Juna Ellsworth Griffiths, beloved wife, mother, sister, grandmother, and great-grandmother, passed away peacefully at home surrounded by her family on December 16, 2021.
Juna was born December 21, 1942, in Mesa, Arizona and spent her youth in the farming community of Queen Creek, Arizona. She attended Queen Creek Elementary and graduated from Chandler High School in 1960. Soon after, she moved to Salt Lake City, Utah to attend college. In July 1962, she met her eternal companion Gerald “Jerry” Wayne Griffiths. They were married in the Mesa Temple on November 1, 1962. A year later Juna convinced Jerry to move from Provo to be closer to her family in Mesa, Arizona. They raised their family in Mesa until 1978 when Jerry and Juna moved back to Provo, Utah where they lived until 2011. Jerry and Juna then moved to Draper, Utah to be closer to their children.
Juna was a devout member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and served faithfully in many church callings. She was deeply proud of her rich pioneer heritage and remained true to her faith throughout her life. Along with her faith, family was her greatest priority. She made sure to gather her family often, whether it be for Sunday dinner, holiday traditions, or casual get-togethers. Her children and grandchildren loved spending time with her in the kitchen, which overflowed with laughter and love. Juna was full of compassion and became an adopted mom to many. There was rarely a Sunday dinner in her home where she had not invited friends to join with the family. She spent her life helping others along their way. Juna is loved by many and will be dearly missed.
Juna is survived by her three children—David (Kathy) Griffiths, Debra (Marc) Didier, Donald (Angela) Griffiths, 20 grandchildren, 10 great-grandchildren, sisters Carolyn Schnepf and Margaret Schnepf, and sisters-in-law Judy Ellsworth and Shirley Griffiths. She is preceded in death by her husband Jerry Griffiths, her parents Donald Ellsworth and Margaret B. Cooper Ellsworth, and brothers Donald Delos Ellsworth and Robert “Bob” Cooper Ellsworth.
Funeral services will be held Saturday, January 15, 2022, at 11:00am at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 13112 South 700 East, Draper, Utah. Friends may visit family on Friday, January 14, 2022, from 6:00-8:00pm at Larkin Sunset Gardens, 1950 East 10600 South, Sandy, Utah and Saturday, January 15, 2022, from 9:30-10:45am at the church prior to the funeral service. Interment will be at East Lawn Memorial Hills, 4800 North 650 East, Provo, Utah.
I am forever grateful for the friendship of Juna and Jerry's daughter Debra as not only have I had a 50 plus year friendship with her, but in the process had the privilege of making memories along the way with her angel mother Juna. I always loved hearing her sweet voice and how she would always call me by my abbreviated name that only my closest friends would use...it always made me feel so loved.
Years ago, as a displaced Canadian BYU student, so far away from my own family, Jerry and Juna would always make me feel welcome in their home. I was one of the many who found myself pulled up to not only to their kitchen table but also pulled into the fabric of their family. That "no empty chair" was not just a saying but the mantra by which the Griffiths operated. They made everyone feel feel welcomed and yes....loved, even going so far as to when I got married, they hosted my wedding reception in their home.
I am thankful for the recent memory, of staying at Juna's over a conference weekend...the richness of the history I have with her daughter and the bonus gift of sharing her mother who, as I have come to find out, made everyone feel like we had a piece of her heart. Goodbye sweet Mama Griffith....I welcome the day when I hear your greeting "hi Di" once more. Till we meet again!
Thank you for sharing Juna's funeral with us. I am so grateful for the knowledge that our family is eternal,
When we lived in utah, Juna adopted us and we let her do that, she was a mother to us , always present, always listening, always wanting to learn and discover something new.
We remember our dinners on Sundays, she was always the one convoking all of us, around her table , at her home, to build ties and wonderful memories.
She used to make the best flan in the word, with soy milk, specially for Donald.
I remember playing chest with Jerry and enjoying from Dave’s slow cook delicious recipes in the bbq.
We also remember our great conversations with Debbie and Angie.
Juna was a wonderful woman ,present where she was most needed, whether it was a family mision or a work task or a special favor for a friend.
Juna we wish you a good trip to the eternal east and we know the great spirit will embrace you in his nest.
We love you ,
Carolina and Felipe Jaramillo.
With tender hearts Candilyn and I, together with our 6 children and their families, express our heartfelt condolences to you Dave, Debra, and Donald and your loving families at the December 16, 2021 departure of your dear noble Mother, Grandmother, and Great Grandmother, Juna.
As friends of Juna and Gerry for 31 years each of our 4 sons--in turn--for over some 15 of those years, were so fortunate to have visited Juna and Gerry in their beautiful, gospel-centered home, where we ALWAYS felt uplifted by their true and faithful Christ-like lives.
May the peace and comfort that surpasses understanding be with each of you until you meet again your beloved Matriarch and Patriarch, Juna and Gerry.
Much love, The Newells
Juna always had beautiful hair and clothes. It was a delight to see her always. We have not seen her recently. We will miss her bright smile and cheery disposition. We send you our deepest and heartfelt condolences to her family at this difficult time of her passing.
Our condolences and thoughts are with you. Saddened by Aunt Juna’s departure. She has graduated with honors from this mortal existence. We love you guys!
Dain & Lisa Ellsworth.
Your parents were wonderful friends and neighbors. We have many memories of the kindness they were always so willing to extend to others. Juna & Jerry were both amazing examples to all who new them. We know they must be happy to once again be United. Love, Don & B. J.