Gary Eugene Salisbury, my darling man, finished the fight of his life in the quiet of early morning July 12, 2018. The enemy cancer attacked him with a vengeance, and he waged war for a year and a half, but my courageous warrior won because the disease did not defeat his spirit. My Gary bore it all with humility and grace to teach his family more life lessons.
He was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, August 31, 1947 to Jennie (Pat) Killpack and Charles Harold Salisbury. He had many adventures and learning experiences with his siblings Jean, Richard, Brent, and Carl Salisbury. Gary graduated from Hillcrest High School in 1965, served a Mormon mission in West Virginia, Virginia, and North Carolina (1966-68), returned to continue his education at Brigham Young University until I, Renae Barrett, swept him off his feet. We married in the Salt Lake LDS temple in 1969.
Uncle Sam called Gary into his service just five months later, but we were fortunate to spend his enlistment in Frankfurt, Germany. Two years and one baby Christopher later, Gary was discharged. We made our home in Salt Lake where my hardworking man attended the University of Utah while providing for his family that now included a second baby boy Andrew.
San Jose, California was our next stop when Gary started a career that moved him in the direction of human resources, a great match because of his great people skills. Two more darling boys, Joseph and then Timothy, joined our family during the next 4 years. Gary loved his boys, and coaching their baseball and basketball teams was the joy of his life during their growing-up years.
Gary’s all-time favorite church calling was serving as a scoutmaster, and he had a blast hiking, camping, and river-running with his scouts. He was especially thrilled each time a boy reached Eagle rank, and there were 12 who did.
Of all of Gary’s work experiences, he most appreciated employment with the LDS Church as a human resource director in various departments. He especially loved his assignment to the Atlanta, Georgia regional office because he loved the South and her people. He retired from church employment in 2012.
As many couples, Gary and I found great joy in our family of boys, especially as we watched them reach many of life’s milestones: missionary service, marriage, and giving us ten grandchildren that include five boys and five girls. A little travel here and there – especially to visit “the kids” – and a final move to his dream destination in St. George, Utah fulfilled his simple goals because he was with that girl who captured and held onto his heart back in 1968.
These few details of his life do not begin to describe the complexities of my darling’s journey that moved him from a good man to a great man; hero to his sons and to me; the one who overcame personal challenges and endured the worst of crucibles. Those who will miss him most include his sons and their wives: Chris and Kendle, Andy and Lisa, Joe and Kara, and Tim; his grandchildren Brayden, Taylor, Spencer, Drew, Abby, Mia, Connor, Maegan, Carter, and Eve; his sister Jean Salisbury Goff and brothers Richard (Robin), Brent (Debi), and Carl Salisbury, scores of nieces and nephews as well as wonderful friends who enriched our lives throughout our crazy adventures that were filled with more laughter than tears, more joy than sorrow.
The schedule for Gary E. Salisbury’s services under the direction of McMillan Mortuary are as follows:
Friday, July 20, 2018 6-8 pm-Visitation and viewing, Sun River LDS Chapel, 1483 Angel Arch Drive St. George, Utah 84790
Saturday, July 21, 2018 9am - Military Honor Guard Ceremony & Dedication of the Grave, Tonaquint Cemetery, 1777 S Dixie Dr. St. George, UT 84770
Saturday July 21, 2018 11 am - Memorial Service (chapel), Sun River LDS Chapel, 1483 Angel Arch Drive, St. George, Utah 84790