Doris Rigby Preston, 93, returned to the loving embrace of her Savior, Jesus Christ, on Tuesday, October 25, 2022. She has now been reunited with her beloved husband, Charles Joseph (Joe) Preston, 42 years after his death. Doris was a long-time resident of Declo, Idaho. She died at the Country Home Assisted Living facility in Bountiful, Utah, from causes incident to old age.
Doris was born August 9, 1929, at Sublett, Idaho, in the area where her paternal and maternal grandparents homesteaded just over fifteen years earlier. She was the first-born child of Bela Stanley and Josephine Rentmeister Rigby. She grew up on the family farms in Sublett and Unity, Idaho. She was always a hard worker, who was a great help to her parents, and did farm and household chores, and was a loving big sister to her younger siblings. She went to school in Burley, Idaho, and graduated from high school in 1947. After graduation, she worked as a secretary at Wall Furniture where she caught the eye of Joe Preston, who worked down the street from her. They fell in love and were sealed for time and all eternity in the Idaho Falls Temple on April 27, 1949.
Doris supported Joe in all that he did, as a farmer, as an insurance agent and owner of a successful insurance agency, as member of the Idaho State Legislature, and as Bishop of the Declo Ward. Doris was an excellent homemaker, cook and seamstress. She helped Joe run his insurance business, was a reporter for the South Idaho Press, and taught numerous groups of rowdy boys as a 4-H leader.
Together, Joe and Doris raised five children who were their top priority. Joe and Doris were deeply in love with each other. Doris was simply a wonderful mother. She was kind, patient and loving, particularly when her children were sick or faced trials. She had a life-long love of reading and learning, which she passed on to her children through weekly trips to the Burley Library. In her beautiful penmanship, Doris wrote long weekly letters to her children while they were serving missions. She kept journals, scrapbooks and photo albums of her family and ancestors all her life. In short, her children always knew that there was nothing more important to Doris than strengthening family relationships and showing love to each other.
The family loved to camp in the early years and later went on many road trips across America, and ultimately toured Europe for a month. As the children grew up, Doris and Joe continued to travel and went to many wonderful places around the world. After Joe’s death, she continued to travel with her children and their families.
When Joe was diagnosed with bone cancer, Doris was at his side every step of the way, as she tenderly cared for him for several years until his death. As a widow, Doris raised her youngest daughter, Josephine, and, for years, she owned and ran The Book Store on the square in Rupert, Idaho. As her children grew up and had their own children, Doris was there to help with each new grandchild’s birth. This tradition continued when her grandchildren had children of their own.
Throughout her life, Doris was a devoted member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, serving in many callings in the wards in which she lived, including the Primary, Sunday School, Young Women, and Relief Society, on the ward and stake level. Doris served a mission to the Swiss Temple, and three missions at the Family History Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. She loved serving in the Temple and doing family history research and even traveled to Europe in her persistent efforts to find her ancestors.
Doris has always helped and served those around her and, as a result, is beloved by many neighbors, friends, and ward members. Doris found the most joy and fulfillment in serving Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father. In sum, Doris’s life has been characterized by gratitude for all she was given, her love and service for others, hard work, and whole-hearted commitment to the Gospel. Her family is deeply grateful for her powerful testimony of Jesus Christ, the life she lived, and the example she set. Her influence will continue to be a positive influence in the lives of generations to come.
In her last years, Doris’ true and pure nature showed through. She was a loving angel to all and was unfailingly kind and grateful to those who cared for her. The family is deeply grateful to Stephen and Sharon Preston who tenderly and lovingly cared for Doris in their home for nine years. Their service to this great woman was remarkable. We also are very grateful to Country Home Assisted Living, its owner and its marvelous staff for the wonderful service, love and care they showed to our mother for the past 14 months.
Doris is survived by her five children: Stephen Theron (Sharon) of Bountiful, Utah; Stanley Joseph (Cheryl) of Bountiful, Utah; Timothy Fred (Renae) of Burley, Idaho; Renee Schwendiman (Henry) of Salt Lake City, Utah; and Josephine Palmer (Vernon) of Tooele, Utah; her three sisters: Edna Heinze, Ruby Kern, and Linda (Dean) Strom; two sisters-in-law Sharon Rigby and Joyce Preston; 22 grandchildren and 47 great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her husband, her parents, a brother Jon Rigby, a sister-in-law Clea May Wilkinson and four brothers-in-law: Harry Heinze, Harold Kern, Fred Preston, and Lloyd Wilkinson.
Funeral Services will be conducted on Friday, October 28, 2022, at 2:00 P.M. at the LDS Chapel, located at 1450 South 350 West, Bountiful, Utah. Friends may call at the church from 12:45 to 1:45 p.m. prior to the funeral. Interment will be at the Declo Cemetery on Saturday, October 29, 2022, at 1:00 p.m. Following the burial there will be a “Celebration of Life” at 2:00 p.m. at the LDS Chapel located at 213 West Main Street, Declo, Idaho.
The family suggests contributions to the missionary fund of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints: https://donate.churchofjesuschrist.org/donations/church/missionary-fund.html?cde2=807-Missionary-home&cid=Missionary-home&cde1=795.
Services will be streamed live on Russon Mortuary & Crematory Facebook page and this obituary page.