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Lena (Ipson) Wilson

August 28, 1931 ~ December 8, 2018 (age 87)

Lena Ipson Wilson was born August 28, 1931 as the 12th child to Sarah Ann Church and Parley Ipson in Panguitch, Utah. She was the fourth child born to them within one year! (all three of the triplets who preceded her died in infancy)

Lena was a master storyteller. She had a natural ability control the pace and timber of her voice, it’s inflections and volumes, and perfected the pregnant pause. She eschewed written notes and frequently spoke extemporaneously. Perhaps her most famous presentation was on the Life of Betsy Ross and how George Washington asked Betsy to create a flag for the new country. Lena dressed in a long old-fashioned dress, wore a bonnet and sat in a rocking chair while telling her story. She included a handout to show how easy it is to create a perfect 5-point star with a single cut. For many years the American flag displayed at the Wilson home in Pleasant Grove has been the original Betsy Ross design with 13 stars and 13 stripes.

Lena loved her country and was always active in civic affairs. She concluded her 1949 Valedictorian’s Address at Panguitch High School with this paragraph:

There are two little letters in the alphabet, which have for us a double significance. They are “U” and “S”. Of course, we know that they stand for the United States, or for Uncle Sam, as some are wont to say. But I like to think that these letters have another significance; that they spell a word—a little word; a word that means the entire country as well as it’s humblest citizens. And this little word is my closing thought tonight. Just as “U.S.” stands for the United States, the United States stands for “US”—all of us!

She served as a Judge of Elections for many years. She never missed the opportunity, or responsibility as she would say, to vote in any election.

Lena dedicated her life to her family and her church. She reported that she had many happy memories of her childhood including learning to cook and sew from her mother. She married Rex J Wilson, the love of her life, on June 8, 1949 in the St. George Temple. They had two sons, Rex Wayne (Cecilia), and Thomas Boyd (TediAnn), and one daughter, Cindy Jane. They have six grandchildren and eleven great-grandchildren. Rex died on March 15, 2004 which was a major landmark in her life; she missed him so much and while she always remained upbeat and optimistic, there was a visible burden that she bore. Her hobbies included quilting (blue ribbon winners at fairs), baking (her orange rolls and pies were amazing), and reading (historical novels were her favorite). She served several years on the Pleasant Grove Fair committee and was a member of the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers, serving as the first President of the “Utah Timp Valley Company” when it was organized.

She served in many Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints leadership positions at both ward and stake levels. She and Rex served a full time Family History Mission in the Joseph Smith Memorial Building. They also served for 15 years as ordinance workers in the Provo and Timpanogos Temples. Lena had a firm testimony that the Gospel is true and that Jesus Christ is her Savior.

The family wishes to thank Jason Hatch and his family for all the support they have provided as Lena has declined these past few years. There were always there at the drop of a hat. Be it plumbing issues or a haircut. We also want to thank Dr. Sean Doyle. DO for his excellent and professional care, Jen from Dignity Hospice, Beehive Assisted Living in American Fork, especially Carrie Brown, RN, and Palliative Hospice care for their work easing Lena’s end-of-life. Finally, but certainly not least, all the members of the local Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ward. During Lena’s life, she was always making meals for and visiting sick ward members; she was more than amply rewarded for her service to the community these past few years. Thank you all!

An evening viewing will be held Friday, December 14 from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. in the Olpin Family Mortuary Chapel, 494 South 300 East, Pleasant Grove, Utah.

Funeral services will be held Saturday, December 15 at 11:00 a.m. in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints chapel located at 1106 East 200 South, in Pleasant Grove. where family and friends may attend a viewing from 9:40 - 10:40 a.m. prior to the services. Interment will be next to Rex in the Pleasant Grove City Cemetery.  Condolences may be sent to the family at www.olpinmortuary.com.

In lieu of flowers Lena suggested a donation to Primary Children’s Hospital, the LDS Missionary fund or a charity of your choice.

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