This is an excerpt from the Edgemont 14th Ward history published in the late nineties. It is a basic life history of Bruce Max Snow. I have made spelling corrections along with other corrections listed in brackets.
INTERVIEWEE: BISHOP BRUCE M. SNOW
INTERVIEWERS: MARIAN JOHNSON
DATE OF INTERVIEW: 5/20/97
INTERVIEW SUBJECT: Edgemont 14TH WARD HISTORY
TRANSCRIPTIONIST: SHIRLEY WEIDNER
J: The first question I’d like to ask you, Bishop Snow is about when and where you were born and maybe some circumstances of why you were in that particular place?
GRANDPA AND GRANDMA MARRIOTT
S: I was born April 10,1945 in the Dee Hospital, Ogden, UT. My father was overseas (Military) in the Philippine Islands at the time of my birth. My mother grew up in a small village called Warren near Plain City, Utah. Her father was Arthur Wayment (A.W.) Marriott, of the John Marriott line. John Marriott crossed the plains with the Saints and founded Marriott, Utah. Grandpa’s (Edward Marriott) father disowned him at birth. He lived with the East family. His Mother (Martha Wayment) married David East approximately two years after Grandpa was born. He only saw his birth Father twice before his 28th birthday. First, in Plain City, his aunt Ida Cramer while riding in a horse and buggy pulled over and said, ”That’s your dad”. (In reference to the man, her brother, sitting next to her) The buggy drove on and nothing else was said. After his marriage to Hazel Wade (daughter of James Monroe Wade) while exiting a trolley in Ogden he saw a man getting on and exclaimed to Grandma,”That’s my dad.”
J: Did his father know him at that point?
S: Yes, his father knew who he was. Later in life, when his father he was sick my grandfather went to his home often and took care of him. This has given me strength over the years-to know that grandfather, who came from humble circumstances, helped his father when he had rejected him. He started a little farm out in the salt flats, married, and had empathy for his father to tend him while he was dying. Note: his step father requested he leave at age 17 for no apparent reason and Grandpa also helped him during his old age. A great man.
Grandma was a great woman who was supportive, helpful, kind and considerate. I loved to eat breakfast with her on the blue (Fire King) dishes.
My father was William Max Snow. My mother was Rhea Marriott. There’s an interesting story of when young Willard J. Marriott (founder of Marriott Corporation) was visiting Warren, where my grandfather was trying to make a living raising sheep and farming. He said, “Arthur, you ought to come in with me and start a hot dog stand in Ogden. I’m thinking about doing something in Ogden. Grandpa said, “You’re a fool to do that”. Just kind of an interesting sidelight, as they sat talking over the fence.
SNOW LINE—WILLIAM MAX SNOW HISTORY (DAD)
On the Snow side, my grandmother, Rose Gibbons, came as a child across the plains. She rode in a handcart part of the way and also the train.
Our Snow line in a very small line.( As of this writing only myself, my brothers Brent and Brad and their families.) There was a runaway, I believe in the 1820’s from Staffordshire, England. He came to the United States, married, and joined the church, crossed the plains. There was one son born in that generation. No other kids. That son had one son. There was only one son and no daughters. Note: this was my understanding as a young boy, however Cindy is discovering facts that might give a different light on my earlier understanding. My grandfather had a daughter (Gwen, adopted) and two sons, my father, and his older brother Cluff who was an Educator and lived in Ogden. Cluff and Helen had no children and Gwen and Wendell adopted three. I have two younger brothers Brent and Brad. So we are literally the Snow line.
J: When you were growing up in Ogden and your father was in the Philippines, when did he come home?
DAD IN PHILIPPINES-WORLD WAR II
S: Actually, I didn’t grow up in Ogden. I was born while Dad was in the Philippines and I lived with my mother and grandfather until my father came back from the war. My father has an interesting story. He was a school teacher, drafted, landed on the Philippines and was in the infantry. His unit was going into the jungle. Literally nobody ever came back alive. That afternoon, a Sergeant from McArthur’s headquarters talked to his group and said, “Is there anybody here who can type?” Father raised his hand and said, “Well, I can type a little”. He said, “Come with me, soldier.” Dad took a typing test, did well and the Sergeant said, “Snow, go get your duffle bag, you’re not going out with your unit. We’re reassigning you.” Dad was assigned to McArthur’s headquarters. Dad said his unit went into the jungle and he never saw them again.
Dad was in the office and received the official notification from Washington to McArthur that the war was over . It came in on teletype. Before giving it to McArthur, he and his buddy got two copies. We might have the original in Dad’s scrapbook.
I was probably 2 or 3 years old when we moved to Shelley, Idaho. My father was a school teacher and coach. Later we moved to Firth, Idaho, which is five miles away. My father was the principal and mother stayed home with the kids. She was active in community events and when I was in the 7th grade we moved to St. Anthony, Idaho. (1957) My father was the Superintendent of Fremont County schools.
Dad and Mom thought education was very important. I never realized while growing up you actually had an option to go to college. I thought it was Grade School, Jr. High, High School and College then you could do what you wanted.
DAD-LAVA HOT SPRINGS, IDAHO
My father came from humble circumstances. He was raised on a small farm in Idaho.(Arimo) There was no running water, no indoor plumbing and no neighbors.. They lived next to a one-room schoolhouse that had a basketball hoop on one end of the room. Dad and his brother Cluff practiced basketball every day and they became competent on there own having no formal coaching. They rode horses to school and later moved to Lava Hot Springs, Idaho to attend High School. Grandpa Snow (Douglas Arthur and Annie Laura Gibbons) was the Sheriff of the town and had a dog named “Bomber” who was regionally renown for his efforts in catching crooks. Grandpa loved boxing. They lived in a small red house near the LDS Church. I swam for hours at the Lava swimming pools and played golf on the local 4 hole golf course. Dad was king of the “Swimming Rings” in Lava where he worked and was a great athlete and life guard..
After High School, Weber College offered Dad a working scholarship. There were no athletic scholarships in those days, but they offered him a job if he would play basketball at Weber College. Dad was excited, because there was no other way for him to go to college. That’s how he got educated. Stan Watts was on the team with Dad. (Basketball Coach at BYU) He also liked my Mother. Dad liked Mom from the first time he met her at a party. Mom worked for the telephone company after she left Warren and for some time lived on Monroe St. in Ogden.
J: What did he study? What did he teach?
S: He studied Physical Education. After Weber he graduated from Utah State and received his Masters Degree from Idaho State several years later. He did janitorial work in the gymnasiums and he ran the inter-mural programs at USU. He played center on the football team.
J: As you were growing up, what kind of influence would you say your father had on you? As a mentor?
MOM’S AND DAD’S RULES
S: Father and Mother had some interesting rules. Mother was the backbone, of our family. She has always been very quiet, but very strong. She kept us in the church. She always made sure we were at church functions, that we were doing the right thing. Rule One, we never could have a car while in high school. We could drive the family car, but we could never have our own car. Their theory on dating was interesting. Some kids wanted to go steady. Remember when we used the term, Going steady? I liked a girl and thought I’d like to go steady with her. Dad took me aside and said, “Look, I think we’ve been way too tough on you, so I’m going to really loosen up. You can go on a date every night of the week–every night of the week.” I said, “Dad, are you nuts?” He said, “No, every night. Do you agree to that?” “Yeah, Okay, Yeah.” He said, “There is just one condition. Will you abide by that condition?” “Well, yeah. Every night, a date–this is really good”. He said, “Okay–you can’t go with the same girl. You can have 7 dates a week. You can go out with 5 girls every night. You just can’t go with the same girl twice”. Did you agree to this?” “Yeah, yeah, okay” I had agreed and it was interesting how he handled I always respected him for that teaching.
J: How did you explain that to the girl? Or did you have to?
S: I didn’t have to explain. He gave me two options, he said, “You can tell her or I’ll tell her. It doesn’t matter.”
J: So how many times did you date during the week?
S: Never. Never went out with her again. Never. Not one time. It gave me an interesting perspective and it changed my social activity in high school. I got to know more people and it was good for me. I’m not saying it’s the right thing for everybody, but my dad knew me and it was the right thing for me. As a result, I knew everybody in the town by name.
J: Did he have the same kind of rule for your brothers?
S: I’m not sure. I suspect they were different. I think he handled each child differently.
J: Were there any other rules that you can remember? Did you have to be in at a certain time?
S: We generally had to be in at midnight. He knew what I was doing. One time after a dance there was a problem with a boy-girl relationship. Two boys got in a fight over a girl. fight. I stepped in, got hit and knocked down. This was about 11:30 and the police came and broke up the fight as everybody scattered. I walked home and was there at 11:55 walked in and reported–this was another rule, “Hey, Dad, I’m home. Are you awake?” “Yeah”, I started to walk down to the basement where we slept and he called out, “Are you okay?’ and I said, “Yeah, what do you mean?” “Well, when you got hit–did that hurt?” I thought, “How did Dad know what happened 20 minutes ago–He’s lying here in bed.” Father always seemed to know those types of things. They kept tabs on me. I always remember the lesson. It was a great way to grow up.
RHEA MARRIOTT SNOW (MOM)
The happiest times of my life are childhood memories. My childhood was like living in the Celestial Kingdom. We had rules that I felt great about. They weren’t forced on me. They would be discussed with me. My mom would tell me the reasons both pro and con. She explained her thoughts and if I disagreed, I gave her good reasons and maybe she would change her mind. She always seemed to have the right reasons and I never could get much of a change.
J: You said she was involved in the community. Can you describe that?
S: She was president of the Professional Women’s Association in Idaho Falls. While we lived in Firth she worked at a little gift shop. She was a salesperson at the shop in Idaho Falls and did such a nice job she became she became the president of the organization. She was always been interested in the family, the community and especially in the church. I she’s always been the one that kept the family together in the church.
J: Do you have some specific examples of how they disciplined you or were very proud of you?
S: I came home from high school having done something my mother didn’t like. I can’t remember the exact situation but she was upset with me and I knew I was wrong. She raised her hand to spank me and I grabbed her hand and she started crying. I thought, “How can such a frail mother have such an impact?” and I said, “Mom, I’m sorry”. I had so much respect for her, I guess, because I think she treated me with respect. We would discuss things. That discussion did not mean –even though you had a good argument–you were going to win, by any means, but you had the chance to discuss it. She knew I was a child. She knew I was a kid and ultimately she made the decision. I remember her handling things very well and wishing I had had that talent.
