Wallace Grant Bennett
11/06/1923 - 02/23/2019
Wallace Grant (Wally) Bennett passed away peacefully on Feb 23, 2019, surrounded by his loving family. Born November 6, 1923, he was the oldest of Wallace Foster and Frances Grant Bennett’s five children. His siblings include Rosemary (Robert Fletcher), David, (Bonnie Stone), Frances, (Lawrence Jeppson), and Robert (Joyce McKay).
Wally was the oldest of 26 grandchildren of John F. and Rose Wallace Bennett. His mother was the youngest of Heber J. Grant’s 10 daughters. He cherished this rich heritage and his more than 75 Bennett and Grant cousins throughout his life.
Wally entered the University of Utah in 1941, where he especially enjoyed his work as the Business Manager of the Daily Utah Chronicle. From 1943-1948, his studies were interrupted, first by his military service in World War II, followed by a mission in Europe for the LDS church.
He returned to the U of U and earned a BA in Military Science in 1949.
While completing his military service in San Francisco, Wally fell in love with Theda Call. They were married in the Salt Lake Temple in 1951, and spent 42 rich years together until Theda died in 1993. Wally and Theda have five children: Douglas (Mary), Grant (Coleen), Bruce (Paige), Stephen (Naxelui), and Janna, as well as 17 grandchildren, and 13 great grandchildren.
Wally married Betty Sturm Foulger on May 27, 1994 in the Salt Lake Temple. They enjoyed eight happy years together until Betty died in 2002.
Marie Barker Nelson and Wally were married on August 15, 2003, and they had 15 sweet years as a couple. They showed great love and tenderness as they cared for each other well into their 90’s, until Marie passed away in November, 2018.
Wally enjoyed success in two professional careers. In 1948, he started as a sales clerk at Bennett Glass and Paint, where he worked in many different positions, including his last five years there as the president of the company. In 1980, Wally began a 20-year career in the financial services industry by becoming a Certified Financial Planner.
Wally loved The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and he faithfully served in a wide variety of different callings. He had many cherished experiences during his missionary service in the British Mission, from 1946-1948, when he was Secretary to President Alma Sonne, whom he grew to love deeply. He and President Sonne traveled together throughout Europe to provide much needed resources to European members of the Church devastated by WWII. Years later, he and his wife Theda were called back to England, this time to preside over the England South Mission. President and Sister Bennett were much beloved by the missionaries and members in England, and the family treasured their experiences in England and Europe.
Wally loved The United States of America and served on active duty twice. He was Commissioned in Field Artillery and later transferred as an officer to Infantry. He served nearly a year in Japan following the end of World War II and developed profound friendships there that he cherished for the rest of his life. When the Korean War broke out, Wally was recalled to active duty and served 16 months as the Information and Education Officer at the Presidio in San Francisco.
Wally continued to serve his community after he was honorably discharged from the Army in 1952, as a member and leader of many civic organizations, boards, and charitable organizations, including The Rotary Club, The Boy Scouts of America, The American Cancer Society, The Salt Lake Area Chamber of Commerce, The National Paint Organization and many more. He worked on the political campaigns of his father, Sen. Wallace F. Bennett, and his brother, Sen. Robert F. Bennett, and followed public events and politics carefully throughout his life.
Wally’s life was a balance of faith, joy, service and dedication. He loved the Lord Jesus Christ, His Gospel, and service in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. He loved to travel and get acquainted with people all over the world. He loved his family. He loved life!
Funeral Services will be held Saturday, March 2, 2019, at 11:00 am at the Monument Park Stake Center, 1320 South Wasatch Blvd. where a visitation will be held Friday, March 1, 2019 from 6:00 to 8:00 pm and Saturday 9:45 to 10:45 prior to services. Interment, Salt Lake City Cemetery.