 12 mission presidents and the building committee for Europe. I met with President Benson after the regular meetings and had him sign the recommendation papers for the sale of the Church building and property at Osterhaugsgate 27 in Oslo. Shortly thereafter, President and sister Benson and their daughter Beth came to Norway. We held some great missionary meetings, he interviewed each missionary, and we drove to Halden where he dedicated the chapel, Friday, February 12. The next day we flew to Trondheim, but when we arrived there was so much fallen snow on the runway that we kept on going until we landed in Bodo in the Arctic Circle. We were as far north of Trondheim as Oslo was south. We were guests of SAS at the Norrona Hotel where we enjoyed a good visit, rest, and delicious dinner. We went shopping and President Benson purchased a fur hat. We left at 6:00 p.m. and flew to Trondheim where we arrived at the Church building in time for the banquet. The next day, Sunday, February 14, 1965, a big meeting was held at which time President Benson dedicated the new church building at Erik Jarls Gate 5. Music was provided by the choir; by Brother Garborg, LDS opera and concert singer from Hamar; and by Bente Bakken, accomplished concert pianist. There was a large crowd present including newspaper representatives and we had good news coverage of the dedication of our new building. Janet and Dolores were also present, but they traveled by train rather than flying with us to Trondheim. Chuck went back to Oslo by train but Janet joined us as we flew to Bergen where we held a large public meeting as well as a missionary meeting. After the evening meeting we stayed at the Bristol Hotel where we dined and had a private Edvard Greig concert by Bente. (We had visited the home and composing room of Edvard Greig during the day and that made the concert especially enjoyable and meaningful for us.) We returned to Oslo the next day and President Benson set apart Aanen Aanensen as my second counselor. Until that time I had a Norwegian 1st counselor but a missionary second counselor. From then on I had a missionary as Assistant to the President. We had thoroughly enjoyed being with President and Sister Benson for five days, and Susan had especially enjoyed having Beth Benson with her at the Mission Home.
- On Monday, March 22, we flew on a Braatens SAFE DC-7 to Zurich, Switzerland, with half of our missionaries on a temple excursion to the Swiss Temple, as we had done the year earlier to the London Temple. From Zurich we took buses on a 5 1/2 hour drive through Interloken and the Swiss Alps. Lyle and I stayed with President and Sister Traffer at the Temple President's home beside the temple. We were thrilled with the temple experiences and the tremendous spirit we felt in the temple. The second half of our missionaries arrived Wednesday afternoon and the first group returned to Oslo. Janet was with us and received her endowments in the Swiss Temple as she was serving as a missionary. On the way back to Oslo, the plane with 38 Elders and 6 Sisters, had one engine go out the last 15 minutes of the flight--it miraculously made a safe landing at the airport with just one motor functioning.
- In early May, Lyle's mother arrived in Norway to spend a couple of happy months with us. She went with us to the west coast by train where we enjoyed meetings with the missionaries, district conferences, and the beautiful Atlantic Hotel in Stavanger. She also went with us by automobile to Bergen and back on one trip. The roads are narrow, winding and in most places two cars cannot pass except for occasional turn-out points. When we were back in Oslo, Grandma Myrle said, "Thanks for the ride, but promise me one thing: that you'll never drive to Bergen again!" She also went with us to Trondheim and other places. She and Janet visited in Stockholm and Copenhagen. On Monday, July 11, Janet and Grandma Myrle left Norway enroute to Utah, via Denmark and the London Temple where we joined them. We had enjoyed Grandma Myrle's visit and also having Janet with us for two years in Norway. She was an excellent missionary and was a great help to me the latter part of her mission in the mission office. She typed book after book in Norwegian for us to print for lesson manuals as we had to do our own translations and printings at that time. She was an efficient, capable, never-complaining, devoted missionary. She and Erlend had both been a great joy to us in the missionary effort as well as in our family. We went with the Saints to the London Temple, July 17, for a week and spent several days there with Janet and Grandma Myrle before they left for home. We stayed in the Mannor House with President and Sister England and attended many sessions in the temple. My counselors and their wives were with us and I received permission for President Bakken and President Aanensen to officiate at some of the sessions so I didn't do all of the officiating.
- Lyle and I went to Frankfurt July 29, 1965, to attend the youth conference, "Freud Echo" ("Echo of Happiness") and a Mission President's Conference. It was a six-day activity with meetings, receptions, roadshows, speech festivals, music and dance festivals, and a day-long boat trip on the Rhine. While on the huge Rhine River boat a man came to me and introduced himself as John Heidenreich. As we visited he told me the story of his conversion to the Church. He was a Congregationalist Minister in New York where he was happy and well paid. He had a new chapel, a fine home and automobile furnished him, a good youth group in his congregation, and everything seemed ideal. He went to California on a church assignment of some kind and while he was away the LDS missionaries visited his home. His 14-year-old son took to them and to their message. He believed the Joseph Smith story and seriously investigated the church and gospel. I'm not sure how long his father was away, but when he returned, his son said to him, "Dad, I want to join the Mormon Church and I'd like you to join with me!" Imagine how preposterous that sounded to the father. The next summer the father went went again and stopped in Salt Lake City for a guided tour of Temple Square. Dr. Truman Madsen from BYU was the tour guide. John Heidenreich was impressed and asked many questions all of which Dr. Madsen answered well. The two men established a lasting friendship and an exchange of correspondence soon resulted. When Mr. Heindenreich was home again his son said to him, "Father, I have a favor to ask of you. Will you go with me to the Hill Cumorah and into the Sacred Grove to pray about the Mormon Church and the Joseph Smith story?" The father thought for a while and then concluded that it could do no harm as an accommodation to his son. They went to the Sacred Grove and knelt in prayer just as Joseph Smith had done. Although they did not have the same kind of revelation that Joseph received, yet they both felt the spirit of truth and a confirmation of the Joseph Smith story. Then it became difficult for Mr. Heidenreich. He studied the gospel, corresponded with Truman Madsen, and prayed. He received a testimony and there was only one thing to do--give up his choice ministerial position and join the church. This caused him to have to find a new way of supporting himself and his family. Consequently, he came to BYU and enrolled in the Summer School to pursue a teaching certificate. I was Director of Summer School at the time, and that is the reason he remembered me and recognized me on the boat. After attending the BYU for his Master's degree he was employed to teach Seminary for the church. He was soon named principal of Skyline High School Seminary in SLC. He had spent the two summers in Europe conducting some youth activities for the Swiss Government. He is a very popular Seminary teacher and church speaker. He loves young people and they reciprocate.
- In addition to President and Sister Benson, Elder and Sister Howard W. Hunter were present at the youth conference. There were 1600 German-speaking youth present for the conference. The testimony meeting is something I shall always remember!
- On August 4, Lyle, Susan, Dolores, Colleen and I started a two-week trip to northern Norway. We traveled by train, bus, and boat, and held meetings with saints and missionaries from Trondheim to Mo-I-Rana, Bodo, Narvik, Harsrad, Tromso, Hammerfest, and Kirkenes. We had just 22 members in Hammerfest, the northern-most city in the world, and they really treated us royally and served delicious food at Sister Rostviks. At Kirkenes we were met by Brother Hovland and taken to the small home for dinner and a meeting. They were the only two members in Kirkenes and hadn't been visited by a mission president for 7 1/2 years. We held a wonderful testimony meeting and administered and passed the sacrament. We went with them to spend the evening visiting a family of Seventh-day Adventists, the Simonsens. We had a lovely and lively evening dining and discussing the gospel. I sent the two missionaries from Hammerfest, Elders Mark Johnson and Eric Olsen, to give them the discussions after we left. Soon Fru Simonsen was converted and baptized in the fjord. We traveled from Kirkenes to Trondheim for two glorious and relaxing days of sunshine on our return.
- When Elder Erin Milligan completed his mission and was in Oslo the Sunday before departure he was asked to speak in Sacrament meeting. Among other things he told them was that he was baptized in President Peterson's swimming pool in Iran. He told them that after the baptism I patted him on the head and said, "Son, you'll be a good missionary some day." He had served his entire mission while I was President and was a very good missionary. He had one of the Relief Society sisters knit some Norwegian sweaters to take home to his mother and sisters in Logan. (I recalled that when we were in Iran the children didn't have much to do in the summer time when school was out. They did a lot of swimming in our pool, but Lyle decided to teach them how to knit. They each did a sweater--4 boys and 4 girls, including Erin, Erlend, Janet and Susan. When Cleve Milligan, Erin and Jim's father, would see the boys knitting he would say, "Sissies!" but when the sweaters were finished and the boys were wearing them, he'd proudly say to others, "My boy knit that sweater himself!") When Erin went to get the Norwegian sweaters, the sister was knitting and she put down her knitting to go into the other room to get the sweaters. Erin picked up the knitting and asked if he could try doing some of it. When she came back into the room and observed him knitting, she said, "You knit just like Sister Peterson!" He replied, "I should; she is the one who taught me how to knit."
- On October 14, 1965, I signed a contract for the purchase of property on which to build a new chapel in Drammen at Hotvedtveien 160 for Kroner 125000 ($17,500). It is a beautiful residential district and on the main highway through the city.
