June M. Morris
April 27, 1931 -
July 23, 2021
June M. Morris, one of Utah's most successful businesswomen, died peacefully, at home on July 23, 2021 at the age of 90, surrounded by loved ones. June is best known as the founder of Morris Air and Morris Travel, two of Utah's most well-known business entities of the 1990's.
Lorna June Mayer was born in Manti April 27, 1931 at the height of the depression to James Peter and Loy Maylett Mayer. She grew up on the family farm in Sanpete County but, during the winter, the family would move to nearby Redmond, to attend school. When she was 12, her mother moved the family to Salt Lake where she attended Bryant Jr. and graduated from West High in 1948.
June married Robert W. (Bob) Frendt in 1948 and they had one child, son Richard W. (Rick) Frendt in 1950. It was also at this time that June began a career in the travel industry and discovered her passion. Bob and June divorced in 1962.
She married G. Mitchell (Mitch) Morris in 1969 and, after a few weeks as a housewife, decided it was time for her to go back to work. Mitch, a business owner and entrepreneur, encouraged her to open her own travel agency, Morris Travel, which she did the same year. When the one person business began to grow, June's first employee was her sister Dorothy. Her son Rick worked part time while finishing college and joined the firm full time in 1978.
June was a caring albeit "tough" boss and was loved by her co-workers. With her natural people skills and an eye for talent, the firm continued to grow and prosper. She assembled an incredible team of smart, hard-working and innovative people. Together they expanded the company and even began chartering aircraft in 1984 which eventually led to the formation of her airline, Morris Air.
When June sold the travel agency, Morris Travel, in 1990, the company had over 500 employees, was the largest in Utah, and the 16th largest agency in the US. She then focused all of her attention to Morris Air, which continued to thrive, and in December 1992 was sold to Southwest Airlines. At the time of the sale, June was the only female CEO of a major airline, as Morris Air had become one of the ten largest in the country. The company had the newest fleet in the industry, with 21 Boeing 737-300 jets, serving 20 cities in the Western United States.
Because she was such a successful woman in a traditionally man's world in the 1980's and 1990's, June received an incredible amount of attention and hundreds of awards, both locally and nationally, throughout her career. More importantly, she was an inspiration to a new generation of young female entrepreneurs.
Although best known as a businesswoman, it was June's family that brought her the greatest joy. She was a loving mother, aunt, grandmother, great grandmother, and friend. She is survived by sons Richard W. Frendt and wife Claudia, David M. Morris and wife Mindy, daughter Sara Morris Munyon & Husband Dan, grandchildren Zenia June Frendt, Robert H. Frendt, Richard W. Frendt Jr, Chase M. Morris & Wife Ilse, Cayman D. Frendt and wife Tyleene, Jeremy Jones and wife Lindsey, Travis Jones and wife Oaklee, Skyler Jones and wife Katie, Brighton Jones, Brooke A. Munyon, Nolan M. Munyon and great-grandchildren Teagan June Frendt, Zarina I. Frendt, Zia M. Frendt, Elora C. Frendt, Meghan June Morris, Jeremiah Jones, Grayson Jones, Alexander Jones, Isabelle Jones, Noah Jones, Crew Jones, Griffin Jones, Phoenix Jones, Falcon Jones, Otis Jones and Birdie Jones.
June lost her supportive partner and loving husband, Mitch, in 2011 and she was the last of the Mayer family, having been preceded in death by her brother Frank J. Mayer and sisters Katheryn M. Whitney, Verda Hansen and Dorothy M. Hadden.
Funeral services and Interment was held July 31, 2021 at Wasatch Lawn Memorial Park.
Published by The Salt Lake Tribune from Jul. 27 to Aug. 1, 2021.