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Obituary: HANKS, MARION

Published: Wednesday, Oct. 1 2014 1:07 a.m. MDT

Marion Duff Hanks died August 5, 2011 at the age of 89, in Salt Lake City, Utah, of causes incident to age.Elder Marion D. Hanks was one of the great souls born to this earth. He lived his life by the teachings in the Holy Scriptures, with which he was intimately acquainted and which he loved so deeply, and taught as no other. He was a teacher, a scholar, a defender, a great intellect, and a servant, but above all, he was a man of God. Elder Hanks was born into poverty but was unfailingly generous with his time, money and spirit to all who needed him. He was fatherless from his babyhood, but was a mentor, counselor, protector, leader and father to innumerable others. He believed the words of the Savior and chose the weightier matters of life judgment, mercy, and faith. He felt that he personally needed to feed the hungry, take in the stranger, clothe the naked, defend the defenseless, and comfort those who mourned. He loved his family and was kind and courtly, courteous and generous to everyone he met. Elder Hanks was commanding and charismatic. He was an advisor to five Presidents of the United States, serving on the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, beginning with Dwight D. Eisenhower. He was a local, national and international leader of many organizations including Rotary, Ouelessebougou Alliance, Enterprise Mentors, Boy Scouts of America, Salvation Army, Utah Boys Ranch, Salt Lake Cancer Society, Sons of the Utah Pioneers, and numerous others. Elder Hanks was a consummate community bridge builder. He spent many years on the Board of Trustees for Brigham Young University. He possessed a strong mind with a deep capacity for language and thought. He was serious from his childhood. He resisted the proud. Elder Hanks succeeded in many arenas, but the focus of his life was the Kingdom of God and all of God's children. Elder Hanks was born October 13, 1921 in Salt Lake City to Stanley A. and Maude Frame Hanks. He was married to Maxine Lehua Christensen in the Hawaii Temple in 1949. They are the parents of five children. He graduated from the University of Utah Law School, served an LDS mission to the Northern States Mission, and served in the U.S. Navy in the Pacific during World War II. At the age of 31, Elder Hanks was called by President David O. McKay to serve as a General Authority for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He spent the next 40 years serving others across the earth with Maxine. He served as a member of the Presidency of the Seventy on three occasions, as an Assistant to the Quorum of the Twelve, as a Mission President in London, England, Area President/Supervisor in Hong Kong, the Pacific Isles, Central Utah, South America, and the Atlantic Northeast Areas, editor of the New Era Magazine, Director of the Correlation Committee, Military Relations and Chaplains, The Priesthood Department, and President of the Salt Lake Temple, to name but a few. He traveled on multiple occasions to Vietnam, during that war, in order to comfort and meet with LDS servicemen. He would stay up late into the night dictating letters to the servicemen's families that he had visited. In Asia, he was the catalyst for the creation of the refugee programs for the Church in Thailand and the Philippines. Elder Hanks influenced the lives of thousands of students as a teacher of the Book of Mormon in Seminary and Institute classes for many years. He was always willing to say 'yes' to one more request and filled innumerable speaking assignments. He loved the Temple, and was beloved by all who worked with him there. He was a gifted athlete who loved sports and excelled in basketball, handball and squash. He loved his country deeply. He also loved literature and books and would often quote long passages of Shakespeare. He loved to chop wood, shovel snow, move rocks in the stream at Aspen Grove, and occasionally go home to the Hawaiian Islands with Maxine. His wife and partner in all things, Maxine, has taken care of Duff throughout his long illness with devotion, passion, and love. His five children love and honor him and are so grateful to have had such a kind, wise and remarkable father who gave each of them the gift of unconditional love. Elder Marion Duff Hanks is survived by his wife, Maxine and their five children: Susan (Paul) Maughan, Nancy (John) Baird, Ann (Spencer) Clawson, Mary (Chris) Clifford, Richard (Liz) Hanks, 23 grandchildren, and 38 great-grandchildren. His parents, brothers: Lincoln and Bruce, and sisters: Jeanette, Maurine, Beulah and Maude May all preceded him in death. Elder Hanks' family would like to thank the many friends who continued to visit him, some of whom could scarce afford the time, and the caregivers who loved and respected him and treated him with such kindness, respect and compassion. Funeral Services will be held Saturday, August 13, 2011 at 11:00 a.m. at the Holladay So. Stake Center, 4917 Viewmont St., Salt Lake City. Visitation will be held Friday August 12, 2011 from 6:00-8:00 p.m. and Saturday, August 13th, 2011 from 9:00-10:30 a.m., also at the Holladay So. Stake Center. Interment at Wasatch Lawn Memorial Park (3401 Highland Dr, Salt Lake City). In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Marion D. and Maxine C. Hanks Humanitarian Foundation, P.O. Box 9672, Salt Lake City, Utah 84109.