BASEBALL —FIRTH, IDAHO & BOISE, IDAHO
While growing up in Firth I developed a great love for baseball and played Little League in Blackfoot. Dad took me to every practice and game. (Eleven miles one way) I played for the Jets and we dominated the league the three years I played. I was the most valuable player my last year. (12 years old) Our All Star team played in the Little League Tournament in Pocatello. Dad taught me all I ever learned about baseball. He was a great coach. Dad was the master of the fungo bat, probably the best that ever played. We played “PEPPER” hour upon hour and I continued the tradition with all our children. This influence lasted for many years. As an example while living in Boise I coached my kids (Melissa Tyson, and Brant) to the West Boise Championship (Boise Dodgers). Melissa was the catcher, hit a home run, Tyson led the league in runs scored, pitched the final inning of the championship game and made the game winning out. They were undefeated and the enthusiasm came from the coaching of my Dad.
Mom came from modest circumstances. (My mother’s still alive. She moved to a white condo in Provo by the Temple in 1999. My father passed away May 5, 1988) I send my mom an orange every Christmas. For several years she received only an orange and banana at Christmas. To this day an orange and banana are special to MOM. I sent her a chocolate orange one year for Christmas but it wasn’t the same.
I never realized our modest means nor did I care. We didn’t have an overabundance of material things, but we were always involved in interesting activities.
We went on trips. We did interesting things. I’ve since realized–and we’ve done this in our family–we never stayed in the Hilton–ever. We stayed in modest and cheaper motels. We didn’t live at a high level but we did as much as people with great wealth. We learned much. (traveling, geography, reading, sports, current events, weather, history, literature, English, farming, education, government, cleanliness, organization, family history, nature, wild life, etc.) We walked everywhere never taking a taxi.
We fished in the Blackfoot Canal, but were prohibited from swimming in the Canal, ate fish and chips in San Francisco, attended Church parties, took Dad’s ‘camping bus’ camping to Hebgen Lake (Rainbow Point) near West Yellowstone, and took many trips to Yellowstone.
We spent much time swimming in Lava Hot Springs and every Thanksgiving went to Grandma Marriott’s house in Warren. All the cousins played football before Thanksgiving Dinner. I also rode on Grandpa’s green John Deere tractor during plowing season and often during the harvest. I would sit on his lap for hours.
J: Now, you traveled mostly in the United States?
S: In the U.S. and Canada with my Mother and Father. We took several trips along the Pacific coast and a very memorable trip Saskatoon. We made trips to Utah and California.
BRUCE AND CINDY SNOW FAMILY TRAVEL
Our family has been on every river, every inch of land in Idaho and Utah. While living in Idaho we took the kids camping, (Cascade, Yellowstone, Red Fish Lake, Silver Creek Plunge, Trinity Lake, Island Park, Banner Summit, Sawtooths and Sun Valley, etc.) white water rafting, (Cindy pulled Brant off our “Old Red” raft at split rock on the Main Salmon and he and Cindy nearly drowned. I dove in to rescue Brant and Melissa took the raft through the class three rapid alone at 10 years of age). I have rafted the Selway, Salmon, Middle Fork of the Salmon, Snake, Payette system, Colorado, Green River, Provo and many more. We had to sell the Archilles 16’ red raft when we went on our mission to Korea. Years later we (Melissa) saw the raft in Shelley, Idaho on our way to Yellowstone. I loved being with the family and kids on these trips. These four kids (Melissa, Tyson, Brant and Jessica) have brought me great happiness on the earth. Cindy has always been the apple of my eye.
CLEVELAND, OHIO TRIP WITH DAD-PICK UP BUS
Back to my childhood. As Superintendent of Schools, the School Board sent Dad to pick up a bus in Lima, Ohio. We boarded the City of Portland, a train and went non stop to Cleveland, Ohio. The All Star Baseball Game (1954) was in Cleveland. We could not get a hotel. I don’t know if it was because we didn’t have money or they were all booked up.
Dad spoke to a Bellboy. He said, “Just come over a lay on this couch.” I slept in the lobby all night in my dad’s lap. We arose at 4 AM walked to the stadium and purchased baseball tickets and viewed the game. We drove and slept in the bus. It was a life changing trip. I’ll never forget the trip. We would buy an apple in a country store and eat in the bus as journeyed back to Idaho. Great creativity but not many resources. Dad gave me a silver dollar in the hotel. The next morning he told me, “Go talk to the guy over at the counter. I don’t believe they have silver dollars here.” I went over and spoke to the man who had a fancy suit. He was obviously a wealthy person. He gave me ten dollars for the silver dollar.
J: What did you do with the money?
S: I probably saved it. I was not good at spending money.
J: Did you have a job as you were growing up?
SPUD VACATION AND FAIR IN BLACKFOOT, IDAHO
S: I did. I had a great job every fall for 2 weeks. In Idaho we had Spud vacation. All schools were recessed for the potato harvest. It was not a vacation. It was 14 days of hard work and in the 4th grade I earned $40.00 in 2 weeks, which was a lot of money at that time. I took three dollars to the Eastern Idaho State Fair in Blackfoot. I rode the rides but was careful to bring back two dollars and 10 cents. I spent 90¢ at the fair and had a great time. Every Fall I pick potatoes and later bucked potatoes when I was older and stronger. During High School Summers I worked for the U.S. Forest Service in Island Park. I surveyed logging roads. The first day the foreman said, “Well, let me tell you, we’ve got most of the stuff done for this summer, so here’s the cards–we play cards for money”. They dealt the cards but I wanted to work. I played cards briefly. Then thought, “I ought to learn something while I’m out here”. So I got a transit and tried to experiment. I did not know what I was doing because I was a laborer but in time I actually did figured how to use the equipment.
J: What is a transit?
SUMMER JOB IN ISLAND PARK, IDAHO
S: You shoot a center line for logging roads. We were a survey crew, surveying mountain sides and determining where roads could be built. An engineer was in charge. The next year I was allowed to use the transit because of my knowledge. I received an increase in pay. It was a good lesson to learn. Instead of just taking it easy and trying the easy thing, my mom and dad taught me to work hard. Try to learn something. You may not have a lot of resources, but what you have, use wisely.
I’m really grateful for the experience because I learned when you go the 2nd mile, a lot of good things can happen. I worked for the Forest Service the rest of my years in high school.
J: What were some of the other things that you did?
S: Would you like to hear the most difficult experience I had in my youth?
VARSITY BASKETBALL—ST. ANTHONY, IDAHO
Our family moved to St. Anthony’s where Dad was Our family moved to St. Anthony’s where Dad was superintendent of Fremont County schools. When we lived in Firth there wasn’t a lot for me to do–very similar to my father’s situation. I played basketball all day in the gym–all summer. I was a very good basketball player in the 8th grade. As a freshman in high school I had a very difficult situation arise. We had a South Fremont Varsity team that had 5 starting players who were all Seniors. They had a very good team when they were Juniors. They were highly rated in the state. I was very fortunate to make the JV team as a Freshman, which I thought was really great, but the Varsity team lost the first 9 games and nobody could figure out why. One afternoon at four o’clock I got a call from the Varsity basketball coach (Onan Meacham) saying, “You’re not dressing for the JV game”, and I thought, “Oh, they’re cutting me”, then he said, “I want you to be down to the gym at 6:00 and I’ll tell you what’s going to happen”. I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t want to say anything so I just walked down to the gym and he said, “We are bringing you up to the Varsity tonight. You’re going to start. You’re going to be the starting point guard at the Varsity game tonight” I was in total shock. I couldn’t believe it and when I walked into the dressing room I had never felt so much animosity towards me as a person. Here I am a scrawny Freshman kid. You know, the kind the Seniors hang up in the locker. My dad was superintendent of schools and I could see the pressure coming. I was a good player. I was not as good as those kids, by any means. Tears came to my eyes. I started crying. I did not want to be there. I wanted out and then everybody kept saying, “Why are you here?” then the coach said, “We’re bringing Snow up and he’s starting today as a Guard”. The dressing room went so quiet. Everyone there was a Senior or Junior. It is the most pressure I have ever felt. I didn’t care if I scored a point. I realized after the game, these 5 kids were good but there was no teamwork. They didn’t pass the ball, they shot–they were five individuals. The first time I brought the ball down the floor it hit my foot and started to roll out-of-bounds. I retrieved it and I drove for the basket throwing a pass to a kid that was wide open. It hit him in the face and he said to me, “That’s my fault. I should have caught the ball. Nobody ever passes to me” and 3 other players heard his remark and started to play as a team. It was South Fremont vs. North Fremont High School our undefeated and hated rival. All I did was pass the ball to people who were open and these players got confidence and made shots thus we won by 10 points. We won 9 in a row. I also scored 4 points in this first game. We also beat the team that won the state tournament that year.(Bonniville)
J: So you made it a team?
S: We were a team and the most difficult season of my life.
J: After the first game, though, what happened?
S: After the first game I had 4 supporters, the seniors who were starting. They tried to shelter me. There were 5 other kids on the team that were very, very hostile. Threatening, hostile–in every sense. They were Juniors. It was also similar when they were Seniors and I was a Sophomore. But I was in a different position because I was a much better player and I matured during the process and was the leader of the team. But as a Freshman when your dad’s the Superintendent it was difficult. After 3 or 4 games we became a very good team and the community and school support grew quickly.
J: What is your evaluation of school sports? Do you think in some ways that that’s a negative aspect to going to school?
HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS-ACTIVITIES
S: I was recruited out of high school by Dixie, Ricks, and Utah State. However, I think we over emphasize sports. I’m a person who knew every major league baseball player by name and statistic. I lived and died sports. I also had other interests including debate and drama. I knew scholarship was important. I would bring my class schedule home and discuss it with my parents. My dad was at every PTA Meeting and every game I ever played. Likewise I have been to most of my kids activities. I’ve never missed a teacher’s conference since we moved to Provo. I’ve been to Edgemont Elementary, Farrer Junior High and Timpview High School for all the children’s parent conferences.
Church sports were very important in our small town. During the summer months I played Church softball twice a week at night and slept outside in Fort Henry Park the other three nights. (The Park was right across the street from our house. One year a played short stop for the Wilford 1st Ward and we had a great fast pitch team. We ended up going to the All Church Fast Pitch Softball Tournament in Salt Lake City. We were also active in volleyball and won the Stake tournament several years in a row. Sports were very prominent in our Church and Civic activities. In addition to sports our ward participated in the All Church Dance Festival at Rice stadium in Salt Lake City. These were wonderful youth activities and we practiced earl every morning to qualify.
J: Now, tell me about the drama and debate. What did you do in drama?