- Tuesday, November 30, Lyle and I flew to Copenhagen and joined President and Sister Sorensen of the Danish Mission, President and Sister Fletcher of the Swedish Mission, and President and Sister Asplund of the Finnish Mission, and all of us flew to Geneva, Switzerland, for a mission presidents' seminar. We stayed at the beautiful Rhine Hotel for $18.50 a day. In the evening we went with other mission presidents and wives to a quaint but charming restaurant and ate cheese fondue. The seminar was under the direction of President and Sister Howard W. Hunter and President and Sister Theodore M. Burton. Besides the above mentioned others present were Dale and Muriel Curtis, Netherland Mission; Joseph and Lois Edmunds, Franko-Belgium Mission. There were also some church building leaders and others present for part of our seminar. We had excellent meetings and discussions for two days. We also went to the League of Nations Building and had a personally conducted tour. We also had a tour of Geneva. We went to the French East Mission Home and had a delicious dinner and a fireside program. The conference concluded on Friday, December 1, and we had been instructed and edified. We flew to Paris with the Sorensens and Fletchers. We visited the lourve, Eiffel Tower, and had a tour of Paris. We attended the opera and saw "The Barber of Seville." We had an interesting stay in Paris following the inspirational mission presidents' seminar in Geneva. We returned to Norway refreshed, rested, and ready to pursue our mission responsibilities with increased enthusiasm.
- On March 17, 1966, a Brother and Sister Johnson arrived with a short-wave radio as a gift to the Mission Home from KSL and WRUL. Elder Proctor climbed the flag pole and fastened one end of the antenna to it and the other end to the roof of the mission home. The next evening, we turned on the radio and to our surprise heard the last half of the BYU-Army basketball game at N.I.T. in Madison Square Garden in New York. BYU was behind but won the game with a score of 66 to 60. They won a place in the finals for the next night and we were excited. The next evening we invited the mission office staff to join us to hear BYU play in the finals. We popped popcorn and formed a cheering section for BYU. Our enthusiasm was rewarded as BYU won the National Invitational Tournament. That was the second time BYU had won the NIT and we were proud of Coach Stan Watts and the team. On April 9, we were able to tune in on the third session of General Conference in SLC and were thrilled to hear talks being given by President David O. McKay, and Elders Thomas S. Monson and Harold B. Lee.
- On Easter Sunday, April 10, 1966, the two Norwegian Branches combined for sacrament meeting and our family were the speakers and a special musical number was sung by a missionary quartet. Colleen, age l0, spoke on the 10 commandments--a talk she prepared herself and gave without notes--and stole the show with her perfect Norwegian. Dolores, Susan, Lyle and I spoke on subjects related to Easter. The next day Brother and Sister Otto Gebhardt came to the mission home and presented Colleen with a 17 jewel wrist watch because she talked so fluently and well in sacrament meeting. They said her tone-fall is perfect and nobody could tell she wasn't born in Oslo. (Brother Gebhardt was in the branch presidency and owned a couple of jewelry and watch stores.) Colleen was so overwhelmed and surprised, she said, "I'll talk in meeting every Sunday!" All of our children did well with the language and spoke it fluently. When Sonja would play with Norwegian children it pleased us to hear her speak such fluent and perfect Norwegian. When she would play by herself she always (after the first few months) spoke Norwegian rather than English. She would often go into the mission home chapel and play sunday school in Norwegian. She would make the announcements, lead the singing as she sang hymns, say the prayers, give the talks, and teach the lessons. The lady translators, whose office was a room separated from the chapel by only a drapery, would nearly crack up listening to Sonja. Colleen, Dolores, and Susan did very well in school. Sonja was too young to attend. Janet and Erlend were very good missionaries. Lyle learned the language and gave all her talks in Norwegian at the Norwegian meetings. I recall that she and Erlend and I bore our testimonies in Norwegian the first fast Sunday we were in Norway. Everyone was surprised that Erlend and Lyle could express their testimonies in Norwegian after so short a time. Lyle got along just fine until she tried to say "love" in Norwegian. It is a rather long and difficult word to say, "kjaerlighet" and has one "ae" sound we do not have in English. As she attempted to say the word a few times she had full audience participation--everyone was saying it with her. She commented after the meeting, "How could I lose with so much support." It was surely a good attention getter.
- On May 2, 1966, Brother Judd from the Church Building Department and I flew to Bergen and negotiated the sale of the church property at Vaskerelv Gate 1 to the Menigheten in Bergen for Kroner 275,000 (approximately $40,000). The beautiful new chapel at Fantoft was nearing completion.
- As a family, we drove the Mercedes Bentz from Oslo to Stockholm to attend the first Nordic LDS Youth Festival for young people from 14 to 26 years of age. It was my first experience driving on the left side of the road and was confusing in the cities. The Youth Conference ("Fest-i-Nord" or "Festival of the North") was for Norway, Denmark, Finland, and Sweden. It was held Thursday, June 30, 1966, to and including Sunday, July 3. It consisted of sightseeing in Stockholm, sports activities, dance festival, roadshows, music festival, meeting for girls, priesthood meeting for boys, and religious and testimony meetings for everyone. Many were present from each country and the festival was a great success. It concluded with a testimony meeting which lasted for several hours and was very spiritual. Susan and Chuck really enjoyed the experiences of the youth conference and participated in the various activities. We talked President and Sister Sorensen and famiy into driving back via Oslo on their way to Copenhagen. We enjoyed their visit. As President Sorensen and I were comparing common elements in our Danish ancestry we discovered we came from the same family in Denmark. I also discovered that President Sorensen had lived in Mt. Pleasant for a few years when he was young. He invited Lyle and me to fly to Denmark enroute to the London Temple where we were going that month for our third and last temple excursion with the Norwegian Saints. We flew to northern Denmark and were met by President and Sister Sorensen. They took us in their Impala to the beautiful places our people lived in Denmark - Jettsmark, Panderup, Kas, Norup, and Jerlev. We stayed over night in Arhus. We took pictures of those areas, which I have placed in my Book of Remembrance. We decided our people had great faith in the gospel to leave such beautiful places to go to the deserts of Utah in those early days. We were grateful to the Sorensens for their kindness to us and for their hospitality at the mission home in Copenhagen where we stayed over night with them on our way to the temple.
- We enjoyed the week at the temple with the saints. On the Sunday evening we went to the Hyde Park Chapel in London to attend Sacrament meeting. There we met President and Sister Leo Jacobsen who were enroute to Oslo to take my place and President and Sister Don Christensen who were enroute to Copenhagen to take Prsident Sorensen's place. Interestingly enough, the two high counselors who were to be the speakers at Sacrament meeting were ill and absent. Therefore, President Jacobsen, President Christensen and I were the speakers. We returned to Norway with the saints from the temple excursion and welcomed the Jacobsens to the mission. We moved out of the mission home and stayed the last three days at the Norum Hotel. It was hard to say "goodbye" to our wonderful saints and missionaries. The farewell social and meeting were sad but a beautiful spirit prevailed. We had enjoyed the blessings of the Lord during our nearly three years in Norway. We loved the members of the Church and the missionaries. They had worked well with us and we had seen steady progress in the church. We had experienced many faith-promoting incidents and had welcomed many new members into the church. I was grateful to President Bakken and President Aanensen who had served so capably as my counselors. Others who had served as my second counselor were Elder Stuart Vorkink from Cedar City, Elder Gary Olsen from California, and Elder Richard Torgerson from Salt Lake City. Assistants to the President were Elders Terry Michaelis from Bountiful, Steven Berkstead from Salt Lake City, and Elder John Marshall from Los Angeles. Mission secretaries were Elders Norman Steen, Terry Bailey, Steven Kesler, David Sims, Kirby Ludvigsen, and John Kingsford.
- During our stay in Norway, the European Mission Presidents who visited us and helped us in many ways were President Theodore M. Burton, President Ezra Taft Benson, and President Howard W. Hunter. We also enjoyed visits and help by Elder Mark E. Petersen, Bishop Victor L. Brown, Elder Thomas Fyans, Lavern W. Parmley, who was President of the Primary for the Church and who visited us for two years, Margaret Jackson, who was lst Counselor in the YWMIA, Carlos G. Smith, who was Superintendent of the YMMIA for the Church, Clark and Helen Lindquist Stowel of the YMMIA General Board, Alice Wilkinson and Grace Gowans of the Relief Society General Board, J. Holman Waters and Walace F. Toronto of the Sunday School General Board. We were indebted to Elsie Bakken, who had served faithfully for three years as President of the Relief Society in Norway, Sister Solveig Arntsen, who had served as Primary, the Aanensens and Pedersens (Stein and Gullaug) who served in the MIA for the mission, Georg Pedersen, and other Priesthood leaders--too many to name. We were grateful for all the mission, district, and branch leaders. We were grateful the Lord had permitted us to preside over the church in Norway from September, 1963, to July, 1966. It was a rich and rewarding time in our lives!
- We (Lyle, Susan, Dolores, Colleen, Sonja, and I) flew to Copenhagen and stayed a day and a night. From there we flew to Amsterdam where we toured for a day and stayed one night. We then flew to London and stayed a day or two at the Picadilly Hotel at Picadilly Square. We met the Sorensen family there and went with them all the way to Utah. We sailed from Southampton to New York on the S.S. Queen Elizabeth. We (Sorensons and we) had ordered a new Impala Chevrolet automobile which we picked up in New York City. We followed the Church History trail on our way home with stops at Palmyra, Niagra Falls, Kirtland, Carthage, Far West, Omaha, etc. It was great to be reunited with Erlend, Janet, Mother, Grandma Myrle and all our loved ones and to be back in our home at 1170 Holly Circle. We were pleased to have an honorable release from our mission and to give an oral report to President McKay, President Tanner, President Joseph Fielding Smith, and Elder Thomas S. Monson.
