Vai's View: Never a Dull moment general conference weekend brings reunion of missionaries, convert

Published: Friday, April 6 2012 1:00 p.m. MDT

Vantage Control was so impressed, they hired Daniel for other projects, and he soon became a full-time employee. He quickly realized his skill set was unique and that he was one of very few people in the world who could install these elaborate programs. Soon, he was jetting all over the country installing these systems and making a handsome living in the process. He went to Atlanta to install Elton John's Georgia penthouse apartment, actor Danny Glover's, San Francisco for Barry Bonds', Bruce Willis and Demi Moore's home, NFL Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Fouts' home in San Diego, Junior Seau, rapper MC Hammer's $30 million mansion in Oakland that was later repossessed, Oklahoma oil billionaire T. Boone Pickens, Gulf Stream Jets owner Alan Poulson, the Air and Space Smithsonian in Washington, D.C., the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Hollywood Park racetrack and former NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle's home. As time passed, the programs were constantly upgraded and improved, so that any task that could be controlled by computer would be automated to a central keypad. That meant the opening and closing of drapes, TVs, temperature of the home, ceiling fans, even the oven, could all be controlled at the touch of a finger from a pad. For Rozelle, whom Daniel says was basically computer illiterate, he set up a central control panel for a bank of TV wall monitors that he could easily control from his Captain Kirk chair as he watched NFL games. Rozelle was so happy and appreciative, he invited Daniel and his family to be his guests at the Super Bowl one year. Of course, the irony is, I played in the NFL but never reached the Super Bowl; my non-athletic former missionary companion not only went to the Super Bowl, he sat in the commissioner's suite! Daniel isn't really a sports fan, so when I asked which Super Bowl he attended, all he remembers is that it was in Tampa and Michael Jackson was the halftime entertainment. We laughed long and hard over that.

What really matters is what Daniel Pray has done with his life. He's been happily married to Jacqulyn for 27 years and they've raised three of the most wonderful and outstanding children in the world. His local church leaders recognized what we knew as missionaries and Vantage Control learned of him as an employer: that Daniel Pray is brilliant, has integrity and is dependable. So, for 24 consecutive years — since his mid-20s, Daniel has been a clerk, at the ward or stake level. He's currently the auditor for the Logandale Nevada Stake in Overton, Nev., where he lives. It's been the only church calling he's ever had in his adult life and he loves it. In fact, he told me that the reason he couldn't come last year to our MTC fireside was because he was doing audits — tending quietly and without fanfare to his church calling.

But this year he came and we told our amazing story to the MTC missionaries of finding, teaching and baptizing Bob Dull, the incredible blessing the gospel has been to us, the Dulls, their children and grandchildren who have been born under the covenant.

It was truly a memorable conference weekend.

Try out the new DeseretNews.com design!
try beta learn more
Get The Deseret News Everywhere