S: I enjoyed drama and had a lead role in the South Fremont all-school play. I participated in various other productions. I was the only student that liked sports, debate and drama. I loved the debate club. We started the debate club the year I was a Junior so we were the charter class. Mrs. Parrish talked me into joining. We debated with other High Schools around the State and were somewhat inexperienced but performed satisfactory. The next year we were much better. I have debated successfully and unsuccessfully and enjoyed the journey, growth and experience.
J: What would you say was your first spiritual experience?
FIRST SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCES-FIRTH, IDAHO
S: My first spiritual experience was in Junior Sunday School when I was asked to give a 2 1/2 minute talk. I asked mom what a 2 1/2 minute talk was, she explained and helped me prepare. Next Sunday in the red church in Firth, Idaho I gave the talk and it was a spiritual experience. I prayed for the Holy Ghost to be there and I’m confident my childs prayer was answered.
J: What made you feel that was a spiritual experience? Did you feel you were helped?
S: Yes. I felt the Holy Ghost helped me give the talk. It was a well prepared talk. I knew because all of the teachers made nice comments. I knew it wasn’t me. I knew that I couldn’t remember all the material and yet I did remember. Now some people will say, that is a coincidence but in my heart I know it was the Holy Ghost.
Another spiritual experience I remember early in life occurred in the same church house. I was sitting in the kitchen where our Sunday School class was taught. The boys sat on the kitchen counter the girls sat in one row of chairs in front of the boys.
In my mind I was thinking, “I wonder if the prophet, Joseph Smith was really a prophet” and I thought, “I’ll pray about this” and so I closed my eyes and I prayed. When I opened my eyes, I saw Jeanette Lyons sitting in front of me with her a beautiful pony tail. I reached down and jerked her pony tail, “Don’t do that,” she said. “Oh, I’m sorry.” Just a seven year old boy’s reaction. Then with perfect clarity in my mind–as clear as we’re talking tonight a voice said, “Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. Don’t ever think about this again” and I never have. I have never doubted the prophet, Joseph Smith since. This was a clear sign to me and interestingly it occurred after I had jerked Jeanette Lyon’s pony tail. Since then I’ve never worried about Joseph Smith. I have maintained since, “The church is true because no matter what you say you can never deny what happened in the little red church when I was 7 years old one week from being 8 years old and baptized. That’s why I was thinking of the boy prophet Joseph because I was being baptized in one week.
J: Where were you baptized?
S: I was baptized in Shelly, Idaho by Elder Christiansen. I remember the ordinance clearly.
J: Where did you go to college?
COLLEGE-UTAH STATE UNIVERSITY
S: Initially, Utah State University for one year, then Boise Junior College followed by BYU after my mission. (I also took classes at Cal State Fullerton and Pepperdine while completing my Life Time teaching credential in California) My first year was a terrible year. My first quarter the President sent a letter home to my parents saying we’re going to dismiss your son for academic failure. I couldn’t get it together. I was home sick etc. I was discouraged. I didn’t know what to expect. I came from a small high school. I was over my head in Chemistry. The second quarter was marginal, but I thought,” Why am I failing. Other students from my High School were excelling. I needed to take control of my situation. It was my fault and I needed to “buck up,” get moving and quit feeling sorry for myself. The third quarter I took a political science course for Juniors and Seniors. It was a large class, (300 students) taught in the auditorium. I liked the class and decided to focus on studying and not socializing. I came in 6th out of 300. My geography class became interesting. I was ranked number 1. I was at the top of all my classes during the quarter. I was ready to be thrown out of school the first quarter and made the Dean’s List the third quarter. I’m not a brilliant person but if I always work hard I can do reasonably well. I learned to WORK HARD.
J: So you didn’t work in High School?
HIGH SCHOOL WORK AND CLASSES—SPORTS LETTERS
S: When I was in High School, I had very little time to work, because I played football, basketball, baseball and track after school. I seldom got home before 7 o’clock at night. From 3 to 7 I was on a sports field. Saturdays I was a grocery boy at Later’s market. I bagged, stocked and carried bagged food out to vehicles. I worked during had spud vacation and in the summer at the Forest Service. Those were the main jobs , other than around the house. I had lots of chores. Vacuuming and dusting and weeding and those types of things.
I did study in high school, but initially not in college. I had to study in high school because I wasn’t a bright kid. I had to study Algebra, Physics, Chemistry, and Geometry every night after practice from 7 to 9. I “lettered” in twelve (12) sports in four years. Baseball (4) Basketball (4) Football (3) Track (1). I was very busy and my parents expected me to study but I was involved as much or more than and young man in St. Anthony. My initial failure in college was not realizing the time and effort needed for academics.
J: Did you go on a Mission?
BOISE JUNIOR COLLEGE
S: Yes. After attending one year at Utah State I transferred to Boise State (Boise Junior College) played basketball and baseball on scholarship. Nobody asked me to go on a mission but here is how it came about.
There were two active Mormon kids who lived on campus. Phil Choules who played basketball and myself. We lived in the dorms. (Morrison Hall) There were some Mormon kids that lived in Boise and commuted. We tried to keep the LDS standards. We were under pressure but hung together. One of my best friends was a black kid, Lee Harvey, who once told me, “Bruce, you know what I can’t understand–the Mormon church won’t let me have the Priesthood and everybody else here says you and Phil are bigots. They never say that to your face, but they say it behind you, because you’re Mormons. Yet you’re the only two people that treat me like a human being”. I’ve never forgotten that statement. He was a terrific friend.
J: Now, was that a problem for you? Black problem?
S: Not at all
J: Not having the Priesthood didn’t occur to you that you should question it or anything?
S: President McKay confirmed the policy, I accepted it. Actions speak volumes. I don’t know if I answered the question. What was the question?
J: I wanted to know about going on a Mission
S: Here’s how that came about. After basketball season was over and towards spring, a Catholic kid from South Bend named, Pat Batik, who was a football player, asked us if we would room with him the next year. Phil and I were 2 of the most popular kids in that dorm. We didn’t drink. We didn’t smoke. We didn’t carouse around. We never had girls in our room but we were very popular kids among the sports jocks, because we could hold our own. We were discussing religion one afternoon and Batik says, “You know, I got a girl for you tonight. Want to take this girl?” “No” “Let’s go get her” “No” “Let me tell you something, Snow, you sit here and think you’re so good. You won’t do any fun things, but I don’t see you going on a Mission for the Mormon Church.” I said, “Pat, my man, you are right. It is time for me to go on a Mission” and he said, “No, man no. We’re living together. I’m just kidding. Seriously, Snow, I am just kidding.” I said, “No Pat, seriously. It is time for me to go on a Mission.” I said, “This is incredible that you of all people–it is time”, I said, “I’m out of here. We can’t live together” “No, man it was a joke. Don’t take this seriously,” he said. “It’s time. You made your point.” For days, these guys would say, “No, you can’t go. You’ve got to come back to school.” So I called the Bishop and said, “It’s time for me to go on a Mission” and that’s how the decision was made.
J: It’s so often that we really need to approach our young people they need that little push.
S: As Bishop. I try to ask every Young Man to go on a Mission. I haven’t asked all the Young Women but I do feel I can ask them, “Are you interested in going on a Mission?” Nobody asked my Brother Brent to go on a mission so to be safe I ask and expect all worthy, healthy and able Young Men to go on missions. Actually in a strange and perverse way Pat Batik did the asking for me to go on a mission.
KOREA MISSION PREPARATION AND CALL
J: Where did you go?
S: Korea. My parents were nervous but excited. My family paid for the Mission, $59 monthly then $79 toward the end of the mission.
S: The other kid that played basketball, Phil Choules–he went on a Mission, also. The Dorm brats just couldn’t believe it. Nobody does this. I went to his farewell in Preston and while I was there, my mother called me saying, “You got your Mission call” and I said, “Where am I going?” She said, “You’re going to Korea” “Korea!” I was excited. I had no clue where Korea was. I’d heard of the Korean War. I didn’t know where it was. I said, “Phil, this was a nice farewell but I’m out of here. I have to get home. It was a long drive home.
J: Did you look it up on the map?
S: Yes. I called Bishop Vincent Birch saying, “I have a Mission call. I’m going to Korea” and he said, “Well, I don’t think we have a Mission in Korea”. He pulled out a reference book and said, “There’s no Mission in Korea. I’d better call the church”. So he called the church and the receptionist said, “I don’t think we have a Mission there”. “Well, we’ve got a boy that got a Mission call.” said Bishop Birch. I always liked Bishop Vincent Birch. He was friendly, helpful and encouraging.
TWO WEEK MISSION BUTTE, MONTANA,
When I was a Junior in high school, our Stake, the Yellowstone Stake, had a program where you could go on a 2 week Mission during the summer. I received a Mission call to Butte, Montana. While there I had a gun pulled on me, chased by a dog and cursed several times. I thought, “Wow, Missions are interesting.” I lived with Elder Hunter and Elder Gould from California. They were full time Missionaries. I did everything with them for two weeks.
J: Do you think you influenced anybody in your dorm?
BOISE JUNIOR COLLEGE INFLUENCE
S: I am not sure. We had a mixture of Hawaiian football players, oriental students that lived in Western Idaho farming communities, Japanese and Basque kids. There is a very large Basque community in Western Idaho. I do know that Harvey Nishamura was baptized about 20 years later, in our Meridian 8th Ward. I feel we had an influence on him. We were friends over the years and he married a Mormon girl. Gary Benagachia, a Basque kid, was baptized and became the Stake President in Winnamucca. The long walks to the Broadway Church probably kept us in tune with the spirit which allowed some influence.
J: You were a Minority?
S: More than any other students on campus.
J: Now let’s talk a little bit about your Mission.
KOREAN MISSION ARRIVAL SEOUL, KOREA
S: I went to Korea in October of 1965. Spencer & Shirley Palmer were the Mission President and Mission Mother. President Palmer replaced Gail Carr who was the first Mission President in Korea. My arrival is still legendary as I was picked up at the airport by President Palmer and a few Elders. I was informed that a criminal was in the van (affectionately referred to as the GREEN CAMEL) because the Elders were transporting him to a police station in Seoul. At a predetermined time the Van conveniently stopped on the Han River Bridge and all passengers had to disembark. The van quickly pulled away leaving me and the non English speaking criminal standing on the bridge. I was frightened. For several hours I followed him not knowing where we were and more importantly where we were going. I had no options. Finally, while carrying raw fish on a string we arrived at the mission home. What a welcome sight. I was then told by the criminal he was Elder Han In Sang a fluent English speaking missionary working on the Book of Mormon translation. He later became a general authority.