- 1966 - 1976
- I began teaching upper division and graduate courses in the College of Business and was also asked to resume my position of Director of Summer School at BYU. I had an office in the Jesse Knight Building and also one in the Smoot Administration Building. I was called to serve on the High Council in the BYU Fifth Stake where Harold Goodman, my former second counselor in the BYU Third Stake, was the Stake President. I served on the Stake Melchizedek Priesthood Committee and was Elders Quorum advisor and Ward Advisor in the BYU Fourth Ward where Blaine Anderson was Bishop. I was called to the General Board of the Deseret Sunday School Union and served in that capacity under the leadership of President David Lawrence McKay from February 11, 1967 to April 18, 1967. A conference was held in the Fieldhouse April 30 and two new stakes were organized on campus--the BYU 7th Stake and the BYU 8th Stake. I was called and sustained as President of the 7th Stake and was set apart the same day by President A. Theodore Tuttle of the First Council of Seventy. I chose as my counselors, Lee B. Valentine, former President of the Argentine Mission, and Paul R. Cheesman, former President of the Florida Stake. David S. Yarn, Jr. was sustained as President of the BYU 8th Stake with Robert J. Smith and Robert K. Thomas as counselors. In September, Lee Valentine took his 10-year-old daughter to the Screa Theatre on a daddy date one rainy night. As they were returning home through the river bottom and came to the new extension of University Avenue, the asphalt absorbed the lights of the automobiles and Lee drove on the new road to make a right turn and was struck broadside by a southbound automobile. He was taken to the Utah Valley Hospital where he was examined and it was determined he had a broken leg but didn't seem to be in any danger. The doctor decided to let him rest until morning to set the broken leg. However, during the night Lee passed away. The daughter was not injured, but only shaken up in the accident. Gregory E. Austin was then called to be my Second Counselor. BYU Stake Presidents were: Joseph T. Bentley, BYU 1st Stake; Clyde D. Sandgren, 2nd; Fred A. Schwendiman, 3rd; William R. Siddoway, 4th; A. Harold Goodman, 5th; Wayne B. Hales, 6th; Dean A. Peterson, 7th; David H. Yarn, 8th. Later: Carl D. Jones, BYU 9th Stake; and Ivan J. Barrett, BYU l0th Stake. Our Regional Representative of the Twelve for several years was G. LaMont Richards, son of Elder LeGrand Richards.
- Our stake organization consisted of the following in addition to the Stake Presidency: Larry D. Hartman, Stake Clerk; Gary Beus, Assistant Stake Clerk and later Stake Clerk; John W. Wanlass, Jonathan Graff, assistant clerks; Christine Norman, Stake Secretary. High Council: J. Grant Stevenson, and later Bishop of the 76th Ward; Don L. Earl, and later Bishop of the 80th Ward; Lovell A. Killpack, and later Bishop of the 28th Ward; Nylen L. Allphin; A. Norton Chaston, and later Bishop of the 27th Ward; J. Merrill Bushnell; Reed Izatt; Vern Brimley, Jr.; Hilton L. Burch; Edwin R. Firmage, and later Bishop of the 79th Ward; Lawson Hamblin. Bishops: Robert C. Patch, 2nd Ward; K. LeRoi Nelson, 5th Ward; Robert H. Slover, 15th Ward; Phil Buchanan, 17th Ward; Hyrum L. Andrus, 27th Ward; Walter Cryer, 28th Ward; Bill J. Pope, 53rd Ward; Clawson Y. Cannon, 67th Ward; Virgil L. James, 69th Ward; and Lyman S. Shreeve, 70th Ward. Jay W. Butler was the Stake Mission President. Stake Relief Society officers were Amy Y. Valentine, President (later Elida Austin); Lyle E. Peterson, lst counselor; Millie F. Cheesman (later AnnaLou Jones) 2nd counselor; and Zetta Lee Hartman (later Betty J. Peterson), Secretary. Robert W. Peterson was Sunday School Superintendent, John C. Swindle (later Russel Booth) was YMMIA Superintendent (Swindle was later High Councilor and Bishop), Amy Owen (later Joan Toronto) YWMIA President. As time went on there were quite a number of changes in the stake family. Terry Bailey became Stake Clerk. Additional High Councilors were Wetzel O. Whitaker, David E. Wright, August W. Jaussi, J. Gayle Yorgason, Donald K. Nelson, Joel C. Barlow, J. Benson Egan, John F. Jones, Floyd E. Breinholt, and Phil Buchanan. Our Stake Patriarch was C. Nello Westover.
- As I was Director of Summer School for 12 years, I had many professional contacts with directors from many other colleges and universities. We had a Rocky Mountain Association which met once a year as follows: Idaho Stake College (C.C. Moore) 1958, University of Colorado (John Little) 1959, University of Nevada (Gerald Holstine) 1960, Arizona State University (Roy Rice) 1961, Colorado State College at Greeley (Don Decker) 1962, University of Utah (Boyer Jarvis) 1963. The organization expanded to include accredited 4-year colleges and universities from the 13 Rocky Mountain, West Coast and Pacific States and Western Canada Provinces. The name was changed to Western Associaiton of Summer School Administrators and was called WASSA. When I returned from presiding over the Norwegian Mission, I became active again in WASSA and also the National Association of Summer Sessions known as NASS. Lyle attended meetings with me most of the time and we enjoyed the conferences. NASS: Key Biscan, Florida, 11/7-9/67; Notre Dame University 11/19-21/68; Philadelphia, 10/14-16/69; Portland, 11/11-13/70; Atlanta Georgia, 11/9-11/71; St. Louis, 11/14-16/72. WASSA: Las Vegas, 10/29-31/67; Denver, 10/9-11/68; Seattle, 10/1-3/69; Portland, 11/11-13/70; San Diego, 12/1-3/71; Sahara-Tahoe, 10/29-31/72; Banff, Canada, 10/7-9/73.
- I was a director in 1970, President Elect in 1971, President 1972, and Immediate Past President in 1973. I conducted the conference at Sahara-Tahoe in 1972. Other officers were Clayton M. Gjerde (California State University at San Diego), Immediate Past President; D.P., President; Richard T. Dankworth (University of Nevada, President Elect; Mary K. Ludwig (University of Southern California, Secretary Treasurer; Dennis Kigin (Arizona State University), one-year Director; Pauline Lyon (University of Washington), two-year Director; and Marc Jantzen (University of Pacific), three-year Director. The chairmen of committees were: Membership - Mary K. Ludwig; Nomination - Clayton M. Gjerde; Annual Meeting - Donald R. Kjarsgaard (Western Washington State College); Program and Local Arrangements - Richard T. Dankworth; and Research - Lloyd O'Conner (California State Univeristy at San Francisco).
- All our meetings were held at the luxurious Sahara-Tahoe, Stateline, Nevada, Hotel. Lyle and I had a large presidential suite with several rooms and luxuries provided free to us by the hotel management. The Honorable Mike O'Callaghan, of the University of Nevada, was the guest speaker at the luncheon and General Session. Other activities included simulated workshop sessions on "WASSA University Revisited", "WASSA in 1980", and other stimulating workshops. We also had an interesting trip to the Ponderosa Pines and had a tour of Ponderosa Ranch and Ranch Home where "Bonanza" is filmed with the Cartwright family.
- The next year Lyle and I attended the WASSA Conference at Banff, Canada. The country was beautiful and the conference was a great success. We enjoyed staying at the Banff Springs Hotel. It is like a castle and the view out our window was of a beautiful mountain valley. We also enjoyed a trip to Lake Louise.
- When BYU changed to the new trimester calendar in 1972-73, I was appointed to coordinate the Spring and Summer terms, which constitute the third semester. However, the summer program was administered the same as the academic year semesters. I no longer administered the budget, employed resident and visiting faculty, and prepared the Summer School catalog. My work in the Summer School program was taken over by the regular University administrative units. I had enjoyed my responsibilities and associations as Director of Summer School for 12 years, but was pleased to see the summer program fully integrated at BYU.
- During the Christmas Holiday season in 1966, Mark Floyd Brienholt proposed to Susan and asked us for permission to marry her. The next night the same thing happened with Philip Grant Brown and Janet. Consequently, wedding plans began for the following June. Susan and Mark were married June 2, 1967, in the Manti Temply (by President Bent Peterson) and Janet and Phil were married a week later on June 9, in the Salt Lake Temple (by A. Theodore Tuttle of the First Council of Seventy). A double wedding reception was held Saturday evening, June 10, in the multi-purpose area of the Smith Family Living Center on the BYU Campus. Myrle Cloward of the BYU Food Service catered and also made arrangements for decorations, flowers, food, etc. It was a lovely affair and the guests came in great numbers from seven o'clock until after ten-thirty. The lines formed all the way down the long corridor eastward to the entrance of the building over half a block away. MacCene Grimmett provided the organ music.
- Not long outdone by his sisters, Erlend met a lovely girl from Boise, Idaho, during the summer of 1968. Their courtship flourished but she had to wait until her missionary returned before she could decide the direction her heart would go. Erlend won and on December 5, 1968, he was married to Colleen Dawn Keith in the Salt Lake Temple. We went to Idaho for a lovely reception at Boise. Grandma Myrle and Grandma Peterson were with us. We held an open house for Erlend and Colleen in Provo in the Womens Cultural Center, December 13. David Wright provided the organ music.
