Ravell Call, Deseret News
To see Kirby Heyborne’s eyes light up, just ask him about his calling as Cubmaster in his Latter-day Saint ward.
“I’m going on four years now and we’ve got a pack meeting tonight,” the 34-year-old said with animation. “Some people dread it, but I love it. I love the kids. Every pack meeting, it’s just me up in front, being myself, having a fun time. We do the cheers and everything. I like the improv aspect of it.”
Entertaining the Cub Scouts was just one of several topics the actor-musician-comedian with shaggy blond hair discussed in a recent one-on-one interview with Mormon Times.
Heyborne is most commonly recognized for having starred or costarred in LDS-themed films such as “The Singles Ward,” “The R.M.,” “The Best Two Years” and “Saints and Soldiers.” The Sandy, Utah, native has spent the past eight years living with his family in Los Angeles. When he isn’t going to an audition or appearing in a film, Heyborne is usually at home, narrating an audio book, pruning rose bushes or spending quality time with his family.
Last month, Heyborne traveled to Northern Utah for a concert at Nibley City Heritage Days. Mormon Times was invited to meet with Heyborne at his hotel after the concert at 11 p.m. or at 9 a.m. the next day. When asked about it, he said, “I'm all hopped up so I have a hard time going to sleep. I’m funniest at 11.”
Nevertheless, Heyborne was just as engaging the next morning when he talked about his youth, his love of music, his faith as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, his family and his career, before driving to the Salt Lake City airport for a return trip to Los Angeles.
Two role models
Growing up, Heyborne said there were two men who had a tremendous influence on his early life — his father, Bruce, and Ron Smart, his Young Men leader who later became his bishop.
As the third of five children, Heyborne came to appreciate his father’s good example and dry sense of humor.
“He was so funny growing up, a happy guy. I had such a happy childhood. He was laid-back, and I liked that and it influenced me,” he said.
Among memorable Scout camps and good leaders, Heyborne said Smart helped him to understand the gospel and gain a testimony.
“He’s an amazing man,” Heyborne said of Smart, who later served as a mission president in Oregon. “I remember his lessons on the Atonement when I was a priest. He helped me understand as much as I could as a 16-year-old boy about what the Atonement meant.”
When asked about Heyborne, Smart was just as complimentary. He spoke highly of Heyborne during his teenage years, recalling his leadership ability, his self-confidence, his pleasant sense of humor, his stage presence, his humility and a unique talent for making others feel special. The student-body president of Alta High School also consistently bore his testimony each month at fast and testimony meeting.
“Girls would do anything to go on a date with him, but would go out of his way to be nice to the girls who maybe weren’t the prettiest,” Smart said. “He was a talented kid, always a standout, but he was a friend to everybody and made sure all were included.”
The Dominican Republic
In his fictional movie roles, Heyborne served missions in Boise, Wyoming and Holland. In reality, he served in the Dominican Republic. What does he remember most about his best two years?
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