KOREAN BOOK OF MORMON
First Nephi was the only part of the B of M translated into Korean. We taught older Koreans from the Japanese B of M because they learned Japanese during the occupation. Before I left Korea the translation was completed and I have three of the original copies of the B of M. The Korean Book of Mormon was printed on February 15, 1967 and published on February 20, 1967.
KOREAN MISSION EXPERIENCES
I served and traveled all of Korea. I served over two and one half years. I was the AP prior to leaving and I was in charge of getting drought relief clothing to the poor in the southern Korea islands.(Won Do) Spencer Palmer is the person who got the Mission organized. I lived with a Korean companion much of the time. I find that interesting. There were only 2 or 3 Korean Missionaries in the whole Mission and I live with them most of the time. One of them is still my best friend. (Chang Bung Hoon or Yang Bo Chang) He lives in Tahiti. He’s a multi-millionaire and has property in Provo. I opened Young Dong Po which later became the Seoul West Mission where we served as Mission Presidents from 1989-1992.
Rex Carlson from Burley, Idaho was my trainer and we had no experience nor language ability. We baptized a seven year old girl because the birth certificate in Chinese did not reflect the Korean age. Months later Church Headquarters informed us the baptism would stand.
I was the mission driver when President Kimball visited Korea. I listened as he explained to Pres. Palmer his call as an Apostle and subsequent personal revelation of the Lord in the mountains of Arizona. It was over heard by me but is still very confidential.
The most famous quote among the Korean missionaries occurred as follows: President Hinckley, then Apostle Hinckley had a very rough airplane ride on KAL. (Korean Airlines) Pres. Palmer and others including me met him at the airport and as he deplaned his hair was disheveled, he looked like he had been in a difficult landing, turning to President Palmer he said, ”You can go to Hell on KAL.” That quote is still famous among all the Korean missionaries of that vintage.
J: What were your hardest experiences? Was the language difficult?
S: We were sent to Korea with no language training. There was no language program in country so we learned by memorizing and trial and error. One of the most difficult situations was health. I had TB and jaundice and still can’t give blood. Eating was a problem. We couldn’t drink the water without boiling it first. Because of “night soil” we couldn’t eat vegetables, strawberries, or other food stuffs which were fertilized with human fertilizer. The country was in poverty. The tallest building was the Bondo Hotel. It was 4 stories high. When we went back in 1989 there were 10,000 high rise apartment buildings just in our mission area. The country had made dramatic changes. As a young missionary I found the people were poor, humble and more receptive to the gospel. They didn’t have cars, electronic equipment, toys and entertainment. They weren’t so busy and were very receptive to the gospel message.
J: You made a lot of converts then.
S: Several. Kim Beck Ju and his spouse were young student converts in Pusan. As Mission President I called him to be my First Counselor in the Mission Presidency. Those young converts have taken over the leadership of the Church. It is great to see. I understand Koreans but not Chinese or Japanese.
J: How did you get to BYU?
AFTER MISSION: BYU & BSU
S: After my mission I enrolled at Boise State. Elder Carlson asked me to: “Just come down and stay with me a week at BYU during the summer”. I agreed. Fell in love with BYU and stayed. It changed the course of my life. I majored in Physical Education and minored in English. I was preparing to become a Secondary Education teacher. I student taught English Literature at Spanish Fork High School. My student teaching was a great experience.
MEETING CINDY AND BYU
I met Cindy in the first class I attended. It was a 7 o’clock early morning folk dance class. She had transferred from Cedar City and enrolled in Folk Dance, her first class. Three years later we dated for the first time.
J: What was her last name?
S: Cynthia Louise Hardy daughter of Blaine and Beth Hardy, Springville, UT. Cindy was the first Women to graduate from BYU with a degree in Computer Science [the first women finished a semester before her but they “graduated” together that year]. She had many boy friends and was difficult to get to know. She was dating a teacher at BYU and all her boy friends were rich and high flyers. I was trying to follow the spirit and after many months of little movement I prayed asking for direction and brought several options for consideration. My interpretation of the “still small voice” was Cindy. I was meeting many women with varying degrees of interest, disappointments and happiness. She graduated first in her class then moved to California because she had a great job offer with Hughes Aircraft in Fullerton. We weren’t really dating much but I went down to visit her and we got a little more serious. As the Summer progressed we became much more serious and got engaged. I had a teaching offer in Boise and we planned to marry and live in Boise. However, Cindy was doing what she wanted to do, so I decided to try to get a job in LA. Prior to moving I spoke to the Superintendent of Boise to make sure there would be no problems if I left. He was disappointed but agreeable.
BIAS, RACIAL DISCRIMINATION IN LA SCHOOL DISTRICT FIRST JOB HUNT—WATTS, CALIFORNA
In the previous Spring I had taken a mandatory LA city test and scored high on the PE portion. I received a telephone call from LA School District (Mr. White) saying, “Mr. Snow we have to offer you a job”. We can’t guarantee where you will be but we have to offer you a job because you scored in the top percentile and anyone scoring that high in the oral and written physical education test must receive an offer. He further explained, “I want you to know that no particular person has to hire you, so as you interview know if they will not hire you we will find a job for you somewhere in the system.” I chose the Southern District which included Watts. He was silent for a long time then spoke,” “Those are all Black schools. Our black teachers don’t live in those area. And you can’t live there either. You’ll commute. Nobody wants to go there. All the black teachers want out. There’s a very good chance you will get a job there, think about this very carefully”. I said, “Okay.”
My first interview was at Gompers Jr. High School. They had a white principal who said, “These scores are really good. This looks very good. We like you. The scores are excellent but there’s a problem and it’s going to be a very difficult one to overcome”. I was taken back because he was very serious. He said, “You’re not black–you’re white and I’m not hiring a white teacher.” That was the first time I had seen or felt racial discrimination. It shocked me because LA Unified School District was supposedly was one of the most progressive school districts in the country. They paid well and pretended to not be discriminatory the District professed diversity. I was the most diverse applicant they had. I never realized an institution could discriminate, especially in LA.
My next interview was at Jefferson High School. I really wanted to be at Jefferson. I had a great interview with a black principal and a black assistant principal. (I am purposefully not using their personal names) During our discussion they said, “I see you went to BYU.” He had my transcript. This was the time when the black issue was really hot—1971. The Principal said, “We had a Mormon Registrar here for 20 years and he did a fine job, but I’m not hiring a Mormon. We do have an opening here and you are very well qualified but I need to ask you one question and I want you to think very carefully about this question before you answer it and depending on how you answer it, I’m going to offer you a job. Are you a Mormon?” I thought, “What a strange question” and then I realized what the implication was. If I was a Mormon, I wasn’t going to get this job. I think all I had to do was to deny that I was a Mormon and I would get it. That’s what it felt like saying. He’d seen my BYU transcript knowing not everybody was a Mormon at BYU, but he had seen enough that he wanted to ask the question. I paused, “Well”—This was a tough situation for me. I didn’t have a job. We were just married. I knew I needed a job and it was the place where I wanted to be. I knew I had the job if I said ,”NO.” I again paused for a longer period of time, thought deeply, meditated and the silence was very uncomfortable. Finally I quietly said, “I am a Mormon.” The Principal said, “It’s really been nice to meet you Mr. Snow, best of luck to you” and left, walked out of the room just leaving me sitting there. I have their names in my journal. I was discouraged. I had now felt the sting of religious and racial discrimination.
The next school was Fremont High School. It’s right in the middle of Watts, this was at that time a downtown Ghetto school. This area was where the Crypts (Gang) started. I was there when it started. I had an interview with the Principal, whose name was Don Bolton. He was about 6’4”, 250 lbs. Black, tough and penetrating. I was really trying to be careful with my answers, I didn’t know what to expect. He said, “These scores look excellent. You’ve done well–tell me your philosophy on coaching,” “Tell me your philosophy on English classes. What if a kid doesn’t come to English class? What are you going to do? Do you know much about black English or can you be trained?” I said, “I don’t really know that much,” he said, “Well this is a negative for you. You know we’re going to be reading Raisin in the Sun this year but I like these philosophies, so–are you a tough guy? Are you going to have some discipline here, I don’t want these kids screwing around down here. These kids have enough problems as it is. I want them in class.” Can you make these demands happen. I said, “yes.” He said, “This job’s yours” and I was in shock. I think he had taken me and evaluated me on an even keel with everybody else and said, “It’s yours” so I started coaching there and teaching English.
During the first class I had no clue what was being said. I could not understand the students language. I also didn’t realize that a 15 year old girl had 2 kids at home. She had a mama but no father. I thought, “What have I gotten myself into?” The first faculty meeting was the most difficult. Don Bolton stood up and announced the new teachers and had me stand. I was about the only white person there and he said, “This is Bruce Snow and he graduated from BYU” and everybody booed. I thought, “What have I gotten myself into,” I decided that I was going to make a difference. Can you remember Sidney Poitier in To Sir, With Love? Sidney Poitier was a Black teacher that went into a ghetto area in England and made a difference. It was a very famous film when I was growing up and I thought, “Well, maybe I could be like Sidney Poitier in reverse”. I got to know the teachers. We got to know each other well and by semester time they were supportive.
J: Can you remember any of the specifics with relationships with teachers? Can you think of something that would really indicate how you had to be integrated?
S: I remember one teacher came in and talked to me about Black kids and he said, “You know, you’re not going to have support like you think you might coming from your culture, but don’t you ever let up on them. You expect them to do as much as anybody else” Another teacher told me a about the Black culture and how people thought, and how drugs were starting to be a problem. Those were the types of discussions. I asked one teacher, “Were you here during the first Watts riot”? He said, “Yes, here’s a picture of me with an AK-47.” He had it pointed down at a police line. He was one of the instigators. The varsity basketball coach was Japanese named, David Unia. We had a great relationship. He taught me culture, recruiting and basketball.
COACHING AT FREMONT HIGH SCHOOL, WATTS
One interesting experience happened at Jordan High School. We played all the games at 3 o’clock so we could be done by 5, because of security reasons. A couple of minutes before half time, three kids with guns came walking out on the floor. (At our school, Fremont, there were 6 off duty police guards with guns in holsters on campus in ’71. Off duty 71st Precinct Policemen) I looked around and thought, “I’m the only white man here.” I’m standing out. I got our team into the locker room then I heard a knock on the dressing room door. The security guard said, “Say, Snow, these kids are from Fremont” and I said, “Yeah, what’s your point”? They said, “Come out and tell them to put their guns down.” “Man, I’m not coming out of this door. That’s your job. You get those guns down so we can continue–I’m not coming out and telling them to put anything down”, I yelled. Finally they convinced to walk out and talk to them. I recognize one kid and he said, “Snow, you tell us to put these guns down and we’ll put ‘em down. We ain’t puttin’ ’em down ‘less you say put ’em down. These guys, they call us boy.” Then they went through this whole “we aren’t your boy” routine–by now I understood the language. I said, “Put ‘em down” and they did, then the guards beat them. Drug them out of there and I thought, “What’s going to happen at Fremont tomorrow?” Nothing happened, but it was a very interesting experience.