- After Lyle and I attended the National Summer School Conference at Notre Dame in November, 1968, we flew back to Chicago and I continued home. Lyle flew to Columbus, Georgia, where Janet and Philip were living as he was in the U.S. Army. Janet met Lyle at the airport and as they were driving to the house late at night Janet complained that her back had been aching all day. By morning she was in the hospital and our first grandchild was born--Neena Lynne Brown. That was the beginning for us and others soon followed. Janet and Phil: Kari Darlene, February 18, 1970; Philip Michael, July 20, 1973; Susan Helene, February 19, 1976; (Paul Raymond, Steven Evans). Susan and Mark: Mark Bradley, June 21, 1969; Stephen Andrew, February 4, 1971; Charles Thomas, February 21, 1973; Emily Suzette, February 14, 1975; (Aimee; Ken; Rebecca; Elizabeth). Colleen and Erlend: Kristin Dawn, October 23, 1970; Shari Lynn, September 27, 1971; Deborah Ann, February 8, 1974; (DeAnn; Rebecca; Andrew). Chuck and Jim: (Scott; Samuel; Mark; Peter) Colleen and Craig: (Amber; Megan; Jesse). Sonja and Tim: (Tim; Derrik; Desi). We are surely grateful for our wonderful children, their spouses, and our grandchildren. We are blessed.
- Both Mark and Phil were in the Army and each served in the war in South Vietnam. They were platoon leaders and were in the thick of battle for a year. They had many difficult and dangerous experiences. Phil slept just a few feet from a land mine one night and could have been blown to bits. He slept in wet clothing for many nights and waded through swamps and rivers until he had leeches on his body and some of the men developed "Jungle Rot" on their feet. After Mark returned home, he gave several pairs of his olive-colored garments to Dave Hill who was going to Vietnam with these instructions, "Wear them at all times. Some of the time when I was wearing them in battle the bullets were so thick I could feel them going around me." Fortunately, he and Phil were never hit and we are grateful they both returned unharmed from war.
- When Phil and Mark had returned home we borrowed the use of Greg and Elida Austin's lovely canyon home at Bricker Haven for an evening. We had the Browns, the Breinholts, and the Petersons (all family members) to a dinner there. It was a great homecoming occasion. Phil and Mark were comparing some of their war experiences and we learned that evening of the many close calls they had and how close they came to death on many occasions.
- The time they were in Vietnam was difficult for them and their wives and all of us. We prayed and exercised faith every day. Janet and Susan lived with us at different times and also lived together in a new apartment in Orem for six months.
- Lyle and I were honored at the BYU Seventh Stake MIA dinner April 25, 1970, by being presented with a Golden Gleaner and a Master M-Men award.
- In 1971, Dallin H. Oaks, a native of Provo, graduate of BYU, and Professor of Law at the University of Chicago was named the new president of BYU as successor to President Ernest L. Wilkinson whose resignation was announced March 9, and who had served for twenty years as President. At the time of his resignation, it was announced the the BYU would establish a college of law with Dr. Wilkinson assuming a major role in its establishment. President Oaks was just 39 years old at the time of his appointment. In addition to his teaching activities, he was the executive director of the American Bar Foundation, which is the legal research affiliate of the American Bar Association, and was first counselor in the presidency of the Chicago South Stake. He asked me to be his Administrative Assistant as I had been for President Wilkinson the previous two years. I was willing to accept his invitation, but I knew that it likely meant the end to my teaching at the University. I had enjoyed many years teaching in the College of Business as Professor of Business Education and had been active in the following professional organizations: Delta Pi Epsilon (Alpha Omega Chapter) - an honorary society for business educators; Phi Delta Kapa - an honorary society for secondary and higher educators; Beta Gamma Sigma (Beta Chapter) - a scholastic society for business men and business educators; National Education Association; Utah Education Association; National Business Education Association; Utah Business Education (President 1963-64); National Association of Summer Sessions (NASS); and the Western Association of Summer Session Administrators (WASSA - President 1971-72).
- On February 9, 1972, Lyle and I attended the dedication of the new Provo Temple and were invited to the Celestial Room for the service at which President Harold B. Lee gave the dedicatory prayer. We participated in the "Hosannah Shout." (We had also attended the groundbreaking service for the Temple, September 15, 1969, and I was given a golden colored shovel and participated in the groundbreaking.) We had visited every temple in the Church except the one in New Zealand. The smallest temple in use was the one at Laie, Hawaii. Its landscaping is impressive and we enjoyed the beauty of it all and the special spirit in the Temple. We have choice memories from each temple.
- In May, 1972, I was called to be a Regional Representative of the Council of the Twelve and a Mission Representative of the Council of the Twelve and the First Council of Seventy with assignment to Norway. On Sunday, May 25, I was set apart by Elder Boyd K. Packer in his office in the Church Office Building in Salt Lake City. In the blessing, Elder Packer promised me health, language facility, travel without undue weariness, success in my labors, and the return to my Heavenly Father in due time with all my family. I soon had the St. George Region also added to my assignment.
- In August, 1972, we had a special stake conference in the BYU 7th Stake with President Spencer W. Kimball as the presiding general authority. It was his first conference assignment in a year, as he had had open heart surgery. Following the special interviews, President Paul R. Cheesman, my first counselor, was called to be the stake president. He selected Gregory E. Austin, my second counselor, as the first counselor and Bill J. Pope, Bishop of the BYU 53rd Ward, as his second counselor. We held the general conference meeting in the DeJong Concert Hall of the Harris Fine Arts Building.
- In November, Lyle and I went to Zurich, Switzerland, to assist Elder Thoedore Tuttle with a Mission Presidents' Seminar. Regional Representative Orville C. Gunther and his wife from American Fork were also present. The following mission presidents and their wives attended the seminar: Neil D. Schaerrer, Austria; Grant R. Ipsen, Denmark; Robert G. Wade, Finland; Rudolph K. Poecker, German Central; Eugene D. Bryson, Germany North; M. Blaine Peterson, Germany South; James C. Ellsworth, Germany West; Gosta Berling, Norway; L. Roland Folkerson, Sweden; and Edwin Q. Cannon, Jr., Switzerland. President and Sister Immo Luschin Von Ebenruth of the Swiss Temple were present for the first day of the seminar. We stayed at the Dolder Grand Hotel in Zurich. As President Tuttle was fogged in at London, Elder Gunther and I had to conduct the seminar Sunday evening and Monday morning and make the presentations concerning missionary work and the new missionary discussions. On Wednesday, we went by chartered bus to the Swiss Temple for a special endowment session. Following the activities in Switzerland, we flew to Norway with President and Sister Berling. It was exciting to be back in Norway again after six years. A large special meeting was held in the Oslo chapel for us. Lyle and I spoke and then enjoyed a reception. The saints had come from far and near to welcome us. We held an all-day meeting the following day with the mission leaders (missionaries) from all over Norway. Saturday and Sunday we attended and spoke at District Conference in Bergen. We were pleased to see the Bergen Chapel completed. The last time we had been in Bergen we worked one day placing ceiling tile in the chapel. (While we were in Oslo before going to Bergen, President Berling took us to Drammen to see the beautiful new chapel there. I had purchased the land for it while in Norway as Mission President, but the construction had not begun when we were there at that time. It is surely a fine chapel situated in a beautiful residential area on a main highway where all can see it.) We enjoyed our first return visit to Norway and looked forward to additional visits to work with the members and the missionaries in my new calling as Regional and Mission Representative.
- We (Mother, Lyle, Colleen, Sonja, and I) went to Mesa for Thanksgiving (November 23-26, 1972) to be with Mark and Susan and famiy. Mark was teaching Seminary and was the principal at a junior high school seminary in Mesa. We enjoyed visiting with them and having a delicious Thanksgiving dinner. However, Mother became ill while there. When we returned home we took her to the Utah Valley Hospital where Dr. W. G. Dixon operated on her and removed her gall bladder.
- April 8-15 I went to Norway and held regional meetings the 10th to 13th in the four districts of Oslo, Drammen, Trondheim, and Bergen. General Board members accompanied me on the trip: Kenneth H. Beesley, Sunday School; Jean Green and McKay Phippen, Aaronic Priesthood MIA; Bruce M. Lake, Melchizedek Priesthood MIA; and their spouses. I had overlooked taking my passport with me and had to stay over one night in New York while Lyle sent it to me by the pilot of a United Airline plane. We had very good meetings with the members and also missionary meetings during our stay in Norway. I introduced the new missionary discussions which are family and Book of Mormon oriented. We introduced the new Aaronic Priesthood and Melchizedek Priesthood MIA programs to the members.
- In May, 1973, I entered the Utah Valley Hospital and had surgery for a ruptured appendix. Dr. Mark Fullmer was the surgeon. The operation was a success and I got along well until the day I was to be released. We discovered an abscess and the incision had to be opened and drained. I was finally released May 20, but the abscess didn't heal and I went about my daily activities with a bandage on my operation all the time until finally (November 12) I went back in the hospital for repair surgery. Dr. Fullmer found that I was allergic to the black silk thread which had been used inside me. Each stitch was festered. He removed the silk stitches and then sewed me together with steel wire. I was released from the hospital in five days.
- In the meantime, Lyle and I had been to St. George for interim and also regional meetings. The 5 stake presidents were: Kenneth R. Metcalf (mortician) - St. George Stake; T LaVoy Esplin (Superintendent of Washington County Schools) - St. George East Stake; Dr. J. Ballard Washburn (Medical Doctor in Page, Arizona - Kanab Stake; Wesley A. Holt (merchant) - Uvada (later Enterprise) Stake; and C. Jack Lemmon (Mayor of Hurricane) - Zion Park (later Hurricane) Stake. At our August 25 regiional meeting we had the following general board members with us: Barbara Smith (soon to become the General President of the Relief Society to replace Belle S. Spafford) and Clara L. Boren - Relief Society; Erma A. Kunzler, Primary. We stayed at the Coral Hills Motel and held the meetings at the St. George East Stake Chapel, across the street east from the St. George Temple. During September we had a visit of a number of Norwegian saints, including Arne and Elsie Bakken, Helge and Bergliot Bjerke Mangshoel, Charles and Alfhild Morteng, Otto Gebbhart (and wife and small son), and others.
