Melvin Cottam Fish
1933 - 2019
June 18, 1933 ~
January 26, 2019
Passed away peacefully surrounded by his family after a short battle with pancreatic cancer. He is survived by his wife, Gwena of more than 60 years, 10 children, 51 grandchildren and 37 great grandchildren. He is a beloved husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather and dear friend. He was greatly loved as a math teacher at East High in Salt Lake City, Utah.
He was born in Pioche, Nevada and raised in Toquerville, Utah. He served his country in the Army stationed in Germany during the Korean War. Then he served for 3 years as the first missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Taiwan.
Dad enjoyed learning new things his whole life. He earned his Bachelor degree at BYU, Master's degree at LSU,and his Doctorate at George Wythe University.
We will miss his faith promoting stories, fun sense of humor, his laugh and most of all how kind he was to everyone. He will be missed but never forgotten!
Services will be held on Saturday, February 2, 2019 at the LDS Chapel located at 14650 S. 3200 W. Bluffdale, UT 84065. The viewing will be from 9:00-10:45am, and the funeral following at 11:00am. Interment, Utah Veterans Cemetery (Camp Williams).
To plant trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published by Deseret News on Jan. 27, 2019.
9:00a.m. - 10:45a.m.
LDS Chapel
14650 S. 3200 W., Bluffdale, UT
LDS Chapel
14650 S. 3200 W., Bluffdale, UT
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29 Entries
Lovely man needs to b a treasure in heaven for all of you and us... Anytime u need anything from us pls call 414 630 [email protected]
Michael curro group her and there
Michael Curro
January 26, 2021
Mr. Fish was an awesome teacher! I had him for Algebra at East High School. The principals he taught, and the way he taught them helped me learn to love math! I loved his stories he shared during class. He will be missed, but not forgotten!
Mark McNabb
June 13, 2020
Hello my friend. I still think of you almost every day. Though I never got to meet you in this lifetime I know were kindred spirits. I emailed you a few days before you passed away to see if you could mentor me or have a good chat. I knew when I found out about your passing that there was a reason for the timing and I was to learn for myself and carry on this important work. If there is anyone who would like to share their experience and time with Melvin with me please reach out 214-293-2692 You are always remembered my friend and the great work and service to others is remarkable. The fruit of your love and work lives on forever.
N Jones
January 21, 2020
I just found out about Melvin's passing today, a year after he left us. I am very sad because the man that I considered my mentor, teacher and friend is gone from us. I cannot repay all the help, teaching and love that Dr. Fish and Gwena have imparted to us and our family. I will greatly miss our talks and insights that he has imparted to me. I have read all his books, listened to his seminars and feel that my life has been truly blessed by his mission. I would like to keep in touch with you Gwena. Where are you staying now? May God's peace be with you. I truly feel that Melvin is with the Good Shepard.I remain faithfully your brother in Christ. Bob Macdonald 828-0440.
Bob Macdonald
January 18, 2020
I just found out about Mr. Fish's passing. I speak of him often. I was struggling with math in middle school. He was my freshman math teacher. Thanks to his explanations of difficult math concepts, I finally started to understand and then began to excel in math. In college, I took math for fun. He had a huge impact on my life and many others! He was one of my favorite teachers. He will be missed!
Janna B
November 8, 2019
Melvin along with Thomas Nielson introduced the gospel to my wife, Kuo Mei Hsiang, in Tainan, Taiwan early in 1958. Tom said that was the 1st house they got into in Tainan. We saw Melvin in Taipei in 2006 during the 50 year celebration. We live in Spring, TX. [email protected]
June 8, 2019
We just found out about the passing of Melvin. We are so sorry to hear. He was the best neighbor anyone could have. We loved him dearly.
LeRoy Turano
March 24, 2019
I never met Melvin in person, we only ever spoke on the phone. No matter, because he was always willing to use his great spiritual gifts to help me and my family, over the phone. He made my life so much better! He never once even spoke of charging me. Melvin always made me feel like we were simply old friends. I am truly sorry for the loss of my friend. Gwen, you have been in my thoughts and prayers ever since I received the shocking news that Melvin was so sick. May you and your dear family be blessed to be comforted at this time. We will all meet again.
Connie Waterman
February 23, 2019
Gwenna We were so shocked, but the years have gone by! Mel is in the best place and free from the problems in this life. As we have gotten older we miss seeing our friends and loose touch! God will bless you and comfort you. We wish you and youre family the best!
Richard Lundgreen
February 21, 2019
Gwena and family, I was saddened to hear of Melvins passing. Although I didn't know you well, I know you were an amazing "team" and helped, loved and served so many; including my Mom and my family.My thoughts and prayers are with you. May you find peace and comfort. Collette Clove
Collette Clove
February 3, 2019
My Grandma Wilma, wanted me send her thoughts and prayers out to you Wendy and your family. Tiff and I attended the service today, it was beautiful. Thanks Mel for all you've done for me and the great example you were to all of us. We will miss you !! One of the most noble and amazing men I've ever had the privilege to learn from. My heart goes out to you Wendy and your family and to Sam and Alexis. I can relate with losing a Dad and a Grandpa, and its hard to comprehend for me. I'm sorry for this time of loss. He will truly be missed. His laughing off challenges, his service to his Wife, his love to his Kids and Grandkids and to anyone that needed or wanted help, he was there. A living Angel we was and will continue to be... I'm confident he's preparing the way on the otherside now getting ready for the rest of his loved ones to transtion all in Divine time. I'm sure he's in a better place. His Glory will be easy to find, he'll be one of the brightest to find. I am glad he is out of pain and suffering and that now he is surrounded by former loved ones and the reunion is probably beyond description and very joyful. It was nice to see and talk with some of you there today...., your family is very strong and strengthened and in a great place thanks to Melvin and Gwena being such great examples. Let's all make each day a little brighter when we face our challenges and just think,...What would Mel do? We'll be able to make it thru.... Thanks Mel!!
Tyson M.
February 2, 2019
May the God of all comfort strengthen the family in this time of deep sorrow, those who pass on, God keeps in his memory because they are precious in his eyes. My sincerest condolences. Psalms 116:15
February 1, 2019
Mark Bradford
January 31, 2019
I first met Mel and Gwena when they moved in down the street from us in Cedar City. Mel and Gwena are both two of the most loving, sincere and Godly people who represented their LDS faith. He was a great man who will never be forgotten. Michele Daly
Michele Daly
January 31, 2019
I've never met someone like Mel before, and don't expect to ever again. Someone where the feeling of love and kindness emanated from him to fill the room. It was near tangible. Despite the world being darker without him in it, it is a much brighter place because of his having been in it at all.
Michael Nielsen
January 31, 2019
A truly great man. I am a better person because I know Mel & Gwena. He is a marvelous teacher who helped me discover many hidden treasures of wisdom & knowledge.
c. howie rossman II
January 31, 2019
a loved one
January 31, 2019
Oh my goodness, I was just thinking about Mel a few days ago and wondering about him, hadn't thought about him for years. It doesn't surprise me that he accomplished so much. I dated him for a short time way back when, very nice guy. Yes, he will be missed by many. Janice Reynolds Law
January 30, 2019
I am sorry at Melvin's passing. My love goes out to all of his family. It is always hard to lose of member of the family. I am Marilyn Fish MacLellan daughter of Hamilton M. Fish, son of John L. Fish, son of Joseph Fish and Mary Campbell Steele. Melvin and I come from Joseph , but different wives. Again, my love to all of you.
Marilyn Fish MacLellan
January 30, 2019
Many condolences to the family members . May the words of Jeremiah 29:11 strengthen all during this time of loss. Sincerely, Roberts.
January 30, 2019
I light this candle in the memory of Melvin and the great works he accomplished in his life alongside his wife Gwena that have helped countless lives and will continue endlessly. He continues his work in the spiritual realm with Father.