Another problem I faced involved the Crypts, a major gang which was just forming in Central Los Angeles. Members would charge each student .25 cents to enter the school in the mornings. I opposed the Crypts and at the front gate not realizing how dangerous the situation could become. My main reason for leaving Fremont High School was to attend Western State College of Law in Fullerton. Fremont was to long of a commute.
CINDY AT HUGHES AIRCRAFT
J: What was happening with Cindy?
S: Cindy was working at Hughes Aircraft. She would leave for work early in the morning and our paths didn’t cross much because of our schedules but we were on a path that hopefully would lead us to wonderful accomplishments and help build the kingdom.
ENGAGEMENT, MARRIAGE IN SALT LAKE
We decided to get married and there are many stories about my ineptness in this area. First, the story goes I proposed to Cindy after she had taken out the garbage. It is probably quite accurate. It was in her apartment in Anaheim. Second, A Korean saint (Brother Cha) was living in LA and had wanted to go to Salt Lake City. After we were engaged and planned to drive to Salt Lake City and get married in the Salt Lake Temple, I invited Brother Cha to drive to Utah with us. Big mistake. This was our honeymoon so one could say we took a Korean with us on our honeymoon. Not in this life time will I over come this very bad choice. The story is still told in the back-ways and byways. Another problem is our remembering the exact day of our wedding because it was changed several times but the exact date was October 23, 1971. Even to this day I think it is the 22 of Octobers.
J: Did you tell her much about what was going on?
S: She attended a couple of games. At Hollywood or Manual Arts High School we were in a close battle during a very important game. In Central LA schools it’s common language to use the word “Nigger” in talking to your friends as long as you are a black American. If you are not of this race class it is very offensive. (Similar to the Marines) During half time in pleading for more emotion the second half I said to our star player, “Come on Nigger, we need to win this game.” I immediately caught myself, felt embarrassed and was about to apologize when I realized, they didn’t even notice. I knew at this point I was accepted as an inter circle part of the group. I never said or used the word again. It’s the only time I used the word.
J: Why did you leave?
S: I realized I could not teach all my life. I had many more interests. Teaching is very important and I admire all who stay in the profession. I made a decision to attend Law School. We didn’t have enough resources so I worked full time and went to night law school for (4) four years.
BERNARDO YORBA JUNIOR HIGH-YORBA LINDA, CA
J: What did you do during the day?
S: I coached and taught at Bernardo Yorba Junior High in Yorba Linda, California. It was close to the Law School and the coaching was much less demanding. However because of my experience I was able to help raise the standard from the worst athletic program to the best in Placentia Unified School District. My closest friends were and are from that pool of teachers.
My memories of teaching include associations with Jim Thompson and Bob Sowersby. I drove to school each morning with Jim (26) miles one way. We played golf together, went to Angels baseball games, ate together, visited sites in Southern California and went to Disneyland. Bob was the Director of Entertainment at Disneyland and he took us in free probably 50 times. Many nights Cindy and I would drive the few blocks to Disneyland and enter for one or two hours, listen to the big bands and leave. Mild, humid nights with a slight orange blossom fragrance still causes a feeling of nostalgia for Southern California. Often we went to the beach (Dana Point) with Cindy’s Uncle, Max Mann and afterwards would eat Mexican food. This was my first introduction to Mexican food. We found a great eating place in Anaheim called Mexi Casa and on Friday nights Cindy and I would eat there. We lived on Sherrill Street in Anaheim, one block away from Maxwell Park. We had great relationships with our neighbors. They took us under their wings and made living in California a joy. We were members of the Anaheim 3rd Ward in the Anaheim Stake.
LAW SCHOOL-FULLERTON, CA
J: Where did you go to law school?
S: Western State College of Law in Fullerton. After graduation I clerked for a Federal Judge in Boise.
J: This was sort of an internship?
S: It’s a prestigious clerkship in the US Federal Courts.
J: Did you have any children at this time.
S: We are living proof that miracles exist on the earth today. Here is the miracle. Both Cindy and I were physically unable to have children. We had been evaluated and seen many specialists. Since we were discouraged we began a two year adoption process with LDS Social Services. If during this process you became pregnant you could not go forward. After two years and much training we were notified on Friday that a baby was available the next Monday and we should make preparations to pick the baby up. Cindy was feeling sick when we were notified so she went to the doctor, a non member who was in total shock when he announced, she was pregnant. So were we. This meant we would not be able to pick up the baby because Cindy was pregnant but also if something happened during the pregnancy we would have to start the two year process all over again. I initially wanted to just pick up the baby because nobody would know. Later I decided to pray about the situation. After prayer I drove to the LA Temple early Saturday morning to get an answer. As I was walking through the front door of the Temple our case worker walked out. I looked at him and knew the answer. I told him the situation and he was sad for us. I told him we appreciated the two year experience turned and drove home. No baby Monday. We then proceeded to have four kids in two year intervals [slightly less than two year intervals].
FIRST HOUSE IN ANAHEIM, CA (616 SHERRILL)
J: Did you live in Anaheim?
S: Our Bishop, Jim Jones, approached us with the following offer. If we would buy Jim Carters home for $1000 down then Carters could buy another lady’s home and the Bishop would get the big commission from the sale of the lady’s new home. However the hang up was there was not a buyer for Carters house. What a great deal for us. We bought the house on a California Land Lease Sale Contract for $1000 down, no other costs. The house was a little Cinderella Gingerbread style home located at 616 Sherrill, Anaheim CA.(1300 sq. feet.) We paid the $1000 and moved in with no furniture. We had been living in an apartment on Broadway Street in Anaheim. Some members in the ward (Potchlags) gave us a mattress. We had no other furniture or appliances. We had one set of 4 TV trays. Over time we slowly acquired appliances. NOTE: Five years later we sold the house for $52,000 when we moved to Boise.
ANAHEIM 3RD WARD
I was the Elders Quorum President in the Anaheim 3rd Ward, Anaheim Stake in 1973. The day after I was called I recall walking through the school yard and having the most peaceful feeling I have ever had. The confirmation of the calling was clear and sure. I have never doubted the spirit. The calling helped me to understand Church procedure and organization. At this time I also helped fight a pornography initiative that was a California Initiative.
J: Were you ever in the Army?
S: After my mission to Korea which was during the Viet Nam conflict, I had to make a choice of either joining the National Guard or waiting for my draft number which was 212 to come up. Because of my language background I chose to join the Utah National Guard whose linguistic unit was designed for my situation. I joined with several friends who were also mission companions. I was in the Korean language section, my MOS was 96 Charlie and my classification was Interrogation Prisoners of War, Korean. I did Basic Training at Ford Ord, California and AIT at Fort MacCarther near San Pedro, California. Sergeant Rocha was our Drill Instructor and I learned discipline, toughness, and respect for what he was trying to teach us under the circumstances. Because our Korean language was better than the army instructor assigned as our teacher in AIT, they cut us free every day to have “cultural experiences” in “Korea Town” Los Angles. I was a platoon leader during basic training. The Army experience in Utah was enjoyable because I was always surrounded by people I knew. Our summer training was held in California at a language training unit. I always had a fear (bad dreams) of missing the monthly weekend drills or being late. We had to be at Fort Douglas in Salt Lake City by 5:30 for roll call and it was always a challenge. After we were married and moved to California and I transferred to the California National Guard in Bell, California. In time I became the Company Clerk. (This unit was an Intelligence Unit) Our summer training was at Fort Irwin in Death Valley, California. One year it was 122 degrees and I fried an egg on the bumper of a tank. I had a six year commitment which I completed in California and was mustered out. I did not enjoy the California situation nearly as much and the Utah experience.
My closest High School friend Ken Young was killed in action during the Vietnam War after the St. Anthony (Idaho National Guard) was called up . He was killed in Vietnam. I never “closed” on his death until I visited the Vietnam Memorial in Washington D.C. several years later with the kids and traced his name on paper. I was the main speaker at his Mission Farewell at 20 years of age. I think of him often even today. I served in the Utah and California National Guard for six years.
LAW CLERK FOR JUDGE CALLISTER
J: What was the name of the Judge you clerked for?
S: Marion Callister. He was the first Mormon Federal Judge in Idaho and I was his first clerk and the first Mormon Clerk. This is a sad history of the discrimination of Mormons in the State of Idaho. He was the last Judge approved under the Ford Administration. Carter was gaining in the polls and the Democrats did not want any more appointees but this appointment slipped under the wire.
I believe Judge Callister changed the anti-Mormon feeling in the Idaho Federal Judicial System. Part on that change occurred in a most unique way. The “Courts” had a coed softball team which played in the City League. They were terrible but enjoyed drinking beer, swearing, whining etc. during the games. One day Judge Callister took me aside and suggested we try to integrate more with the employees thereby having a good influence on them. He suggested I join the team (he knew I was a very good baseball player) and he would come as a spectator and be supportive. I hit three home runs the first game and they one for the first time in several years. They were impressed and the feeling improved dramatically. We were now part of them. Note: They still drank, didn’t improve much but it paved the way for great relationships which exist to this day.
J: How long were you in Idaho?
S: We arrived in Boise in August of 1976 and lived there until June of 1987 when we moved to Provo. On arriving our next door neighbor Lynn immediately said, “If the Blacks ever get the Priesthood, maybe I would think about joining the Mormon Church, but you Mormons don’t know about Blacks”. I told her my experience in Watts and she immediately apologized. I explained one of my best students was shot and killed for a “Bobby Seals” leather jacket. I was not intimidated at all by her or anyone else to talk about the problems. I have been there.
J: Was there prejudice towards Judge Callister, because he was a Mormon Judge? Did they assume he was prejudiced?