- October 2 to 6 Sonja was in the Utah Valley Hospital for an appendectomy. I had recognized the symptoms from my experience and had her taken care of before the appendix ruptured. She got along very well and hardly has a scar to show for her operation.
- October 13, Lyle and I flew to New York, Amsterdam, and Oslo. We arrived before noon in Oslo on Sunday and attended both Sacrament meetings (Oslo I and Oslo II Branches) and spoke at both of them. We held missionary and regional meetings in Drammen, Oslo, Trondheim and Bergen. General board members with us were: Florence R. Lane (2nd counselor in the General Primary Presidency of the Church) - Primary; and Edythe Watson - Relief Society. On our return trip we stopped at the airport in Denver and visited with Janet, Phil, Neena, Kari and Michael as they were living in Greeley, Colorado, where Philip is teaching child development at the university and is in charge of the preschool program.
- Thursday, November 2, 1973, we went to the Salt Lake Temple and witnessed the marriage of Dolores and Jimmy Brown. We had a wedding luncheon at the Beau Brummel Cafe and a wedding reception in the evening at the Lion House. Among the visitors were LeGrand Richards, A. Theodore Tuttle, Bishop Victor L. Brown, S. Dilworth Young, Temple President Edmunds, who had performed the marriage and is Jimmy's former mission president. It was a wonderful day!
- January 13, 1974, I flew to Norway for an interim visit. Sister Vassbund accompanied me on the trip as she had been in Utah for the marriage of her daughter, Turid. I held missionary meetings and meetings with the Mission Presidency and other leaders in the church in Norway. President Berling and I flew to Stockholm on the 16th to hold an all-day planning meeting on the 17th for the area general conference of the church to be held in Stockholm in August. Elder Thomas Fyans, head of the Church's Internal Communications (and soon to be called as a general authority) was in charge of arrangements. Mission presidents and regional representatives for the four northern countries and others were present for the meeting. We stayed at the Holiday Inn at Massen and also inspected the convention center where the meetings were to be held in August. I returned to Norway with President Berling for more meetings before returning home.
- February 9-10, Lyle and I went with Ardith Kapp, counselor in the Young Women's Presidency for the Church, and Ed Pinegar of the General Board of the Sunday School to St. George and held regional meetings there. Ed had a brand new Cadillac which we enjoyed very much. We stayed at the Coral Hills Motel and dined at the "Homespun" German Restaurant at Leeds. The meetings were excellent and 80 percent of the leaders in the St. George Region were in attendance.
- On March 4, 1974, I was elected prestident of the Board of Directors of the BYU Employees Federal Credit Union. I had served previously as president before going to Norway in 1963. This time I served for one year and did not run for re-election to the board as I had served for approximately six years this time and several years earlier. Kiefer B. Sauls, who served as Vice President was elected to succeed me in 1975.
- On Thursday, March 7, I drove to Salt Lake City and picked up Elder Delbert L. Stapley and we flew by Air West to Page, Arizona, for the purpose of reorganizing the Kanab Stake and holding stake conferences. We were met at the airport by President Ballard Washburn, who was the president of the Kanab Stake. We checked in at the Empire House Motel and were taken to President Washburn's home to lunch. We then went to the chapel and held a meeting with priesthood leaders. I was called upon to be the first speaker. Then Elder Stapley spoke and we held personal interviews with each person, many of whom are Indians. The next day we drove to Kanab, held a meeting with priesthood leaders there, and interviewed each one. By Saturday we had selected the new stake leaders as follows: Kanab Utah Take - Valton E. Jackson, President (He had been 2nd Counselor); Howard Roberts, M.D., 1st Counselor; Jack Maxwell, 2nd Counselor; and Forace Green, Executive Secretary. We held a leadership meeting from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. in Kanab and then held a general session of stake conference Sunday morning. (I spoke at both meetings.) There was a very large attendance and the new leaders were well received and sustained. We then went to Page where we held a conference and organized the new Page Arizona Stake with the following leaders: J. Ballard Washburn, president; Lous Singer (Lamanite), 1st Counselor; W. LaVon Gifford (dentist) 2nd Counselor; Leo Larson and William Numkena (Hopi Indian) as patriarchs. Several Indians were sustained as High Counselors and ward and branch leaders. After the meeting at which I also spoke, I assisted in setting apart the Stake Presidency and then took a counselor with me and set apart other leaders while Elder Stapley did likewise. (We had followed the same procedure in Kanab.) After church we went to President Washburn's home for an evening meal and a visit with his family and the new stake officers. The following morning we toured the new Salt River Navajo Power Plant with Dean Johnson, LDS Superintendent, as our guide. When completed, it will produce as much power as all the plants in Utah combined. We flew back to Salt Lake City in the afternoon. I had enjoyed the companionship of Elder Stapley for five days and felt good about the accomplishments that had been made.
- Lyle, Sonja, and I drove to St. George Friday, March 15, to participate in the dedication of the newly expanded and completed Visitors Center at the St. George Temple. On Saturday morning we visited the Jacob Hamblin home in Santa Clara and the Brigham Young home in St. George. We held a meeting at the Stake Center with Elder Mark E. Petersen and the stake presidencies. We then participated in an open-air meeting on the east side of the temple. I had the privilege of speaking at the meeting. Elder Mark E. Petersen gave the principal address and the dedicatory prayer. There were approximately 400 persons present and we renewed acquaintance with President and Sister Glenn E. Snow (former Dixie College President), Andrew and Myrle McArthur (our former bishop), Truman and Laura Lytle Bowler, and many others we had not seen for years.
- The following day I left for Norway and arrived there at noon Monday, March 18. I held many meetings with mission leaders including the mission presidency, committee members for the area conference to be held in Stockholm in August, leaders of the Sunday School (Asmund Herness) and Aaronic Priesthood and Young Women (Osvald and Kari Bjareng) and others. We held meetings with missionaries and regional meetings with the Norwegian mission leaders in Drammen, Oslo, Trondheim and Bergen. After the meetings in Bergen I went to dinner with Julius Johansen. He picked me up at the Grand Hotel Sunday morning and took me to the airport. I flew to Copenhagen and changed planes. When we were ready to leave Copenhagen, a leak was discovered in one of the jet fuel lines which delayed us for a couple of hours. I flew to Montreal and Chicago. I changed planes in Chicago and flew to Denver where Janet, Phil and the children met me at 11:00 p.m. and took me to Greeley. I brought Neena and Kari each a Norwegian Bunad dress and Michael a Norwegian sweater. The following day I was taken to the school where Phil teaches at the University of Northern Colorado and had a good visit with the family. They took me to the airport in Denver and I flew to Salt Lake City where Lyle, Colleen and Sonja met me.
- April 11, Lyle took me to the University Medical Center where Dr. Mary Dahl treated my left eye with 109 shorts of Xenon beam. (I returned April 18 for 96 more shots.) The purpose of the shots was experimental (a nation-wide study) to prevent hemorrhaging of the small blood vessels in the eye.
- May 18-19 Lyle and I were in St. George for stake conference of the St. George Stake. We met in the tabernacle and I had the privilege of speaking at the general session, following which we held an interim meeting with the stake presidencies of the stakes in the St. George Region. June 14, we (Lyle, Sonja, Mother and I) went to Kanab and held a regional meeting the following day. We stayed at the lovely Four Seasons Motel. After the meetings were over on Saturday we drove to Mesa to visit Susan, Mark and children. A little while before we came to Flagstaff on the way to Mesa, Lyle was driving and suddenly a great gust of wind arose and blew red dirt across the highway completely engulfing and blinding us. A car with lights on came within a few inches of hitting us head on. Lyle stopped the car and fortunately no other cars were near us or we likely would have had a serious accident. We were grateful our lives were spared. When we arrived at Mesa it was 115 degrees. Susan and the boys were sitting on their new front lawn waiting for us. We were happy to see them and also very pleased with their new house they had built. We went to church with them Sunday and I was called upon to speak in Sacrament meeting. Everyone surely loves Sue and Mark. We went to visit Waldo and June Barton LeSuer. They have surely been good to Sue and Mark. We drove home on Tuesday--650 miles--after having enjoyed a good visit in Mesa.
- Sue and Mark and their family came to Utah for the 4th of July. Erlend and I put our chairs along the parade route at 5:00 a.m. so the family could enjoy the parade (as we usually do). After the parade everyone went to our place for a luncheon. Wayne and Virginia and their family, Rhoda and Reed, Don Reed, Jay and Catherine and family, Elden and Alice and family all joined with us. We used the back lawn and the garage, which I had cleared out and scrubbed and placed Persian carpets on the floor, for our dining facilities. Everyone seemed to haave a good time. For July 6 and 7, many of us went to Cheesman's cabin in Wildwood for Saturday and Sunday (Mark, Sue, Brad, Steve, Chuck, Sonja, Colleen, Craig, Sue Brown, Joan Brown, Jimmy and Dolores, Lyle and I). There were 14 of us for five beds, but lots of room in the cabin and screened porch. We had army cots and plenty of sleeping bags and bedding. Sunday we all attended church services in the open air "Church in the Wildwood". There were 100 present.
- On July 19, Lyle, Colleen, Sonja and I left in our newly purchased 1974 Toyota for a trip to Greeley, Colorado to visit Janet, Phil, Neena, Kari and Michael. It was a pleasant drive and we enjoyed the new car--especially its 32 miles to a gallon. The Browns have a nice apartment and we enjoyed staying with them--Church, swimming, picture show, sightseeing, and visiting. We left the Toyota in Greeley and drove home with Janet and the children in their new Buick Station Wagon. Phil drove the Toyota to Utah when his summer school ended.
