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Sculptor responsible for Angel Moroni featured on most LDS temples dies at 84

Published: Saturday, Nov. 30 2013 9:10 p.m. MST

Karl Quilter working on a sculpture of the Angel Moroni, which is seen atop many of the LDS Church's temples. Quilter, 84, died Nov. 27, 2013 at his Salt Lake-area home. Photo from Quilter's family. (Courtesy Quilter Family) Karl Quilter working on a sculpture of the Angel Moroni, which is seen atop many of the LDS Church's temples. Quilter, 84, died Nov. 27, 2013 at his Salt Lake-area home. Photo from Quilter's family. (Courtesy Quilter Family)

SALT LAKE CITY — Karl Quilter, a Salt Lake City-based sculptor whose work tops most of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint temples, passed away Wednesday at the age of 84.

Quilter's rendering of the Angel Moroni tops more than 100 LDS temples, according to the Church's website. He also crafted many of the oxen featured in the temple baptismal fonts as well as the nativities seen at many temples during the Christmas season.

Quilter's daughter, Elizabeth Finlinson, said her father continued to sculpt until the time of his death. She said he died unexpectedly, but peacefully at his home. A father of eight children and grandfather and great-grandfather to more than 80, she said he was a great family man.

The Angel Moroni statue is placed on the Ogden Utah Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Tuesday, May 7, 2013.
 (Ravell Call, Deseret News) The Angel Moroni statue is placed on the Ogden Utah Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Tuesday, May 7, 2013. (Ravell Call, Deseret News)

"He would do anything for any of his kids," Finlinson said. "He spent his time trying to get to any grandkids' function whether it was a football game or band concert.

"We just adored him because he took such interest in our lives. We just all knew how much he cared for each one of us."

Quilter studied sculpture and industrial design at the University of Utah, where Finlinson said he experimented with casting sculptures in fiberglass. The lighter weight material made it far easier for the Moroni statues to be mounted atop the temples.

Quilter created three total designs which varied in size to fit various temples, according to the LDS Church website.

In addition to his sculpting work, Quilter worked as a seminary teacher and temple worker at the Salt Lake Temple.

An Angel Moroni statue created by Karl Quilter. Quilter, 84, died Nov. 27, 2013 at his Salt Lake-area home. (Courtesy Quilter Family) An Angel Moroni statue created by Karl Quilter. Quilter, 84, died Nov. 27, 2013 at his Salt Lake-area home. (Courtesy Quilter Family)

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