S: Initially yes. The so called “Equal Rights Case” was in the national news every day. Sonja Johnson the excommunicated Mormon and the national feminist groups were opposed to Judge Callister sitting on the Equal Rights case. The issue was whether a state legislature which had ratified the so called ERA Amendment could repeal the legislative decision. If so the ERA Amendment would not have two thirds of the States required for passage. There were 3 state that wanted to repeal, Idaho and Arizona were included. Idaho and Arizona had initially ratified on first blush but recognizing the impact and wanted to repeal or decertify. Judge McNichols the Senior Judge, wanted the case which was filed in Idaho. I believe he wanted to make new law. Judge Callister did not want the case. The cases are assigned by a draw and Judge Callister drew the case. Judge Callister was one of two Mormon Federal District Judges in the US and he drew the case. If you do not think the Lord has a hand in the affairs of his children on the earth then review the history of this case and you will never doubt again. (Judge Christiansen and Judge Wallace (0th Circuit) were the other Mormon Judges) We worked closely with the FBI because they informed us a woman’s groups in Pennsylvania had raised $800,000 dollars for what the FBI termed, a hit on the Judge. The US Marshals office increased security dramatically. They were interesting times.
Judge Callister was criticized for not understanding women’s issues. Judge Callister had 12 kids. 11 of them girls and they all loved him and thought he was a great father. He wrote a great opinion based on jurisdictional issues and the fury and emotion were dissipated. The case went public the day it was filed with the Clerks office, December 23 at 4:59 just before Christmas. A few days later the Judge, Dave Thomas and I were at lunch and the Judge mentioned Ellen Goodman nationally syndicated writer and anti-Mormon said the next day in the newspaper, Judge Callister, to show his disdain for women and for all of American, filed this decision on Joseph Smith’s birthday. Just an interesting insight, since we were totally unaware of this coincidence.
TETON DAM FAILURE
J: Did you personally work on a case that made a difference?
S: The Teton Dam failure. The failure of the Teton Dam north of Wilford and Rexburg, Idaho, made national news. The Corp of Engineers built the dam and the agreement after the failure was the Federal Government would compensate all claimants, but would not admit any liability, in other words, the government would replace the property that had been lost, but they would not admit liability thus the Federal Government could not be sued. The Idaho Statesman, an anti-Mormon newspaper at the time, determined they were going to sue the Secretary of Interior, who had built the dam, for all information and names of all claimants and claims. Their rational for the suit was very clear. They wanted to know every claim of every claimant, down to a pencil. Their intention was to publish lists of claimants in the newspaper with itemized lists of each claim. These list would have been very divisive in the community. There was little law or precedent to rule either way. In time it appeared the best decision was to rule against the Idaho Statesman. My responsibility was to review the BLM procedures to see if they were in compliance. I went through their whole procedure. What they were doing. Exactly how they were doing it.
J: What were you trying to do?
S: We were trying not to allow The Idaho Statesman, to discover and publish all files of property claimed. What they wanted was to go through every file, list the name of the claimant and all claims.
One afternoon Judge Callister was sitting under his favorite painting, a Frieberg of George Washington kneeling in prayer by his horse, and exclaimed, “We can’t win this can we?” I thought then answered, “I don’t know, but it will be a weak opinion.” He said,” Let’s look at this case from a different angle.” After a very long time of meditation with eyes closed he said, “ Why don’t we give this back to the Secretary of Interior. Let Andrus make this decision.” It was brilliant. Andrus wanted to run for Governor of Idaho. If Andrus made this decision against Eastern Idaho, he couldn’t carry Eastern Idaho. And that’s what we did. The Secretary decided not to pursue the opening of the claims. It forced Andrus to make the right decision. A decision that he should have made earlier but probably didn’t want to upset his friends at the Statesman. The decision was published in the ‘Federal Supplement.”
BIRTH OF CHILDREN
J: Did you like living in Boise?
S: Boise was a great place for us to start our family. Melissa was born in Anaheim (January 15, 1976) and Tyson (November 8, 1977), Brant (October 8, 1979) and Jessica (December 1, 19810 were born in St. Jude hospital in Boise. All the children were born with C-Sections. This was extremely difficult for Cindy and she nearly expired on more than one occasion.
As an example, Cindy called me at the Federal Building to explain she was bleeding badly. I never went home for lunch but this day I walked into the house as she called. We immediately went to the hospital and the placenta tore as we arrived and by the spirit of God a LDS doctor was at the hospital and immediately took Tyson in no more that 15 minutes from the time we pulled into the parking lot. After arrival I left to call Cindy’s mom (Blaine and Beth Hardy of Springville) and a few minutes later while on the elevator they were wheeling Tyson out in an incubator. I was shocked. Cindy lost much blood but was alive. For many hours Tyson had not moved, cried or turned. Dad asked me if I had given him a blessing. I replied no. We went down to the hospital on a cold, rainy night with our dark trench coats buttoned at the neck. When we got there Tyson was still not moving and we asked to give a blessing. The Nun asked who I was and was informed I was the “good Father.” During the blessing, Tyson started screaming and moving. It was a miracle and everybody in attendance knew it. So impressed was the Nun she declared the truth of the Catholic church, based on the blessing of the “good Father.” It was a miracle.
FAMILY IN BOISE, IDAHO
Our family thrived in Boise. They went to aerobics with Cindy, collected Garbage Pail Kids at the 7-ll, built a playhouse, Jessica climbed on the roof at 3 years of age, threw and collected candy at the bus stop, went to Wendy’s with Grandma, grew fruit and vegetables and entered them in the Eastern Idaho State Fair winning many ribbons, Jessica got a fish hook in her rear end and had to have surgery on the way home from Yellowstone, ran in fun runs winning prizes, Jessica leaned out the window and said to an older man, “Pick it up mister,” played at Grandpa’s horse pasture with “Chief” for hours on hours, played main man in the dark with Dad, played woodpecker, screw driver and did hand and feet lifts for hours, Tyson got lost in his own sleeping bag, hit rocks at the Boise River, skated, and snuck Halloween candy out of the store house.
Joe and Joanne Osier were our close neighbors and friends. Joanne got Cindy selling jewelry and many other products at the fair. We camped and went on many trips together.
All of our children swam in the city swim meets. They were members of the elite Plantation Swim Club. They all placed in the Championship meets winning many ribbons. Melissa held the Idaho State butterfly record for 8 and 9 year old’s for many years. I also took the children with me to girls camp. I was in charge of camp for several years. We lived in the Meridian 8th Ward, Meridian Stake and I was in two bishoprics during our stay in Boise. (For list of Church callings see my Palm Pilot)
I took the kids with me where ever I went. I took the boys and girls to girls camp in Garden Valley and took Melissa with the Boy Scouts to build “snow caves.” I just wanted to take advantage of the time with the kids.
One family Christmas tradition started in Boise. My Mother prepared a large cardboard display. (4’x 4’) with two matching pictures (a total of 24) covered. The idea was to guess which two pictures matched. You only had one turn alternating. Each time you would get a match you would be presented with a Christmas present. Both kids and adults loved the game and we still play it. Generally, it was the boys vs. the girls. We often read from Luke and when the children were young we had a rein action of the birth of Christ with costumes.
Dad filled a Box each Christmas with school supplies, small presents etc. We were excited to open the “box” to see what was in it and who got what. I have continued the tradition all the years of our marriage. Our box has had the same wrapping paper on it for 30 years. I shop all year to find special food, small gifts, interesting toys, etc. and a highlight of Christmas is the opening of the “box.”
MOVING TO PROVO, UT
J: Why did you leave to come to Provo?
S: We came for employment, a transfer. It was an exciting for us to move to Provo. When we were first married, as we were driving through Provo, (Cindy grew up in Springville and we were visiting her parents) Cindy said, “Someday we’re going to live up there”. She was pointing to the Indian Hills area. I didn’t think anything about it. I came house hunting alone the first time and Cindy told me to look “up there” before we made any decisions. In knew this was the neighborhood we were to move into but it appeared to be much more affluent than we could afford. The people were professional and well-read. We felt intimidating to move to this neighborhood and yet, I knew this was the place we were supposed to land. We looked at many houses in the neighborhood but when we saw Stubbs, FOR SALE BY OWNER sign and looked through the house I knew this was the house.
BUYING HOUSE ON QUAIL RUN
J: Cindy didn’t see the house before you bought it?
S: Cindy came to Provo approved the house then we had to negotiate before we could seal the deal. I worked on the numbers all night and the next morning we had a contract. We moved in June of 1987. Two week before we moved Cindy asked about “Chiasmus.” Two weeks later in Sunday School Jack Welch was teaching Chiasmus which he had discovered. We could have been intimidated but we decided if we were out going and had a good attitude we would fit in nicely. This has been a great place for us to grow, expand, and develop.
It’s such an open ward. Supportive and not gossipy. You feel like you can be yourself. Affluence does not get in the way, nor does competition. I think there are some people in our ward who do feel out of place but that is really their problem.
KOREAN MISSION PRESIDENT
J: Tell us about Korea?
S: We went through the Mission Presidents Training in the MTC. Prior to entering we had studied Korean with assigned teachers at the MTC. Brother Cho helped me with several short spiritual stories that I memorized which allowed me to land in Korea speaking Korean. I had several months to refresh my Korean. I interviewed all the missionaries during the first two weeks. The experiences and details of the Korea Seoul West Mission are documented in my mission journal, mission record and other writings regarding the mission.
Activities and events with the children in Korea included two parakeet birds Pabo [바보 (fool)] and Yobo [여 보 term of endearment for spouse (similar to honey)] given to us by Mark Peterson the Mission President in Pusan. We had many pets and they always died. (dogs, gold fish, cats) They kids manufactured many interesting games. They put up a hoop for basketball upstairs, played video games and often went to neighborhood stores to play games. We had a little store Kagae [가게] one block away where you could buy food. The kids were a novelty in the neighborhood but loved at the little store. On arrival in Korea Jessica was bitten by hundreds of mosquitoes which took months to overcome. One year we burnt bushels of leaves and anything else around on a small grill in our front yard.
The kids attended Seoul International School in Song Nam. They had to be driven nearly everywhere. The school was beautiful and the studies were very difficult. The drivers were first Brother Pak then Brother Kang. Everybody played in athletics at school or on the base. The boys played basketball and we all went to Pusan for their tournament games. They both played well and the team came in second. (Team name the Hawks) They played baseball and Brant hit a grant slam for the Giants. Jessica was on a T ball team, and Melissa played soccer. Tyson ran cross country.
Bruce and Audrey Grant lived in Korea, working for the military. They helped us get a pass allowing us on the base. (Yong San) We could not make purchases except at Burger King where we ate hundreds if not thousands of hamburgers. (Whoppers) We would often walk on base just to relax from the difficult environment and pressures of the Mission. One of my best memories is walking with Cindy during the day or night, raining or clear, hot or cold with the cicadas chirping. Hot Summer nights were so restful. Grants had parties, Ward outings, Cindy and Audrey became best friends. Later they also purchased a home near us in Provo.