- On Tuesday, August 13, 1974, Lyle and I left to attend the first Nordic Area Conference in Stockholm. When we got on the United plane in Salt Lake City we were pleased to see President and Sister Spencer W. Kimball on the plane. We visited enroute to New York. Lyle and I went from New York on KLM via Amsterdam and arrived in Stockholm the next day at noon. We were met at the airport and taken to the Holiday Inn Hotel at the new convention center where the conference was held. We went sightseeing with the general authorities on Thursday and had some very good visits. On Friday we went early to the cultural evening program and saw many of our saints from Norway. It was a great reunion and a tremendous program was held with some 400 participants from the four countries in their native costumes. the climax of the evening was the 400 performers singing in Norwegian the beautiful Edvard Grieg's "Landkjenning," with Ramm Arvesether conducting and Stein and Terje Pedersen as accompanists. A standing applauding ovation was given such that the entire number was repeated. It united the saints in spirit as one people. We were thrilled with the conference. President Kimball was inspired and gave five major talks during the various conference sessions. I had the privilege of speaking in Norwegian at first general conference session. The saints were challenged to live the gospel more completely and to share their testimonies and be missionaries in bringing the gospel to others. The saints will never be the same again after that conference. We visited with Nels Ova Andersen from Odense, Denmark, and his wife. He had been one of our missionaries in Norway. We flew back via Bergen, Norway, Monday in company with Elder and sister James A. Foust, Bishop Vaughn Featherstone, Jay Todd, and Brother and Sister Phileon Robinson. The plane damaged a landing gear when we arrived at the Bergen airport and we were detained three hours while repairs were made, but that give us a good opportunity to visit. We arrived in New York after our plane had departed, but we were able to get another flight (all within 45 minutes) and arrived iin Salt Lake City at 9:20 where we were met by several of our children. We went home via Chuck and Jim's house in Granger.
- On August 30, we went for our annual Labor Day outing to Camp Kiessel. (Mother, Lyle, Janet, Phil, Neena, Kari, Michael, Colleen, Craig, Sonja, Sonja's friend Pam, Elden, Alice, and Gilbert. The next day we were joined by Rhoda, Don, Wayne, Virginia, Drew, Chris, Russell, Kari, Kay, Nedra, Brent, Brandon, Joan Brown, Dolores, and Jim.) We had the usual good time together--volleyball, hiking, swimming, fishing, canoeing, rook, eating, and holding our own church service on Sunday morning.
- Saturday, October 13, I went to Norway to tour the mission and to hold missionary and regional meetings in the four districts. After an afternoon and night in Oslo I flew to Tromso to meet President Berling. I was met at the Tromso airport by President Berling and Brother Johansen and taken to one of the saints' homes to participate in a meeting and to speak. President Berling and I then flew to Bodo and were met by Brother Thommasen and taken to his home to enjoy a delicious salmon dinner. He is the principal of the school, Sjommans skole, in Bodo. In the evening we held a meeting in a beautiful rented hall with members and investigators. A bahaii couple were there and asked many questions. I spoke, President Berling spoke, then we had a question-answer period. The Bahaii lady was from Iran and was very much interested to learn I had lived there for three years. We had a good visit and a good meeting. President Berling and I flew from Bodo at 7:00 a.m. the next day to Trondheim where we held an all-day meeting with the missionaries and our first regional meeting of this series with the members. All went very well and we also had the privilege of attending a baptismal service. We then flew to Oslo at midnight. Early the next morning we drove to Drammen and held an all-day meeting with the missionaries there. We had a very good regional meeting and baptismal service in the evening at Drammen. The next day we held an all-day meeting with missionaries at the Hekkveien chapel in Oslo. There I saw the gift of tongues with a new Elder who had been in Norway one week. He was inspired and spoke the Norwegian language far beyond his natural ability--fluently, perfectly, and with an excellent vocabulary. The mission president commented on how perfect the elder's language was and how inspiring his testimony was. We held a very successful regional meeting in the evening. The next day we flew to Bergen at 7:00 a.m. and held missionary and regional meetings there. After the meeting I participated in an ordination in the Priesthood at which a son (about 20 years of age) ordained his father to the Melchizedek Priesthood and the office of Elder. It was the first I had been present for such an occasion. The father was being called to serve in the branch presidency in Stavanger. I reflected on the good spirit in the mission since the area conference in Stockholm. The saints are willing and anxious to do member-missionary work. In Porsgrunn the 71 members go branch tracting with the missionaries and have 92 investigators. When I arrived at the Bergen airport the next morning, I learned my flight to New York had been cancelled. I flew to Copenhagen and after a three-hour delay flew on a 747 jet to New York. When we arrived at New York at 8:00 p.m. all the flights to the west had departed. SAS put me up at the International Hotel at the airport and I flew the next day to Denver for a visit with Phil, Janet, and family and then on to Salt Lake City and home. I had enjoyed a vigorous trip and had held meetings with every missionary in Norway this time as well as the regional meetings. It had been another great week in the mission field.
- Sunday, October 17, 1974, was a special day in the Provo Temple with President Spencer W. Kimball, Presient Marion G. Romney, President Harold Glen Clark, and others we shall never forget.
- Saturday and Sunday, November 16 and 17, Lyle, Colleen, Sonja and I drive to St. George in our new Galaxie 500 for an interim meeting with the three stake presidencies. We enjoyed the trip and the automobile did nearly 18 miles to a gallon. The meeting was excellent and all purposes were achieved.
- Wednesday-Sunday, November 27-December 1, Lyle, Sonja, Colleen and I drove to Mesa, (with stop over night in Page) to have Thanksgiving dinner with Susan, Mark and the boys. We had a wonderful visit and a delicious Thanksgiving dinner (on Friday). Rhoda and Reed joined us for dinner and enjoyed a good visit. Sonja stayed in Mesa with Susan and Mark until Christmas time as we wanted her to get away from her associates at Farrer Jr. High School. Mother and all our children and families were with us for Christmas Day. Lyle and I went by Western Airlines to Phoenix, December 26, as a member of the official BYU party for the Fiesta Bowl game and activities, as our football team had won the Western Athletic Conference and were invited to the Fiesta Bowl at Arizona State University to play Oklahoma State. We stayed in the beautiful Scottsdale Hilton Hotel. Friday morning we attended a brunch sponsored by Sunkist for the teams, coaches, and administrative people. It was fabulous. Coach LaVell Edwards did a good job in speaking and introducing our team members who were presented with personalized plaques. In the afternoon we sat in the reviewing stand and watched an interesting Fiesta parade for a couple of hours. President and Sister Spencer W. Kimball were in the parade. Lyle and the other ladies in the reviewing stand were given beautiful bouquets. In the evening we attended a BYU Alumni banquet at the Union Building. Lyle and I sat by Elder and Sister Howard Hunter and President Wilkinson at the head table. More than 1500 persons were present and two overflow rooms were also filled. The speakers were Coach Edwards, President Oaks, and President Kimball. It was a very interesting occasion. On Saturday Susan and Mark joined us for the Fiesta Bowl football game. It was a beautiful afternoon and we enjoyed the Arizona sunshine. Our team began very well and would very likely have won the football game, but in the second quarter the worst disaster that could happen did--our star quarterback, Gary Sheide, was injured with a shoulder separation and could not play anymore. Gary Mills, our inexperienced quarterback, played a good game but without Shiede our team couldn't make it. Oklahoma State won the game with a score of 16-6. Lyle and I went home with Susan and Mark for a visit and a dinner. They and their children took us back to the hotel to catch the bus to the airport. We flew home with the football team on a chartered plane. Coach Edwards gave me a beautiful digital "Quartzmatic" wrist watch with "Fiesta Bowl 1974" inscribed on it. Lyle was given a necklace with a Fiesta Bowl medallion on it.
- January 4-5, 1975 Lyle and I accompanied Elder and Sister Gordon B. Hinckley, in thier new LTD, to St. George to reorganize the stake presidency in the St. George East Stake. During the course of our interviews with the stake leaders, Elder Hinckley was impressed with Truman Bowler, a member of the High Council. After the interviews we held a prayer and then went to dinner and our evening leadership meeting. We then had President Esplin, who was to be released as stake president, meet with us and tell us about three or four of the persons we felt good about, but Elder Hinckley felt that the Lord wanted Truman Bowler to be the new stake president. President Esplin said, "Truman is my brother-in-law and therefore, I didn't push him since we are married to sisters and it would look like a family situation." Elder Hinckley replied, "If the Lord wants him to be stake president, we cannot let the fact that you are married to sisters interfere. You are both better men because of your wives." We then knelt in prayer with Elder Hinckley as mouth and told Heavenly Father of our decision and asked if it were also his decision. When we arose we all felt the spirit indicate that our choice was the correct one. President Esplin was not able to locate Truman until 11:00 p.m. When Truman and his wife, Laura (both of whom had been my outstanding students in business classes when I taught at Dixie College), came to our motel room, Elder Hinckley told them of the decision to call Truman to be stake president. He said, "Are you sure? I have never been a bishop." Elder Hinckley responded, "Neither had I when I was called to be a stake president. You have been in two bishoprics; that is good." Then tears came to Truman's eyes and he said, "I knew I was going to be called to be stake president." Elder Hinckley said, "How long have you known?" He said, "About a month; when President Esplin received the letter indicating he would be released at the next stake conference." Laura wept and said, "When Truman told me about it I said, 'If the call comes, we'll know where it comes from.'" Then Elder Hinckley said, "Have you thought about your counselors?" Truman said, "Yes, I have them both selected." He said, "For the past couple of weeks I have had a very strong feeling that Brother Milne and Brother Webb would be working with me." We then discussed the needs of the stake and the kind of counselors he should have. Elder Hinckley told him to go home and pray about it and call at 7:00 a.m. with the answer. By 4:00 a.m. Truman had the confirmation and was about to call Elder Hinckley, but refrained until 7:00 a.m. The answer was the same. We interviewed the two bretheren and then met with the high council for their sustaining vote before the general session at which the change was made in presidencies. The new stake presidency was well reeived and turned out to be an excellent presidency. We enjoyed the conference and our association with Elder and Sister Hinckley very much.
