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Grace Sorensen Anderson passed away peacefully at her home in Bountiful, Utah on Tuesday afternoon, July 9, 2019 with her son and daughter-in-law by her side.
Grace was born in Tremonton, Utah on February 2, 1918 to Wilford Halverson Sorensen and Maude Genave Meldrum. She was the second of nine children. During the second year of her life her father purchased land in Marsh Center, Idaho and that is where she grew up. Growing up on a ranch Grace learned to work at an early age. Her older sister helped their mother with the household duties and Grace helped her father on the ranch. She milked thirty cows morning and night and helped with other work.
The school in Marsh Center had a large entryway for the students to leave their coats and lunches. There was one classroom for grades one through four and another for grades five through eight. Grace started school when she was five because she had difficulty speaking clearly. One of the school teachers boarded at her house and suggested that Grace start school early so her speech would improve. When Grace completed the sixth grade her teacher suggested she skip the seventh grade. That put her in the same grade as her older sister Wanda. They were always close and graduated from Arimo High School together when Grace was sixteen years old.
Grace remembered her years growing up as filled with love and happy experiences. In the small, rural community the activities she enjoyed were centered in their home, school, and church. She fondly recalled Saturday night dances at the church with families sharing potluck dinners and dancing. The benches were moved to the outer edges of the room providing a dance floor. The children slept on the benches until it was time to put everything back in place for Sunday meetings before they went home.
In 1934 Grace attended LDS Business School in Salt Lake City. She missed her family, so after she completed her classes she moved to Pocatello, Idaho near Marsh Center. Grace continued to take business classes there and later at Utah State College in Logan.
While Grace was in Logan she met Loren Devel Anderson and they were married December 24, 1938. They had four sons: Jay Lamont, Gary Lawrence, Wilford, and Jerry. The youngest two did not survive infancy.
During her life Grace faced many difficult and tragic circumstances. At the age of eleven she was in an accident when the farm truck she was in was struck by a train. Two of her younger siblings were killed and she was critically injured. Her mother lost her life in a house fire when Grace was newly married. When her oldest son, Jay, was a year old her young family spent a year living in a tent in the mountains near Challis, Idaho while her husband worked at his brother's dude ranch. In the years following the birth of her second son, Gary, she buried two sons shortly after each was born. She was divorced in 1958. Because of her courage, positive outlook, faith, and determination she was able to overcome the challenges she experienced.
At age forty-six Grace left Idaho for a new career as the buyer for a large souvenir and gift business in Las Vegas, Nevada. She had no previous experience as a buyer, and yet succeeded in spite of that. After twenty-five years in Las Vegas she chose to retire and move to remote Willow, Alaska. Her son, Gary, was living seventy-five miles away in Anchorage. Grace quickly got involved by serving in the library, senior center, and her church where she made many close friends. She loved her fifteen years in Alaska and moved to Salt Lake City in 2004 when her son moved to southern Utah. She continued her volunteering spirit by serving as a hostess at the Joseph Smith Memorial Building for several years. At the age of 99 she gave up driving and moved to an apartment in Bountiful near her son, Jay. New friendships were once again formed.
She is survived by her sons Jay (Laureen) and Gary (Bonnie), 8 grandchildren, 31 great-grandchildren, and 5 great-great-grandchildren. Her greatest joy came from her faith, family and friends.
Funeral services will be held at noon on Saturday, July 13, 2019 at the Bountiful 2nd Ward Chapel, 650 South 200 East. A viewing will be held that morning from 10 - 11:45 a.m. in the same building. Interment at Riverview Cemetery in Tremonton, Utah.