CINDY SHOPPING IN KOREA
Every Christmas we would go shopping under the bus terminal and other the markets. (Nam Dae Moon [남 대문] or Tong Dae Moon [동대 문 ]) It became a tradition and was very enjoyable. One year we laid plastic layers of “bubbles” all through the house and as the kids ran down to see if Santa Claus came they would pop bubbles with each foot step they took. The boys and I took hot baths and would through hot water everywhere. We also visited the public bath houses which was a very interesting experience. We had lots of stares. The children often took the Subway or buses (crowded to capacity and then some) to various activities but the Van was the most common transportation.
Cindy was known as the shopping Queen of Korea. All the little shop owners in the markets knew her by sight.
Weekly she would drag large bags of clothing or other items home after shopping trips. She was also the designated General Authorities wives shopping contact. Some people came from Japan just to go shopping with Cindy. I enjoyed going with her when time allowed which was not often. She knew specialty shops for everything. She even shopped for the native Korean saints wives because she could bargain well thus getting a better price. The Koreans loved to bargain with her and in the markets would refer to me as her spouse. (Sometimes they would look into my face just to see up closely who she was married to)
The kids taught English and sold baseball cards to make spending money. While driving through the tunnels on Nam San, the kids became adapt at holding their breath until we would emerge on the other side.
TRIPS IN KOREA
We took several trips. Some with missionaries on special mission activities, school activities, Army base activities, Ward activities etc. We visited Buddist Temples in the South, went to Sorak San on the East Coast, Mollie Po beach with friends, climbing mountains, ski trip with the Ward, (I sang Millie Vanille songs all the way home so I could stay awake.) the DMZ, (Demilitarized Zone) etc.
We took Gamma Goblin shots every six month and all the missionary and family shots were administered by Cindy. She gave thousands of shots having never given one before Korea.
LIVING IN PROVO
J: What have you enjoyed about Provo?
S: Soon after moving to Provo and buying our home we decided to finish the basement. We did much of the remodeling ourselves. Some of the electric and other work was hired out to a student in the construction management program at BYU. It took six months to complete and Cindy did the layout for the project. We were very busy with raising children. All the children went to Edgemont Elementary and we were involved in soccer, baseball, plays, displays and other school programs. We all hiked and explored our new environment. Hiking to the caves in Littlerock Canyon, the Pines, Rock Canyon, and the so called “ravine” which runs from Timpview Drive to the back of our house. It is a deep and steep ‘ravine.’ It was interesting learning about Provo and American Fork Canyon, Mount Timp, Utah Lake and the Uintas.
We were very excited about our new home. (4080 N. Quail Run Dr. Provo, UT 84604) Our neighbor Brent Smith built the house in 1977 and we purchased it from the Stubbs. They were asking $180,000 for the home but it was a buyers market. After negotiation we paid the maximum we could afford $160,000. It was a bargain at the time. The home was immaculate but changes to Cindy’s style needed to be made and we slowly have made those changes. The house had partial red brick and white siding with a black roof. After remolding and finishing the basement it had 2 kitchens, 4 ½ baths, living room, big family room, laundry room, sewing room, storage room, 7 bedrooms which were also used for offices, and a TV room downstairs. It was our ’dream house.’ It had a basement and was a two story above ground. Approximately 5200 square feet.
We immediately began to enhance the landscaping on the outside. We planted many trees. ( quaken aspen, lindon, maple, pine and some fruit trees)
While the move was difficult because the kids left their friends in Boise they adjusted in time. We had a trampoline in the back yard and they were free to roam. Our home was on the side of a mountain directly up Quail Valley from Timpview High School.
They kids wanted a pet so Melissa and I saw an add in the newspaper selling kittens. We picked out a little Birman Siamese kitten with four white feet. We named it ‘Snowshoe.’ It was a joy to be around, very energetic and loyal to the family. Jessica took care of our neighbors cats and brought a kitten home and Snowshoe hated the cat. Snowshoe wanted the Snow Family turf to himself. We had a home in the window well by Melissa’s bedroom for him in the winter and he lived until 2002. He was fourteen years old when he died. Cindy and I both cried, the kids were not at home at the time. Brant and Tyson would jump with it on the trampoline and Jessica and Melissa loved to sleep with it but it was still an outside cat.
UTAH COUNTY MOUNTAINS
The mountains and Provo Canyon have been a source of recreation for out family. On several occasions we have camped at Timpanogas campground. Sometimes in the fall when the leaves were falling (literally at the time of our camp) we would build a fire (in designated area) and burn leaves for hours. Often times we just camped.
EXPLORING SOUTHERN UTAH
Tyson got our family interested in Southern Utah and as a result we have been on trips to St. George, Moab, and all the National Parks, National Monuments, National Recreation, areas and all the State Parks. Tyson rode 100 miles in a rode race on a bike in Moab. He has camped and hiked much of Southern Utah.
During a three year period in the late 90’s I explored most of Southern Utah. It was a wonderful time to be alone in God’s nature. I walked Bryce Canyon at midnight on a full moon, looked at Monument Valley from Mauley Point, pink sand dunes near Kanab, and all the parks.
Cindy, Brant, Jessica and I took a float trip down the Colorado. We drove to Moab and floated Catarack Canyon on pontoon boats. It was hot, fun and exciting. Jessica fell of the boat and into the Colorado River losing her camera. We took out at Hite Bridge on Lake Powell and flew in a small plane back to Moab and drove home. It was a four day trip.
This trip was equally exciting as our family float trip down the main Salmon. A group of family floaters from Boise put in at Corn Creek. We floated several days with little or no problems, swimming, playing on the beaches running rapids. At Bath Campground Tyson rolled down to the river in his sleeping bag and was nearly in the river by morning. The biggest incident occurred as we were in Split Rock Rapid. ( class 3) I couldn’t see Split Rock until we were 10 feet away and had to pull hard to the right in order not to wrap around the rock. In doing so, Cindy fell out of the raft grabbing Brant and pulling him out also. Cindy soon surfaced but we couldn’t see Brant. My life flashed before me and the fear of losing Brant caused me to dive into the rapid to look for him, when I observed a life jacket floating empty in front of the boat. Brant was 6 or 7 years old. Eventually Brant bobbed to the surface and I got him ashore. Meanwhile, Melissa (age 10) took the raft through the rapid and got to shore. The floating life jacket that caused so much concern was a spare jacket that Brant was sitting on and when Cindy pulled him into the river it went with him. My prayers were answered and the rest of the trip was uneventful. Our safety rule was all children must have a life jacket (class 5) on at all time except when sleeping and all adults must have on a jacket at all times while in the rafts. These trips take several days and we pack all food and supplies, and haul out everything including human waste.
Cindy and I floated several time down the Middle Fork of the Salmon River, one of the premiere rivers in the world. She flipped in a raft and was under water a long time. Her legacy is falling out of boats or flipping in them. I floated the Selway river twice and the Payette River, South Fork of the Boise, Snake all while living in Boise.
Brant and I floated the Green River with Greg Baum and family. After moving to Provo. We also floated the Provo River in rafts and inner tubes from the Deer Creek Dam to the Murdock Dam.
HOBBIES AND COLLECTIBLES
As a young boy I loved playing marbles and played “keepsees.” In time I had bushels of marbles. I still love marbles. I also collected baseball cards and really enjoyed finding hard to get cards in antique stores or through the want ads. I actually sold one set of cards to help pay for our mission. My favorite was a mint 1954 Topps set. Another hobby was collecting red glass and dishes. This has been an enjoyable past time.
I started playing racquetball at BYU in 1987 and developed a group that played nearly every day at noon. In time we played doubles and became quite proficient. In 2000 Dave Black my doubles partner and I won the BYU Doubles Open Championship and in 2002 we came in 2nd. This was quite a feat for an old man like myself playing against former BYU racquetball players. ( Reese Hansen, Robert, JC, and Ron Taylor, Dave Black, Lothaire Bluth were the consistent group) I monitored my activity monthly and enjoyed the hours of physical activity.
The physical activity helped with my diabetes which developed while serving a mission in Korea. The diabetes causes my feet to hurt and the hiking, racquetball and other activities ease the pain so I tried to stay active.
YOUNG MEN AND YOUNG WOMEN ACTIVITIES
Much of our outdoor activity revolved around church young women activities and scouting. In the early 90’s we were involved in back packing in the High Uintas. One of the most memorable trips was to Island Lake for a week. The scouts including Tyson and Brant jumped off cliffs into the lake below and we hiked to many different lakes. Tyson actually planned the trip as part of the Varsity Team responsibilities. Other trips to Moose Head Lake and Mirror Lake were wonderful.
We took the youth to Antimony, UT for a youth conference. I remember watching Tyson and Melissa ride calves and getting bucked off. It made me nervous but they were having fun. One night Brant and I stood under the stars and commented on how bright and close they seemed.
Several years in a row we took the scouts to Zion’s National Park and hiked the Subway and Narrows. These trips lasted one week and the hikes were spectacular. Both hikes are down rivers with the narrow walls being several hundred feet straight up. We also took the Laurels down the Subway.
One morning I arose and took all the children (except Melissa) to Arches National Park. Tyson had become very interested in Arches and on this particular day it was snowing in the park. Just a handful of people were there and the snow against the red rock was beautiful. We also took a trip to Goblin Valley with John Prince, (Melissa’s husband), Melissa and Joshua our first grandchild. These are the type of activities I used to try to keep the kids in touch with their Dad. Many times I had no energy and did not want to go but thought better of it to stay close to the children. Note: even when they married.
TRIPS WITH FAMILY
Of the many trips to California (Death Valley, Sequoia National Park, Disneyland, Beaches in Southern California, San Diego, and BYU football games) the most difficult was coming home from San Francisco. Cindy flew home on an airplane and after she left during the middle of the night there was an earthquake which rattled the hotel. I got up loaded 4 little kids in the back of “old blue” our blue Mazda truck and headed home. Kids were crying, diapers needed changing, they were all sick and the trip was miserable. Cindy had a nice quiet flight home.
