Virginia Urry Jensen
08/20/1939 - 03/18/2020
Virginia Urry Jensen, beloved wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, sister, aunt, and friend, returned to her Heavenly Father on March 18, 2020. She was 80 years old. She was born on August 20, 1939 to Francis L. Urry and Virginia C. Urry at LDS Hospital in Salt Lake City and grew up in Salt Lake’s Avenues neighborhood. She graduated from West High School and attended the University of Utah. While at the U., Virginia worked as the assistant to the director of the Olpin Union Building, where David Jensen met her and lined her up with his brother Rees. David’s exact words are legendary in our family: “Rees, I’ve met the girl you’re going to marry.”
Rees took one look at her blue eyes and fell in love at first sight. Rees and Virginia married in the Logan LDS Temple on April 11, 1963, and he has been calling her “Blue Eyes” for nearly 57 years.
Like her movie idol Doris Day, Virginia dressed impeccably and never left the house with her hair and lipstick less than perfect. She loved to cultivate beauty in all things, especially her garden—where she lovingly tended countless buds and blooms—and her home, which was beautifully decorated and maintained.
Virginia dedicated herself to serving in any capacity to which she was called. After serving as a hostess at the Joseph Smith Memorial Building, Virginia was called to work as Director of LDS Church Building Hosting, where she made many cherished friendships. In April 1997 she was called as the First Counselor in the General Relief Society Presidency of the Church, serving alongside Mary Ellen Smoot and Sheri Dew. In July 2003, Rees became President of the Missouri Independence Mission and, at his side, Virginia became the ultimate “mission mom,” feeding the young elders and sisters excellent and abundant food, comforting them during tough times, and ensuring they knew they were loved. President and Sister Jensen’s former missionaries have continued to visit them regularly, which has brought them great joy.
Above all else, Virginia loved her family, and loved to create beautiful occasions for gathering them together. Grandma and Papa’s Christmas Eve parties were anticipated all year: her tables sparkled with candlelight and were laden with lovingly prepared treats to delight her children and grandchildren, including everyone’s favorite “potato boats,” Grandma’s special Christmas tree sugar cookies, and chocolate-frosted “Grandma cupcakes.” We will continue making them, and remembering her.
The family warmly thanks Luisa Martinez, Virginia’s aide, caregiver, and treasured friend, for her loving service and extraordinary devotion during the past 18 months. We also thank Amanda Laloni for her excellent care, friendship, and service. Thanks to all the staff of Spring Gardens Holladay (formerly the Abbington), as well as the nurses of Canyon Hospice, for their compassion, friendship, and skillful attention to our parents’ needs. We acknowledge with love and appreciation all of the family members and friends who have supported our parents through the challenges of the past several years. We have had angels all around us, and are grateful for them beyond words.
Virginia is survived by her husband, J. Rees; children Michelle (Chris) Davidson, Rees U. (Lyssa) Jensen, Suzanne Jensen, and Kristin (Gary) Hart; 11 grandchildren and 5 grandchildren-in-law; one great-granddaughter; two sisters, Jane Harris and Grace Henderson; six grand-dogs and two great-grand-kitties. Two more great-grandchildren will arrive this spring. Virginia is preceded in death by her parents, and a brother, Francis M. Urry.
Due to the present necessity of social distancing, a private graveside service will be held for immediate family. We look forward to greeting friends and family at a celebration of Virginia’s life at a future time when circumstances permit.