Monday, May 31, 2010

A MEMORIAL DAY TRIBUTE

Pearl Rex-Hartzell was my Mom's cousin. She died March 24 at age 93. She didn't serve in the military in the traditional way. But she served her country in politics, helping military families and loosing 1 son in military service.
Here is some of her story, taken from her obituary.
  In her 93rd year Pearl Teenie Bullock Rex-Hartzell passed peacefully through the veil to be with our father, Robert R. Rex and two sons, Norman Dale Rex and Robert Alan Rex. She passed away on May 24, 2010. .Mom was born August 19, 1917 in a small log home five miles from Lonetree, WY to Evan Molbourne Bullock and Teenie Maliniemi Bullock. Her father died from a ranching accident when she was 10. She spent her childhood in the majestic foothills of the Uinta Mountains, Evanston, WY and Randolph, UT. Pearl graduated from South Rich High school where she met Robert R. Rex, whom she later married in 1935 in the Salt Lake LDS Temple. She studied Art at Utah State University and the University of Utah. Mom and Dad raised 11 children in their Randolph home. They boarded school teachers for many years. The homeless and abused also found shelter there. Mom and Dad operated the Triangle Bar Ranch near Randolph, raising sheep, horses, dairy cows and beef cattle at various times. Mom enjoyed over 20 years representing Rich County as a news reporter for the Uinta County Herald and Deseret News. Mom and Dad owned and operated the Country Inn Cafe & Hotel in Randolph, noted for home cooking, pies and cinnamon rolls. Mom also operated an insurance agency in Rich County for several years. In 1982 they sold the ranch and moved to Utah County in part so Mom could nurse and care for Dad as his health began to fail. He died in 1985. . In 1992 Mom married Emerson Hartzell of Orem, UT.  . Pearl and Emerson enjoyed 14 years of companionship together.
Their honeymoon was a trip to Houston, TX where Mom was a delegate to the National Republican Presidential Nominating Convention in 1992. They soon attracted the attention of the national press as, at the age of 75, they danced each evening at various balls. Emerson died in 2006. One of Mom's lifelong passions was dancing; she started dancing as a youth in Lonetree and continued until just five weeks before she passed. Never one to cherish idle moments or to leave her opinion unspoken, Mom was always active in church, community and politics. She had a remarkable love of God, Country and Family, and she dedicated her life in service to people. Converted to the LDS Church at the age of 16, she served in a variety of callings. Her specialty was working with the youth and, later in life, with the elderly. She became a champion of abused and forgotten children, the wives and mothers of fallen soldiers, the lonely and shut-in and more, either by direct involvement or through the numerous boards and committees on which she served. She served 25 years as the Utah & Western Regional Coordinator for The Families of POW/MIA in Southeast Asia (Vietnam). That service culminated in the 1996 location and repatriation of son, Capt. Robert Alan's remains from his jet-bomber's 1968 crash site on a lonely jungle mountainside in Laos. Of particular recent note is her service to the Utah County Children's Justice Center and as a member of the Board of the Utah Division of Aging and Adult Services. She shook the hands of three U.S. Presidents, their First Ladies, and a British Prime Minister and influenced the outcome of numerous local political races. Her clarion call is that we all be actively involved in the political process to help ensure the continuance of our liberties and to be active in improving the communities in which we live. Mom was but 5 foot 2 inches tall yet none of us ever looked upon her as small or diminutive. She was a giant in our lives and set a high standard for ALL of us to follow.
I first met Pearl some time after her marriage to Emerson, at a Bullock family reunion. She loved her family and her heritage.

Pearl telling a story from Bullock history.

R-L Emerson, Pearl, granddaughter, Anne Marie(also now deceased), Ronald.

HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY TO ALL THOSE WHO LOST THEIR LIVES IN SERVICE TO OUR COUNTRY! And to those who have given loved ones to help make our country a safe place to live!!

1 comment:

Jenny said...

amen.
nice post.