Owen D. West, Jr.9/11/31 ~ 11/27/04 Beloved husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother, leader, servant of the Lord, and friend who blessed the lives of literally thousands, Owen Daniel West, Jr. passed away in Salt Lake City, Utah from Cardiac Amyloidosis, a rare bone marrow disorder, on November 27, 2004. Owen was born September 11, 1931 to Owen Daniel West and Eva Pearl Stice in Brooklyn, New York. He married his sweetheart Geraldine on December 23, 1953 in the Idaho Falls temple. They lived modestly, enabling them to share of their abundance with others. Last year, they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary marking 50 glorious years of being one in purpose. He has now been reunited with his lovely Geraldine who passed away unexpectedly just 50 days prior to his death. Stalwart and true to the teachings of the Savior, Owen served his family and fellowman all the days of his life. A faithful husband and dedicated father, he loved, supported and sustained his family as he guided them in the path of truth and righteousness. An avid scriptorian, daily scripture study gave him a wealth of knowledge from which to draw. Frequent inspired counsel and encouragement were appreciated by each of his children, who called him their "Hero." He promoted family success with a strong work ethic – saying, "The harder you work, the luckier you'll get!" Owen received his B.S. in Business from the University of Colorado in 1956 and his MBA from the University of Denver in 1963. He was a Vice President with the Continental Illinois National Bank and Trust Company of Chicago, working as a trust investment advisor from 1963 through 1991. He was instrumental in the development and marketing of the successful Short-Term Asset Management product which provided large consistent profits for the bank. Owen was without guile and was known for his keen discernment. A favorite business Owenism - "It's another day to excel!" He was a 1st lieutenant with the US Army Corps of Engineers; on active duty from 1956 until 1958, and on reserve duty until 1962. Owen was a pillar of strength as a pioneer of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Chicago, Illinois area. His visionary leadership helped to build not only churches, stakes, welfare farms and the Chicago Temple, but also helped to develop a strong base of church leadership that will carry on the Lord's work in the Chicago area. Owen has served in various capacities in the church for over 50 years, including many years as a tenor in ward, stake and temple choirs. Most recently, Owen's callings have included: Sealer in the Chicago Illinois Temple; North America Central Family History Advisor, Chicago Illinois Temple Presidency, Utah Ogden Mission President 1991-1994, Schaumburg Illinois Stake President, 10 years; Counselor in Wilmette Illinois Stake Presidency, four years, Bishop of Northwest 1st Ward, six years; Chicago Illinois Temple Committee Member; Missionary in the Northwestern States Mission. Always a missionary, Owen used every opportunity to share the gospel message of hope and his love for the Savior. From hospital corridors to the grocery store, his testimony of the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ was boldly proclaimed to one and all. His enthusiasm for missionary and family history work was contagious. Pass-along and Family Search cards were shared with all. Missionary Owenism – "How are you, President West?" "Never better!" Owen was a life long supporter of the Boy Scouts of America. He always exemplified the scout law, was honest, did good turns and was known for being prepared. As a youth, he embraced scouting as he received the Eagle Scout award, followed by Bronze, Gold & Silver Eagle Palms. He worked at scout camps and continued to share his love of scouting with young men as he served throughout his life as an adult leader. He served as the V.P. of Finance on the executive board of the Northwest Suburban Council. Owen received numerous BSA awards including Woodbadge, the Good Scout Award, and the Silver Beaver. Owen loved to climb mountains. He was always setting his sights upwards and encouraging others to do the same. He had a wonderful ability to bring out the best in others. While serving as Bishop and Stake President, he took large groups of youth to the tops of the mountains, strengthening testimonies every step of the way. Faithful, courageous, and true to the end, his optimism and cheerful outlook never wavered. A dutiful and noble servant, Owen leaves behind a loving family: his children - Owen Daniel (Doreen) West III of Arlington Heights, Illinois; Celestia Anne (Doug) Himstreet of Bountiful, Utah; Melinda Ruth (Ken) Baugh of Cupertino, California; and Brian David (Ginny) West of Worthington, Massachusetts; 15 grandchildren and two great-grand-children; brothers, James (Maria) West, Donald (Pat) West and sister Anne West. Funeral Services will be held December 4, 2004 at 11:00 a.m. at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Mueller Park Stake Center, 1800 East Mueller Park Road, Bountiful, Utah. Visitation will be held December 3, 2004 from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. at Larkin Mortuary, 260 East South Temple, Salt Lake City, Utah. Visitation will also be held prior to the funeral from 9:00 – 10:30 a.m. Interment will be at the Pleasant Grove Cemetery, in Pleasant Grove, Utah. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be given to the Amyloid Research Fund, Boston University School of Medicine, 715 Albany Street, K503, Boston, MA, 02118-2526 (For more information call 617-638-4317). The family wishes to express special thanks for the professional care of Dr. Don Doty, Dr. Dale Renlund and the Heart Failure Team, LDS Hospital's ER, CCU, W7 nursing staff, and also to Dr. Martha Skinner and team of Boston, MA; Dr. Stone, Dr. Waligora, and Dr. Kaminer and their respective staffs of Glenview, IL all who rendered selfless service prolonging his life and enabling him to complete his life story, family histories and to record father's blessings to each of his posterity.
Published in Deseret News from Dec. 2 to Dec. 3, 2004.