- January 25 and 26 Lyle and I spent in Enterprise where I represented the general authorities at the Enterprise stake conference. We held five meetings and I spoke at each of them. We were taken to Panca, Nevada, by President Swallow where we stayed over night in a beautiful mobile home with all the luxuries one could imagine. President Swallow and his wife are both pharmacists and have a beautiful home and lots of property. They have a choice family we enjoyed visiting with and sharing a late snack; their 14-year-old son had baked a cake for us. (The mobile home belongs to President Swallow's mother who was away. It is very large and has a front room, kitchen, study, two bdrooms and two bathrooms.) We really enjoyed all of our experiences related to the conference. Lyle and I spoke at a special early morning meeting Sunday on "Eternal Values" with the youth of the stake. On the way home we stopped at Ephraim and visited with Rhoda, Reed and mother. Mother was ill and we administered to her.
- February 7 and 8, 1975 we went to St. George where I conducted another regional meeting. I spoke at the opening general session and at the departmental meeting for the AP and YW. Our theme was "Lengthening Our Stride," taken from the message given by President Kimball at our October seminar for regional representatives. We had good meetings. President Harold Bowler and the new St. George East Stake presidency hosted us. After the meeting we drove to Bloomington and had lunch with Greg and Elida Austin. We then drove to Cedar City where I attended an area missionary priesthood meeting. President Oscar McConkie, President of the Arizona Tempe Mission, was the first speaker. I was the second speaker, and Regional Representative Herbert Spencer, M.D., from Provo, was the concluding speaker. Lyle, Colleen, Sonja and I stayed over night in Cedar City and returned home via Ephraim Sunday. We were glad Mother is much better and will soon be going home.
- March 17-23, I took the Key Limousine to the Salt Lake Airport and flew to New York, Amsterdam, and Oslo. I was met at the airport by President Berling and was soon in meetings. I met with the mission presidency and the mission leaders for the Sunday School (Asmund Haerness), the Aaronic Priesthood (Stein Erik Jensen and Stein Dalby), the Young Woman (Karin Bjareng, Aase Holth) to go over the program and materials for the regional meetings. All was in readiness and all materials, films, and filmstrips were in Norwegian and ready for use at the meetings. We held meetings in Drammen Wednesday, Oslo Thursday, Trondheim Friday, and Bergen Saturday. The meetings were all well attended and very successful. While I was in Oslo, Gerd Weirholt took me to the hospital to visit her husband Ivar who was suffering from terminal cancer and wanted me to give him a blessing. I visited with him and then gave him a blessing that he would not have to continue suffering. I sealed him up to the Lord that the Lord's will be done. (I later received a telegram from Gerd that he passed away Saturday, April 5, at 2:00 a.m.) On Sunday morning I flew with President Berling and Brother Haerness to Stavanger where they attended Sunday meetings. I continued to Copenhagen, Montreal, Chicago, and Salt Lake City where I arrived at 8:25 p.m. Once again it was good to be home.
- Wednesday, April 25, to Monday, May 5, Lyle flew to Hawaii on a familiarization trip for Deseret Travel. Her trip was enjoyable and she was able to attend church services in Honolulu on Sunday and bear her testimony in the sacrament meeting. She returned in time for us to leave for a cruise to Mexico. She and Colleen, Sonja and I left Provo at 3:00 p.m. on May 7 and drive as far as Las Vegas where we stayed overnight before continuing on to Palmdale. (Colleen was driving our new Galaxie 500 and the rear right tire blew just before we got to St. George. A highway patrolman pulled up behind us immediately and changed the tire for us as fast as I could jack up the car and get the spare tire out. The safety lock on Colleen's seat belt was broken and he helped her release it. We continued to St. George and the safety lock fastened again and locked Colleen into her seat. I couldn't get it unlocked until I had to break the lock. We tried to get a new tire for the car in St. George, but it was too late in the evening. We got a new one in Las Vegas the next morning for one-half price--$20, as it was guaranteed for 40,000 miles.) We arrived in Palmdale at 3:30 p.m. and had a good visit with Grandma Myrle, Bea, Barbara and family, Linda and husband and family and Steve and wife and family. We celebrated Linda's and my birthdays. We stayed with Barbara at her lovely new home. Friday we continued the visit in Palmdale and Saturday morning we drove to Wilmington near Long Beach where we boarded the "Fairsea" for a Sitmar cruise to Mexico. The ship was luxurious with a crew capacity of 480 and a passenger capacity of 850. We were in Room 173 on the Ocean Deck. Harry James and his big band (16 players plus a vocalist) were on board to help entertain us. He had Phil Harris as a guest. There were many entertainers on the 7-day cruise.
- We enjoyed the delicious meals and the excellent service on the ship. The girls enjoyed the three outdoor swimming pools and the physical therapy room. We also enjoyed docking and going on land at Puerto Vallarta, Mazatland, and Baha. Our favorite was Mazatland where we did some shopping and went to a beautiful white sand beach to swim. While we were on the beach a young Mexican boy sold Lyle two lovely rings--an Alexandrite and a Topaz. He wanted $20 for each of them, but finally sold both of them for $18. He said business hadn't been good that day and he wanted to make a sale. I said "You can't make any profit on them for that price." He said, "My family makes them so we'll still make a little profit." He was a charming boy and spoke good English.
- The cruise was wonderful and we hope to go again. The service, entertainment, including daily movies, the warm weather, the sailing, and everything on the cruise was wonderful (except the last evening when the weather was rough and we missed our final dinner on the ship). We docked at 7:00 a.m. on Saturday morning and drove our automobile as far as St. George where we stayed over night in the beautiful "Four Seasons" Motel. We drove home and found all well at home, Sunday, May 18.
- May 31 we went to St. George for Stake Conference in the St. George Utah East Stake. I was pleased with the new stake presidency and had a good meeting with them. We then held a two-hour meeting at which I spoke and showed the film "Cipher in the Snow" and emphasized the importance of a human soul. We then ate and held a two-hour leadership meeting in the evening. The theme was "Strengthening the Aaronic and Melchizedek Priesthood Quorums." A talk was given by President Webb, by a Deacons Quorum President, and by an Elders Quorum President. I found myself with 1 1/2 hours left to speak. I used my cassette and played a brief extract from regional meeting talks by Bruck McConkie on "I'm Only an Elder"; an interview by Bishop Featherstone with a Teachers Quorum Prsident and his senior home teaching companion, President Nathan Eldon Tanner. We also showed a l0-minute filmstrip entitled "Strengthening the Priesthood" and I spoke the rest of the time. We held a general session in Washington beginning at 9:30 Sunday morning. President Bowler, Lyle, and I were the first three speakers; then we left with President Milne conducting and went to St. George for the general session there which was being conducted by President Webb. We entered the conference at 11:00 and after the rest song we three were the concluding speakers. The primary children sang in both conference sessions and both chapels were filled to capacity. Lyle, Sonja, Melissa Hickman, and I joined with Dan C. Watson as dinner guests at President and Sister Bowler's home. In the afternoon I conducted an interim meeting with the stake presidencies in the St. George Region held in the high council room of the tabernacle. We arrived in Provo shortly after 9:00 p.m.
- August 9, 1975 Lyle and I went on our last official trip to Norway since regional representatives were soon to be reassigned to labor with stakes in the USA and Canada only. General Authorities were to be stationed in various parts of the world to live and oversee all church work in the missions. We flew from SLC to NY in 4 hours and from NY to Bergen in 6 1/2 hours. (This was only 10 1/2 hours by air. In 1933 when I went to Norway as a missionary, I traveled 14 days and nights to get to Oslo by train and ship--what a difference!) We had a week filled with the usual busy schedule of meetings and activities, although we were with a new mission president and his wife this time--President and Sister John F. Langeland. We also took the opportunity this time to take a trip inland. We were met at the Bergen Airport by Brother and Sister Julius Johansen and taken to their daughter and son-in-law's beautiful new home near the airport for a tasty breakfast. We then went to the chapel at Fantoft where I spoke at Sacrament meeting. We drove into the country where we took a ferry boat at 5:00 p.m. from Gudvangen to Aurland. We met the Johansen daughter and her twin babies and other members of Sister Johansen's family. She was born and reared in Aurland and the family home is still occupied by her parents. (However, her parents were not at home as her father has been in the hospital, he and his wife were at a rest home for the time being.) The next morning we arose, at the inn where we had slept, and went for a drive to the top of the mountains. We were high up where we had a breath-taking view and where Julius goes skiing in the winter. We took a picture of Lyle with a snowball in one hand and a bouquet of beautiful wild flowers in the other. In the afternoon we took the ferry from Aurland back to Stalheim where we spent some time seeing the gorgeous sights and the old Norwegian village. We continued on to Bergen via Hardanger Fjord and arrived back at the Norge Hotel at 11:00 p.m. What a wonderful trip we had with the Johansens and what glorious scenery we had seen! The roads were narrow and had many tunnels. Brother Johansen was a fast driver and I did more praying than usual on that trip!
