It was one hundred years ago that a sweet baby boy came into this world in the desert land of Nevada.
This baby boy would one day become the father to Mr. Kerry, and a beloved father-in-law to me.
I can think of few men who I have loved and admired more than this man. He made me feel welcome the moment he met me. He assured me that Kerry and I were made for each other, despite the fact that we grew up on opposite ends of the country.
We visited his birthplace in Preston, Nevada this summer. I was struck by its barrenness, and how his mother must have felt looking out at the desert as they welcomed another baby into what would become a family of twelve children. I found some sunflowers that were blooming close to where the house of his birth would have stood, and even found a cow posing just for us.
How appropriate, since Orson William Lauritzen was a dairy farmer, and a CPA.
He would have eleven children of his own. And, like my own father, did his best to raise a good family by setting the example of a Godly man. He was one of the most righteous men I've ever known.
His grandfather, Peder, was the original one who joined the LDS Church in Denmark, and would emigrate to the United States. Upon reaching Winter Quarters (near Omaha, NE), he would continue to lead his family on by joining with the handcart companies who walked to the Salt Lake Valley. They eventually would settle in Sanpete Valley in central Utah.
Kerry bears a strong resemblance to his father, as does our oldest son Peter. I often told Peter that if he lived long enough, I would know exactly he would look like as an older man. Sadly, that won't happen.
So, I wish a happy heavenly birthday to Orson...the man who taught Kerry and his brothers how to treat women with the utmost respect. He did it by counseling them, and by setting the example.
Love you, Orson!
Son, Peter...son of Kerry...son of Orson...son of Peter...son of Peder
|Orson William Lauritzen|
|Orson's parents; Peter Lauritzen and Mary Loanna Terry|
|Orson Lauritzen - probably in his early 20s|
|Peder Lauritzen, father of Peter, grandfather of Orson. He originally joined the church in Denmark and walked across the plains with the handcart companies.|
|Orson's father, Peter.|
|Kerry, looking a lot like his father.|
|Kerry, looking like his father.|
|Our son, Peter|