Some important events in Elder Robert D. Hales’ life:
Aug. 24, 1932 — Born Robert Dean Hales in New York City to John Rulon and Vera Marie Holbrook Hales. He was their third and last child.
1950 — Graduated from Great Neck (N.Y.) High School.
June 10, 1953 — Married Mary Elene Crandall in the Salt Lake Temple.
1954 — Received bachelor's degree in business administration and communications from the University of Utah.
1954-58 — Lived in Florida as an Air Force jet fighter pilot. During this time his and his wife's two sons were born.
1956 — Sustained as president of the Albany (Georgia) Branch.
1960 — Received master of business administration degree from the Harvard Business School. At the same time he served as elders quorum president.
1960 — Joined the Gillette Co.
Jan. 8, 1961 — Sustained as president of the Wayland Branch, New England Mission.
1961 — Sustained as president of the Weston (Massachusetts) Branch. Sustained as bishop when Weston Ward was organized on May 20, 1962.
Sept. 22, 1963 — Sustained to the Boston Stake High Council.
Sept. 20, 1964 — Sustained as second counselor in the Boston Stake presidency.
Sept. 4, 1966 — Sustained to the London (England) Stake high council.
June 2, 1968 — Sustained as president of the Frankfurt American Branch.
Oct. 30, 1968 — Sustained as bishop of the Frankfurt (Germany) Ward.
January 1969 — Named general manager of Gillette in Spain.
1969 — Sustained as first counselor in the branch presidency of the Seville (Spain) Branch.
January 1970 — Appointed president of Papermate, a division of the Gillette Co.
April 26, 1970 — Sustained as bishop of the North Shore (Chicago) Ward.
September 1970 — Called as a regional representative to the Minnesota and Louisiana regions.
September 1971 — Named corporate vice president of Max Factor & Co.
April 4, 1975 — Sustained as an Assistant to the Twelve.
April 5, 1975 — Gave first general conference address, on the topic of agency.
Oct. 1, 1976 — Sustained to the First Quorum of the Seventy.
1978-79 — Served as president of the England London Mission.
1979 — Assigned as area supervisor in Europe, where he worked closely with Elder Thomas S. Monson of the Quorum of the Twelve.
July 1981 — Became first counselor in the Sunday School General Presidency. Served until July 1985.
April 6, 1985 — Sustained as presiding bishop.
July 1987 — Appointed to State Board of Regents.
April 2, 1994 — Sustained to the Quorum of the Twelve, where he filled a vacancy left by the death of Elder Marvin J. Ashton.
April 7, 1994 — Ordained an apostle.
June 10, 1994 — Received honorary doctorate of humane letters from University of Utah and gave commencement address.
Feb. 7, 2002 — Carried the Olympic torch to the Church Administration Building before the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.
Aug. 14, 2003 — Received honorary doctorate of Christian service from Brigham Young University and gave commencement address.
June 2010 — His first book, "Return: Four Phases of Our Mortal Journey Home," was published.
August 2010 — Attended the National Boy Scout Jamboree in Fort A.P. Hill, Virginia.
2011 — Missed speaking during the April general conference because of health reasons, but was present and spoke at the October conference.Comment on this story
April 5, 2015 — At general conference, spoke on protecting religious freedoms in a year that witnessed important religious freedom legislation passed in Utah.
June 26, 2015 — Spoke at the 2015 Seminar for New Mission Presidents, along with his wife, Sister Mary Hales, about how faith and obedience protect missionaries from the adversary.
April 1, 2017 — At general conference, spoke on becoming a disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ.
July 2017 — Received the Pioneers of Progress President's Award, sponsored by the Days of '47, Inc.
October 1, 2017 — Died at age 85, passing away peacefully at the hospital, surrounded by his wife and family.