Chapter 22, BYU
Lorna went to BYU during the 1970-1971 school year.
She met and dated a young man toward the end of her freshman year. They became serious, he was going on a mission, he didn’t want her at BYU while he was gone. Respecting his wishes, she didn’t register for the fall semester of 1971. Instead, she stayed home in Pasco, Washington. As it turned out, he served just a few months before returning home. Lorna never heard from him again.
She returned to BYU and enrolled in classes for Winter 1972. She attended for a short period of time, the school experience wasn’t the same. She withdrew and returned to Pasco. She found a job and started working.
In the Spring of 1972 she met a young man named Tom. Magic happened.
Tom was not a member of the Church. He agreed to have the missionary discussions. Lorna pleaded with the missionaries not to bring up his being baptized during the first discussion, knowing if they did, Tom wouldn’t continue investigating the Church.
In those years, it was policy to discuss an investigator’s baptism during the first discussion, then set a date for that person’s baptism.
Tom met with the missionaries. During the discussion they suggested a baptismal date for him. As Lorna feared, Tom was through meeting with the missionaries and investigating the Church. Lorna was heart-broken.
Tom was moving at the end of summer to Arizona to go to school. He wanted Lorna to come with him, they could live together.
She was brought face to face with one of her life’s defining moments. Moving and living with Tom in Arizona, or staying true to what she had been taught and believed her whole life. She broke up with him. Years later I found out she cried everyday for three months after breaking up with him.
Lorna had a sister Penny, and her husband Russ living in Seattle. She left Pasco and moved to Seattle in September of 1972. She started working for an accounting firm and attended the singles ward at the University of Washington.
Meeting in Seattle
In September of 1972 I decided to withdraw from my classes at the University of Utah and spend a few months in Seattle, Washington.
I served a mission in the Pacific Northwest from August 1967 to August 1969. I spent about eighteen months in the greater Seattle area. I made arrangements to live with a family in Seattle I had become close to as a missionary.
The only singles ward in Seattle at the time met at the Church Institute Building at the University of Washington. It was one of the areas I served towards the end of my mission.
I arrived a few minutes late for church. I stood in the back looking over the congregation to see if I recognized anyone from my time there as a missionary. As I was looking, I noticed a young woman sitting on the second row, second seat in. In my mind I heard, “She’s the reason you came to Seattle.” The young woman was Lorna.
There were a few students in the ward that I knew when I was a missionary. One was Carl Bell, now in Medical School. He wanted to double date. I told him that I didn’t know anyone well enough to ask. He asked if there was someone I would like to get to know, if so, he would set it up. I had seen him talking to Lorna, so I pointed her out and said I would like to meet her. He set Lorna and me up.
Our first date was October 27, 1972. For Lorna, it was a blind date. For me, I knew who I would be picking up.
She told me later, that when we met for the first time, there was something “familiar” about me.
We were married in the Salt Lake Temple February 2nd, 1973. A little over 3 months later.