After we were married and Melissa was born we took a trip from Southern California to Boise. (one of many) We would leave after work and drive all night. On this particular trip I stopped in Lovelock NV at 2:00AM to get gas. We were driving our yellow pickup and Cindy and Melissa who was nursing were in the back asleep. After getting the gas I drove into Oregon and started to hear Melissa crying. I yelled at Cindy but no answer. Finally I stopped looked in the back and no Cindy. I thought she had fallen out. My next thought was she had gotten out at Lovelock and I had left her at the gas station. It was now 6:00AM. I drove to Lovelock listening to our nursing Melissa cry and upon arriving there was Cindy sitting in the gas station in her robe and hair in a bun, no money. I had to get gas again at the same station. This is the correct version of this story although her version differs. This was a very long trip to Boise.
U.S. TRIP WITH KIDS-GREAT FUN
During the Summer of 1994 I took the kids on a three week trip around the US. The purpose was (1) visit all Church sites, (2) visit historical sites, (3) visit battle ground sites, (4) visit baseball sites, (5) visit all tourist traps North of the Mason Dixon Line. We accomplished our goals. Melissa made a packet with each town, river, site, history and we studied the information while we drove to the sites. The total cost of the trip was $2900. We rode in the White Van and prior to leaving I bought $400 worth of food and packed it. We left Provo at 3:00 AM and drove to Lincoln, Nebraska arriving at 10:00, staying at Days Inn. We followed the Mormon trail and stopped at North Platt to view the river. We stayed in Keokuk for a few days visiting Adam-on-Diamon, Nauvoo, Cartage Jail. We found land that Anson Call owned that was sold for $2.50 at a tax sale after they were forced out of Nauvoo. We visited Hannibal and St. Louis, MO, rode to the top of the ARCH, saw Busch Stadium, stopped in Louisville to buy baseball bats at the factory, visited the Kentucky Derby Hall of Fame and Church Hills Downs, studied all rivers and history of the States to Washington, DC, stopping in West Virginia, Shenandoah and Blue Ridge Mountains to work on Jessica’s school report on West Virginia. Visited all sites in Washington DC, (Washington Monument, White House, Capital Bldg. Washington Mall and all monuments, statutes, and walls, Smithsonian Institutes, Supreme Court, Library of Congress etc.) the Statute of Liberty, ( the kids climbed to the top) Boston, (Plymouth Rock, Freedom Trail, Salem , Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Rhode Island, Connecticut) and all the Church sites in up state New York. (Palymra, Sacred Grove, Hill Commorah, even the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown and the Finger Lakes. We watched the full moon come over Niagara Falls. We stopped at Kirtland, Ohio, Illinois, Iowa, and bought fire works in Wyoming on the return trip. Again, we visited every where. We crossed the Mississippi into Davenport, IA, while the Mississippi was at flood stage.
J: When you came to the ward what was your first clue that maybe you would be called as Bishop?
S: I never thought I’d be called as Bishop. It was the dread of my life, it is intimidating to be the Bishop in this ward. My callings have been with the youth. We came to Provo in June of ‘87 and went to Korea in July of ‘89 and came back in July of ‘92.
MISSION PRESIDENTS CALL
J: Can you remember what your feelings when you got the Mission Presidents call?
S: Some people asked, “Were you a Stake President”? “No”. “Were you a Regional Representative”? “No”. “Were you a Bishop”? “No”. “Were you a counselor”? “No”. “What was your calling when you were called to be a Mission President”? “I was the Assistant to the Assistant to the Priesthood Advisor”. Kirk Waldron was the President and Kirk Hart was the main instructor and I helped Kirk Hart.
The call came as a result of several events. I received a call from Elder Perry’s office stating he wanted to visit our family the next day. I thought the call was from Bill Perry a college roommate and friend living in Salt Lake City. Elder Perry arrived with his wife and we had all the kids lined up, dressed up and hair combed. He avoided us but asked the kids, if we read the scriptures, had Family Home Evening, where we were in the Book of Mormon and about family prayer. Fortunately, we were doing most of those important activities at the time. After some discussion with Cindy and I he said not to read anything into his visit he was just checking on several items and they left.
Weeks later we were called to Salt Lake City by Elder Ballard. He went through the same conversation but gave a clue as to the Mission calling and potentially a Korea language call. He noted, “If President Monson calls you to this calling, act surprised.” Later we were called by President Monson, and were set apart by Elder Oaks in Salt Lake City with our family and extended family present.
J: How did they know to call you?
S: I do not know for sure but President Palmer probably spoke to President Hinckley about potential candidates.
J: After you got home and settled in–how long it before you were called as Bishop?
S: 3 1/2 years.
J: Then what were you doing in the church when you came back?
S: I was the Teachers Quorum advisor.
J: So there was no clue at all that you were being considered for Bishop?
S: First of all I can’t emphasize how much I did not want to be Bishop in the Edgemont 14th ward. It’s a challenge, but it’s a challenge anywhere.
COMMENT ON WOMEN
J: One of the things that I appreciate about you is your support for women who stay at home to raise the family but you are also supportive of single Mothers who must work outside the home to support their families. The women in our Ward think you have always been very supportive of your own wife and that you can relate to women and this is something that I think is very, very important in a Bishop.
S: Thanks for your endorsement but adulation is poison. But thank you anyway.
CALLING AS BISHOP
J: Tell us about being called as Bishop?
S: David Fuehrer was the 1st Counselor, Gordon Thomas the 2nd (I had only seen Gordon one time before the call and couldn’t remember what he looked like), Don Andrews was the Ward Clerk and Gary Lundberg was the Executive Secretary. Don was released to be a Bishop, Gordon to be a Mission President and Dave for another call. Bob Beckstead was called as Ward Clerk, Dave Groesbeck as 1st Counselor and Greg Baum as 2nd Counselor. Brent Smith was also the Executive Secretary. Our biggest challenge was handling 5 pedophile cases involving hundreds of young men across the West. Only one case was in this Ward and it is well documented, and the day we discovered the action which been going on for years changed all our lives. We spent day and night for four years trying to located, counsel and pass judgment on the predators.
We also sent out 100 missionaries having 55 out at one time and 65 members of the Ward served outside the Ward at BYU, the Edgemont Stake, MTC or UVSC. We held 3 farewells on one Sunday several times and two many times. Procuring the finances of $375 per month for 55 missionaries, you figure the dollar amount, over $20,000 per month.
J: Your philosophy seems to be, call great people, give them the responsibility and let them do their calling with enthusiasm.
S: I think that is accurate. I think prayer, inspiration, and wisdom play an important part.
J: We have an awful lot of women who didn’t get the education they needed in order to support themselves and they’ve been left as widows or with children–divorce or whatever. You don’t want to encourage women to work outside the home so…?
S: I think it is important for women to be educated. Women should want to be educated and have opportunity. Education can enhance life.
J: I’ve seen too many women who’ve had to end up in 7-11, late at night when they should be home.
S: Cindy believes that if you’re concerned about being at home with the family, there are ways to accomplish the situation. It’s education. Computers and other high tech developments will help. I feel we need to be able to take care of ourselves in times of tragedy. I believe the young women need to be as highly educated as the young men do.
SNOW FAMILY MISSION STATEMENT
SNOW FAMILY MISSION STATEMENT
Bruce M. Snow
History: In 1994 I started to prepare a mission statement for our family which I hoped would be adopted by unanimous consent after draft and review by all member of our family.
PURPOSE OF FAMILY: LIVE, LOVE, LEARN, LEAVE A LEGACY.
FAMILY VALUES: LIVING, LOVING, LEARNING, LEAVING A LEGACY.
FUTURE OF FAMILY: LIVED, LOVED, LEARNED, LEFT A LEGACY.
Reflections on the Family Mission Statement include:
Greatest Impact for Good, Combine End and Means, Timeless, Family Destination, Prioritize Family, Creation of a Vision, Stay on Course, Make Course Corrections, Deep Meaning, Principles, Leadership, Children, Share a Common Vision.
As you review and think about the statement consider all the ramifications which I will briefly examine. We have a pioneer legacy set in the lofty mountains where we have dwelt most of our lives. We appreciate our environment and have tried to make our camp clean and beautiful. We understand circles-endless, eternal, circling the wagons for safety, prayer circles-temple, cirques-deep mountain meadows, computer loops, let us gather in family and kneel in family prayer-circles, the meaning of life, these are a very few of the obvious feeling and innuendos of circles.
Mountains are lofty, high vistas, pointing the way to God, elevated, above the plain, rugged, visionary and treacherous. To successfully ascent requires team work, patience, silence, work ethic, choosing the correct path, hardship, planning, preparation, equipment, judgment, mapping, marking for others to follow in the correct path, confidence, enduring, organization etc. These traits do not even begin to describe the thoughts and pondering of the Family Statement and are only meant to help you think about the deep meaning of the Statement.
CIRCLE AT THE SUMMIT
I have spoken about the jobs and work I did as a youth. In College (Utah State 1964) I worked in the men’s dressing room handing out athletic cloths. At Boise Jr. College (1965) I drove a school bus for the Boise School District. At BYU (1968-71) I worked in the men’s dressing room similar to Utah State.
After graduation I worked for LA Unified School District.(1972) (Watts) Coached and taught in Placentia Unified School District in Yorba Linda, CA. (1971-1976) Then clerked for the US District Court in Idaho (1976-1978), after which I have worked for the LDS Foundation to the present time. I started as a field representative in Boise (1978-1987) then moved to Provo to be the Assistant to the Dean of the Law School in charge of fund raising.
As a field representative I worked at closing large charitable trusts mostly of farm land and other types of charitable donations in Eastern Idaho and Western Oregon and Washington. I reported to the Central Office in Provo and it was a wonderful job.
At the law school (1987-1989 then Korean Mission 1989-1992 and back to the law school 1992-1999) I worked with Dean Bruce Hafen and Dean Reese Hansen who was a close friend.
My biggest accomplishments at the law school were funding fourteen professorships, one chair and funding and building the law library addition with all furnishings. This was a great accomplishment for me because we were in uncharted waters in regard to fundraising at the law school and at the university.
In July of 1999 I was asked to be the Executive Director-LDS Foundation. This position included BYU Provo, BYU Hawaii and also a Director of the LDS Foundation. Some accomplishments since I took this position. Created and implemented the “Donor Inclination Model”, Presidents Leadership Council, BYU Annual Fund, Major Gift Managers, telefund to BYU, Knight Society, new donor clearance model (DSRC),University Development Council, funded the Barlow Building (8 Million) in Washington DC, both sports athletic buildings,(55 Million) (indoor practice facility and athletic complex) Joseph F. Smith Building, (77 Million)
Miller Park (8 Million), finished the Lee Library (54 Million), started the Mountain West Development Conference, funded two super computers, closed PACE gift (313 million), mentored student programs and much more that is recorded in another record.