Bruce T. Reese
03/30/1949 - 04/04/2019
Bruce T. Reese, 70, beloved husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend, passed away at home on April 4, 2019 after a courageous 14 year battle with cancer.
Ever grateful, even in the face of aggressive cancer, Bruce considered himself blessed in all things. He was married to the love of his life, Lu Anne, for more than 45 years and he had seven children who married six wonderful spouses and all loved and adored him. His 20 grandchildren will notice the empty seat their grandpa used to occupy at their baseball games, recitals and soccer matches but they all know their grandpa loved each one of them dearly. In addition to family, Bruce was surrounded by friends who will miss his wise counsel, his thoughts on BYU athletics, book recommendations and music reviews.
Bruce was born on March 30, 1949, in West Lafayette, Indiana, to Bruce A. Reese and Barbara T. Reese. Bruce split his childhood between West Lafayette and Huntsville, Alabama where he learned to tolerate his father’s love of hunting and fishing but excelled in academics. He enrolled at Princeton in the fall of 1967 where he enjoyed being a member of the crew team and met his life-long friend, Bob Johnson. However, a lack of pretty girls (or any girls for that matter) at Princeton led Bruce to transfer to BYU in 1968. After heroically, according to Bruce, saving his Dad and brother from certain death during a week-long Canadian fishing trip, he left for his LDS mission in Hamburg, Germany in 1969. Upon his return to Provo, Bruce met the beautiful, Lu Anne Gold, and they were married and sealed in the Salt Lake Temple on August 15, 1973.
He graduated from BYU in 1973 with a degree in English. Proving to his dad that you can have a career with an English degree, Bruce enrolled in the charter class of the J. Reuben Clark Law School. Bruce graduated from law school in 1976. In addition to a great education, he collected more life-long friends in law school. After a short career in private practice at law firms in Denver and Washington D.C., Bruce recognized a career as a litigator was not for him and he moved his family to Sandy, Utah in the summer of 1984 and began his career at Bonneville International as the associate general counsel. From the beginning, Bruce loved everything about Bonneville. It was the perfect fit for him giving him the chance to work hard, solve problems and listen to rock ‘n’ roll. He was mentored by some great individuals in Rod Brady and President Hinckley during his time at Bonneville. In 1996, he was promoted to the position of President and CEO of Bonneville, a position he held until 2011 when he joined Hubbard Radio as President and CEO after Hubbard Broadcasting purchased WTOP-FM and other Bonneville radio stations. Bruce thought of his Bonneville and Hubbard co-workers as his family away from family and he cherished his time in the radio industry.
Bruce was greatly admired in the radio industry and was one of the most influential and admired radio executives in the country during his time at Bonneville and Hubbard. Under his leadership, Bonneville solidified a reputation for strong community service and involvement and Bonneville was often considered the gold standard for radio companies. While at Bonneville, Bruce served as the chair of the National Association of Broadcaster’s Radio Board and as the Joint Board Chair for the NAB. In addition to his leadership at the NAB, Bruce served on the board of directors for the Associated Press for almost nine years.
He was committed to community service and participated in a number of organizations that benefited greatly from his service. He served on the Board of Trustees of Intermountain Healthcare for many years, including serving as the Vice-Chair. Additionally, he served on the boards of the United Way of Salt Lake, Primary Children’s Medical Center and Pioneer Theatre. For his service, he has been recognized with the NAB National Radio Award, Radio Ink’s Lifetime Leadership Award and the 2010 Deseret Foundation award, among other awards.
Bruce was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and served faithfully in many Church callings over the years, including as a Bishop, high councilor, stake mission leader, ward chorister, and, his favorite, as gospel doctrine teacher. He took great pride in being part of the Willow Creek 7th Ward’s Ward Choir and looked forward to its annual ward Christmas program each year.
While Bruce loved to golf, the game of golf never returned the favor. When not busy working or serving others, Bruce loved to tend to his yard and would frequently wake his children up very early on Saturdays to pull the weeds. His kids believed he liked waking the kids up more than he liked getting the weeds pulled. He was an avid reader and had a soft spot for Paul Simon’s music. He didn’t mind being the “old guy” at Arcade Fire, Prince or St. Paul and the Broken Bones concerts. One of the great joys in his life the last few years was hosting outdoor summer movies for his friends where he played the movies he loved. Though he passed his fondness for movies on to his children, none of his children ever understood his fondness for Tom Hanks’ “Joe Versus the Volcano”.
Bruce was preceded in death by his parents and his younger brother Michael and is survived by his wife Lu Anne, his seven children: Gavin (Nicole), Cameron (Maren), Taylor (Stacey), Zachary (Emily), Megan (Jason), Caitlin (Logan) and Kelley, 20 grandchildren, his sister Pam (Dan) and his sister-in-law, Linda.
Funeral services will be conducted on Wednesday, April 10, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. at the Willow Creek Stake Center, 2350 E. Creek Road, Cottonwood Heights, Utah 84093. Interment will follow at Larkin Sunset Gardens Cemetery. Viewings will be held on Tuesday, April 9, 2019, from 6:00 pm to 8:00 p.m. at Larkin Sunset Gardens, 1950 East Dimple Dell Road, Sandy, Utah and prior to the services at the church on Wednesday morning from 9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.
The Reese family wishes to thank all the family and friends who have reached out to Bruce and his family with love and affection the past few weeks. The family also wants to thank Bruce’s medical team: Dr. Derrick Haslem, his hospice nurse, Meghan Ross, and his son, Dr. Zachary Reese, for their compassion and concern in prolonging his life.