Though I never met Mel, my mother did about 15 years prior, he has touched my life deeply and has been an intricate part in helping me to understand my contract and Purpose in life. Ironically, I was born in Cedar and my family is from Parowan. My grandfather was also named Melvin and passed from Pancreatic Cancer as well in Parowan. I send my full Love to all of his family in this time. Though I never met him I think of Mel and Gwena as a friend.
Natalie Jones
January 29, 2019
Thank you for all you taught us! We love you Melvin and know you were much more needed in heaven! I love you and miss you very much!
Amber and Maddie Bowman
January 29, 2019
Melvin is my family member. He and Gwenna have had us in their home many times, and have come to our home many times. Teaching us to Love through the pure Love of Christ. We enjoyed listening to his many stories. I knew I could call on Mel and Gwenna when we were having tuff time's and they would always help us right away. Mel has blessed our family often. I was so crushed to learn of his cancer. I didn't want to bother him by calling. There is a huge hole in my heart.. I am missing my friend. To his 10 wonderful Children, You are so lucky to have such a Great Dad he talked of you often.. I will miss him every day.. God be with you until we meet again Mel. Thank you for your kindness and Love you gave all of us..
Dan and Beth Bowman
January 29, 2019
Almost half a century ago Mr. Fish saved me from drowning in algebra. We're talking F, as in flunking his course and possibly losing out on the engineering college and aviation future of my dreams.

In a private sit-down WE agreed I would go back to 'Day One' and re-accomplish EVERY sample and end-of-chapter problem in his course book in addition to all previously-assigned homework. He then volunteered his free time to correct my exhaustive work, accepting no errors.

Suddenly, it started to all make sense! When I reached the point where he'd given the class a comprehensive mid-term exam just a few weeks earlier one which I got little more than a few points for signing my name on he administered me a grueling backup exam. Thanks to his weeks of assistance and "cracking the whip", I finished the exam above the 95th percentile! The semester's few remaining weeks raced almost effortlessly by with me now totally understanding Mr. Fish's lessons, sometimes even working a few chapters ahead.

He told me I earned that solid A on my report card. I told him, no, WE did.

Now THAT's a teacher! Thanks, Mr. Fish.

- Lt. Colonel Rick Douglas, US Air Force Ret. (Pilot)
January 28, 2019
Mr. Fish was very good to us at East. I've thought of him many times over the years. I'm grateful to have known him.
Duncan Fisher
January 28, 2019
Rachel, Wes, and Family, Your dad was a good man and will be missed. We're thinking of you.
Karen Fishler
January 27, 2019
Mr. Fish was my Math teacher. He was so patient and friendly. He went out of his way to help everyone feel comfortable in what can be a challenging subject. Thanks for sharing him with so many of us!
L Hamilton
January 27, 2019
Gwena and 10 Children and all Fish Family. I am so sorry to hear about Melvin passing away. Melvin was a very nice man. I have been to Melvin and Gwena's home several times. Their family are my Cousin's. I will miss Melvin very much. At least is no longer suffering from Pancreatic Cancer. Melvin will be missed by so many people. I send my Sympathy's and Condolence's and Love to all of you at this sad time. May you all be comforted. Rest In Peace Melvin. Sorry I cant attend services live too far away.
Bruce Barton
January 27, 2019
I had Mr Fish for math my sophomore year at East. He was a very nice man and a great teacher. I'm sorry for your loss
Angie Leedy
January 27, 2019
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