- August 12 we flew to Oslo and were met by President and Sister Langeland. We stayed at the KNA Hotel but had a wonderful dinner at the mission home. Elder Joseph L. Wirthlin, Assistant to the Council of the Twelve, and his wife and two daughters were also present. Elder Didier (soon to be called as a General Authority) joined us for the dinner. After dinner I met with the mission presidency and other leaders to go over the plans for our regional meetings.
- August 14-16 we had dinner with President Stein and Gulloug Pedersen, their family, and Geird Weirholt. We held regional meetings in Porsgrun for Drammen District, in Oslo, Trondheim, and Bergen. We had good attendance and excellent meetings.
- It was difficult to leave Norway and the members this time as it would be my last visit as regional representative. I was soon to have my assignment changed and had thoroughly enjoyed my labors in Norway. Few missionaries ever had the opportunity to return to their missions as mission president and then later as regional representative of the twelve. I had been fortunate and greatly blessed. I left Norway in good hands with President and Sister Langeland in charge--they are the greatest and will be excellent leaders.
- August 17 Lyle and I flew from Bergen to Copenhagen and changed planes for Chicago and then on to Denver where Janet, Phil, Neena, Kari, and Michale met us at the airport. They took us to Greeley where we stayed over night with them. We enjoyed the visit in Greeley and saw the new house they were soon to purchase. The 18th they took us back to Denver and we flew to Salt Lake City where we were met at the airport by Chuck, Jim, Colleen, Craig, and Sonja. We were happy to find all well with them and at home. "Borte er god, men hjemme er best."
- August 22-24 Lyle, Colleen, Sonja, Susan, Bradley, Steven, Charles Thomas (Chuckie), Emily and I drove to St. George and stayed over night at the Coral Hills Motel. Saturday morning I conducted the St. George regional meeting in the stake center across from the temple. The meeting was very successful and well attended. The stakes in the St. George Region are among the very best in the entire church!
- After the meeting on Saturday, we drove through Zion Canyon, where we stopped for lunch, and on to Bryce Canyon for the night. The children especially enjoyed going through the tunnels on the Mt. Carmel highway. We went for a hike down the trails at Bryce Canyon. There was a squirrel under our deluxe cabin and every time little Chuckie was outside he would go to the hole and say, "Come out Wabbit." He was so cute. On Sunday we attended church services at the Bryce Canyon Lodge and then drove to Provo. We had greatly enjoyed the weekend and having Susan and her family with us.
- August 30 we went to Camp Kiesel with Elden and Alice, Mother, and many relatives for a family reunion over the Labor Day weekend. We had fun playing volleyball, hiking, boating, etc. We held our own church service on Sunday morning. I conducted the meeting and bore my testimony, followed by Wayne, Elden, Lyle, alice, Susan and Tammy's husband Craig. Susan paid tribute to Mother and had everyone crying. On Monday Susan left with her car and children along with Phil, Janet, and family for Greeley, Colorado. (From there she flew to New York and was with Mark for graduation exercises at the Chaplain school. She and Mark drove their new car to Colorado.) We all returned home in the afternoon. Since Elden is moving to Salt Lake Council of the Boy Scouts of America, this was our last reunion at Camp Kiesel. It has been a privilege to meet there each Labor Day weekend for the past four years. The accommodations are excellent and the facilities are just right for a variety of family activities.
- September 13-14 mother, Lyle and I drove to St. George where I represented the general authorities at the St. George Utah Stake Conference. I conducted a meeting with the stake presidency, spoke at a meeting with the priesthood leaders and then at the evening leadership meeting. We stayed over night at the Coral Hills Motel. Sunday morning we attended the general conference sessions at two different locations and I spoke at both of them. We were invited to President Metcalf's home at the Metcalf Funeral Home to dinner after the conference was over. It was a delicious meal and shared with two missionaries who gave us a presentation afterward regarding the placement of Books of Mormon. We then drove to Mt. Pleasant where we left Mother and on to our home in Provo. I found a letter awaiting me from President Ezra Taft Benson assigning me to the Albuquerque New Mexico Region and the Price Utah Region. I hadn't known it was my last official trip to St. George. My how I have enjoyed my assignment to Norway and St. George! I shall miss those associations.
- Sunday, November 2, Lyle and I drove to Castle Dale where I met with the stake presidencies and executive secretaries in the Price Utah Region. We met in the seminary building from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. I enjoyed getting acquainted with the brethren: Castle Dale Stake: Roger D. Curtis, Earl R. Olsen, Westley R. Law, and Thomas S. Johnson; Price Stake: F. Dean Walton, J. Frank Worthen, Max James Blake, and Michael Frame; Price North Stake: James Lee Jensen, Uriel B. Todd, Charles Kent Hugh, and William Bate, Jr. We had a good meeting and made plans for the next regional meeting. On the way back we saw a road sign "Fairview 44 miles." I said to Lyle, "I've never been over that road on this side of the mountain. Let's go that way and say hello to Mother in Mt. Pleasant." She agreed and we proceeded that way. The road was asphalt and the scenery very beautiful until we reached 7,000 feet elevation. There had been some snow and cold weather at that elevation and we came to a reservoir and a steep hill which was shaded and had solid black on it. A truck was following us and I couldn't get the driver to pass us. When we got nearly to the top of the steep hill the car couldn't make it. The truck back away from us and our car began slipping backwards. I had a difficult time keeping it from sliding into the snow-filled barrow pit. When we slid backward down the road to a turn out point on the dugway I finally got the car stopped temporarily. Lyle got out and asked for help. The young truck driver opened a sack of sand along the roadway and scooped out hands full which we placed under our wheels. He was able to help me get the car turned around and headed back towards Huntington. We were very grateful for his help and to be on our way back down the mountain road. We stopped in Price and had a Chinese dinner and then continued home. I soon purchased a set of snow tires and resolved never to try going over that mountain road until good summer weather comes.
- Saturday, November 8, I flew to Denver and on to Albuquerque where I held my first meeting with the leaders there. I was met at the airport by President Burleson T. Collyer of the Albuquerque Stake and taken for a drive in the city. We stopped at Old Mexican area and had a delicious Mexican dinner before going to our meeting. The stake presidencies are: Albuquerque: Burleson Taylor Collyer, David Lowell Clark, Fred Maeser Crandall; Albuquerque East: Lyle Kay Porter, Franklin Max Jolley, Keith F. Kinghorn; Gallup: Donald C. Tnner, George G. Sloan, James B. Collyer. I returned home via Denver and had enjoyed my first visit to Albuquerque. I called Phil and Janet and talked with them while I was a the airport. I also called Mark and Susan but they were not at home. I think I am going to enjoy my new assignmetns even though I shall miss Norway and St. George.
- Monday, December 15, I attended a luncheon at the Alta Club honoring the Consul General of Norway, Per Proitz and his wife. President Kimball, Elder Thomas S. Monson, Arthur Haycock, Alf Engen (the famous Norwegian ski-jump champion), Gosta Berling, Leo Jacobsen, Ray Johnson were among those present. Roy W. Simmons, acting Consul and President of Zions First National Bank, was our host. Mr. Proitz, President Kimball, and Roy Simmons spoke at the luncheon. The Consul General and his wife were very impressed with Salt Lake City. This was their first visit, but they promised to return often. Mr. Proitz loves to ski and Alf Engen has promised to take him skiing when he returns during winter time.
- Thursday, December 18, Lyle and I (and President and Sister Oaks) attended a luncheon at the Scera Theater hosted by Governor Rampton in honor of 35 years of service by Scera. New film projection equipment, new seats, a new screen, and many other improvements have been made for the occasion. We were shown a premier showing the new film, "Against a Crooked Sky." It was exciting and very good. It was written and produced by LDS Lyman Dayton, a friend of Erlend and former BYU student; Richard Boone and LDS Stewart Petersen had leading roles.
- Christmas 1975 was enjoyed by having our children, their spouses, and all our grandchildren with us during the holiday season. With us were Erlend, Colleen, Kristin, Shari, Deborah; Philip, Janet, Neena, Kari, Michael; Jim and Dolores; Colleen, Sonja, Lyle and myself. Mother visited a couple of days before Christmas, went to Bountiful to have Christmas with Elden and Alice, and she and Rhoda came and visited with us a couple of days during the holiday season. Mark, Sue and family were not with us for Christmas day as Mark had to be on duty as chaplian at Ft. Carson. However, the day after Christmas they drove from Colorado Springs to Provo (6:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.) and joined us for the holidays. Everyone seemed happy and all were pleased with their Christmas gifts. Sonja loved her complete home stereo set (to be placed in her newly renovated and carpeted room), Colleen was thrilled with her beautiful new Lane cedar chest, Phil and Mark were pleased with their small electronic computers, Lyle and daughters liked their new gowns and robes, I was pleased with my new bedside radio which included not only AM/FM but also TV stations from 1 to 15 (sound). Many other gifts filled the front room and a gay Christmas atmosphere prevailed.
- Monday, December 29, Mark's mother Tess Tidwell Breinholt passed away from 8 years of cancer. (A lovely service was held Friday, January 2, at noon, in the Oak Hills Second Ward Chapel. Mark gave the family prayer and also sang one of his mother's favorite songs, "My Faith in Thee," accompanied by his sister Lisa.)
- The last day of 1975 (Wednesday, the 31st) Sonja broke out with the Red Measles. Dr. Roy Hammond came to see her and gave us instructions. Her fever was just under 105 by 10 p.m. and we couldn't seem to break it. Mark came and helped me administer to Sonja and within one-half hour the fever subsided. 1975 had been an eventful year but had brought more blessings to us and our loved ones than it had brought sorrows. The passing of Tess was sad and yet there was a beautiful spirit in the home. She was relieved of her terrible suffering and Floyd said, "No two people have had a happier marriage than Tess and I."