Dr. O. Preston Robinson, a nationally known educator and newspaper publisher, was praised Tuesday at his funeral not only for his accomplishments in society - but for his unconditional compassion for his family, friends and fellow workers.
"Yes, he was a scholar. Yes, he was a business executive. Yes, he was an author and a publisher. Yes, he was prominent in civic affairs," said President Gordon B. Hinckley, first counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. "But when all the chips are down, the greatest shiny badge that Pres Robinson wore was the loyalty, and love and tender care of his companion."President Hinckley, brother-in-law to the late business executive, was one of several prominent church and civic leaders paying homage to Dr. Robinson in memorial services in the Murray 23rd LDS Ward Tuesday afternoon.
Dr. Robinson, former editor and general manager of the Deseret News, died Nov. 10, 1990, of cardiac arrest in St. Mark's Hospital. He suffered a heart attack while playing golf Nov. 1, and was taken to the hospital, where he remained in critical condition until his death. He was 87.
Tuesday, he was remembered as a man who lived every day to the fullest - a scholar, influential teacher, missionary, yet a meek and humble servant and dedicated father and husband who lovingly cared for his invalid wife, Christine Hinckley Robinson, for the past seven years.
"He loved her like I have never seen a man love and care for his wife. He set a new standard of nobility for every husband in our community in how to treat one's companion," said President Thomas S. Monson, second counselor in the church's First Presidency. "In life they were not divided and in death they will not be separated."
President Monson, noting that he felt as if he had lost a father, said he first met Dr. Robinson when he was one of his professors in the School of Business at the University of Utah.
Calling Dr. Robinson the "Pied Piper" of the business school, President Monson said, "He had the capacity to individualize his instructions. He would take us one by one and point us to the area of our greatest potential.
"A man who was always anxious to do the best in whatever work he was engaged," Dr. Robinson excelled as a church worker and a missionary, serving the church in France from 1924-27, and as president of the British Mission from 1964-67, President Monson said.
He talked of Dr. Robinson's "eye for quality" as an author, printer and publisher and praised his love of his grandchildren, children and his wife.
In remarks that brought both laughter and tears from the congregation, Dr. Robinson's three children echoed similar sentiments as they paid loving tribute to "Papa."
Despite his many achievements, Christine Carol Burton said her father often reminded his children, "There are only two things we take with us (to the other side). Our knowledge, which includes our testimony, and our relationships."
Everything else, her father told her, is "just window dressing."