"The outside of a horse is good for the inside of a man."
Edison J. Stephens, 94, of Henefer, Utah, passed away Saturday, August 17, 2013 in Ogden, Utah. He was born November 17, 1918 in Henefer to Parley R. and Elthera Fawcett Stephens. He married his high school sweetheart, Beulah Bond on June 16, 1939 in the Salt Lake Temple. She passed away on June 25, 1984. On December 21, 1985 he married Erika Rudolph in the Salt Lake Temple, she passed away on July 18, 2008.
He graduated from North Summit High School and attended Utah State University. Dad served as Bishop of the Henefer Ward and in the Summit Stake Presidency, as well as other numerous church callings. He and Erika served an LDS mission to San Antonio, Texas and together they served as temple workers in the Ogden Temple. Dad served in the Utah House of Representatives and in the Utah Senate. He was Deputy Commissioner of Agriculture and chairman of the Utah Horse Racing Commission, as well as many other state and local committees. He received the American Cowboy Heritage Award, North Summit's "Brave to the Bone", and Utah Farm Bureau's Friend of Agriculture awards. He was a member of the Henefer Pony Express and took great pride in raising and running exceptional quarter horses. Dad loved to hunt and just be around his horses. He was a lifelong farmer on the Rafter E Ranch, loved to play his harmonica and support his grandkids activities. He was a true "gentleman's cowboy" and he would tell you his greatest accomplishment was his family.
He is survived by his children: Marsha (Ralph) Crittenden, son-in-law, Doug Toole, Dee (Kathryn) Stephens, Kyle (Joanne) Stephens, Launa (Blaine) Blonquist, Lori (Tim) Gines, and Becky (Todd) Thurston, 23 grandchildren, 61 great grandchildren and 11 great-great grandchildren; 4 stepchildren: Ursula, Angelika, Roland, Pete and their families; one sister, Colleen Kormos.
He was preceded in death by his parents; spouses, Beulah Bond (Mom) and Erika Rudolph; daughter, Saundra Toole; sisters, Velma Judd and LaVon Parry; one great grandson, Brigg Gines.
A viewing will be held Wednesday, August 21, 2013 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Henefer LDS Church. Funeral services will be held at noon, Thursday, August 22, 2013 in the Henefer Church with a viewing from 10 to 11:30 a.m. prior to the services. Interment will be held at the Henefer Cemetery.
The family wishes to thank all of the medical staff and caregivers who have taken care of Dad. A special thanks also to the North Summit Ambulance crew. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the LDS Missionary Fund.