Bruce Douglas Porter|
Sept. 18, 1952 ~ Dec. 28, 2016
Bruce Douglas Porter, loving husband, father, grandfather, and brother, passed away peacefully at home on Wednesday, December 28th surrounded by his family. He fell ill in Moscow, Russia while serving as president of the Europe East Area of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
He lived a full and active life despite many health challenges incidental to kidney failure almost twenty years ago. The guiding stars in his life were love of family and of the gospel of Jesus Christ. He was happiest when enjoying time with his wife, children, and grandchildren.
Bruce was born on September 18, 1952 in Albuquerque, New Mexico to Lyle Kay Porter and Wilma Holmes. The family grew to include four sisters, Rebecca Rogers (Gary), Pamela Hamblin (Randy), Carolyn Brustad (Roger), and Susan Grenfell. From gospel discussions with his father, Bruce developed a deep love of the scriptures. His mother encouraged Bruce, a natural bookworm, to participate in basketball, music, and a variety of school activities.
Bruce entered BYU as a David O. McKay scholar majoring in history and was the editor of Monday Magazine. His mission to Dusseldorf Germany deepened his testimony; Presidents Kindt and Poecker sparked his interest in spreading the gospel to Russia. He then began studying Russian at BYU which instilled in him a love for the peoples of Eastern Europe and launched him into a career in international politics.
After graduation, Bruce spent the summer of 1976 studying in St. Petersburg. He continued his education at Harvard University, earning a MS degree in Soviet Studies and a PhD in political science.
He married his eternal sweetheart, Susan Elizabeth Holland, whom he met at BYU, in the Washington D.C Temple on February 2, 1977. He was a devoted and loving husband throughout their almost forty years of marriage. They enjoyed a rich life together raising their family while living in Massachusetts, Germany, Virginia, and Utah. They were blessed with four children: David (Karen), Chris (Crystal), Lisa Brooks (Shawn), and Jennifer Anderson (Rhett). Bruce was a kind mentor, teacher, playmate, counselor, and friend to his children, who remember fondly playing word strategy games, wrestling after work, and talking one-on-one in the living room.
His career in political science spanned government, business, and academia, including time at the Senate Armed Services Committee, the Board for International Broadcasting, the Northrup Corporation, and BYU. An accomplished writer, Bruce authored numerous articles and books, including "War and the Rise of the State" and "King of Kings."
In April 1995, Bruce was called into full-time church service as a member of the Quorum of the Seventy in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints--a calling to which he dedicated the rest of his life. Bruce served in Eastern Europe (1995-1997 and 2014-2016), on the Middle East Africa North desk, and in other headquarters assignments.
Bruce is survived by his wife, Susan, their four children and spouses, eleven grandchildren, and four sisters. He was preceded in death by his parents.
Funeral services will be held at 11:00am on Thursday, January 5th at the Bountiful Utah Central Stake Center on 640 South 750 East in Bountiful. Viewings will be held on Wednesday, January 4th from 6:00-8:00pm at Larkin Mortuary on 260 E. South Temple in Salt Lake City and on Thursday, January 5th from 9:00-10:20am before the service. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to LDS Charities or to the Church's General Missionary Fund.
Published in Deseret News on Jan. 1, 2017