My name is Scott Alexander Edgar. I grew up in a “Latter-day Saint Home.” That is, we were members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In the mid-1800s, early “Mormon” missionaries sent from America to Europe to share the Good News of the Restoration. Many of my ancestors (on both sides of my family) were taught in their home countries (England, Scotland, and Holland) and were converted to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. My pioneer ancestor’s surnames were Edgar, McKay, Timpson, Strickland, Noorda, and Wezenaar. Because of their faith and commitment to the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ, these noble ancestors of mine followed the call of a Prophet of God (Brigham Young) and immigrated to America. They were early pioneers who left their homelands and made their way by ship to American ports. Once on American soil, they fitted out wagons and handcarts, joined wagon trains, and moved slowly but deliberately across American and Indian lands to Zion in the Salt Lake Valley of the Utah Territory. I am forever grateful to these brave ancestors of mine. I am grateful for their testimonies, their sacrifices, and their commitments to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They are my family heritage and an important part of who I am.
I was born December 21st, 1946, at Letterman Army Hospital on the Presidio of San Francisco. I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. As a young boy, I spent many Saturdays’ exploring the city and often fishing under “the Golden Gate Bridge.” In those days, a young boy my age could safely go just about anywhere in the city for a 15-cent bus/trolley transfer ticket; …just hop on and hop off. On Saturdays and “no school days,” my mother would often give me a brown bag with lunch, and just send me off for the day “…dinners at five” she would say. If I hadn’t had enough for breakfast, she would often make me an “eggy sandwich” to start my day off (an eggy sandwich was a hot fried egg, cooked over easy, and placed between two slices of buttered white bread, umm, umm!). Anyway, for me the city was a magical and safe place to be. I loved baseball and enjoyed watching or listening to games at old Kezar Stadium. I remember when the New York Giants ball club transferred to San Francisco and the Brooklyn Dodgers moved to LA (both teams made the move around 1960). Those were great days for the city. In addition, I also enjoyed Fisherman’s Wharf, the Marina, the Palace of Fine Arts, the Legion of Honor Art Museum, the Presidio of San Francisco, hanging out at the Cliff House (where I could buy penny candy), swimming at Sutros baths (and later ice skating there), wondering through Playland at the Beach, exploring Golden Gate Park, swimming at the old saltwater Fleishhacker Pool, and enjoying pink popcorn while visiting Fleishhacker Zoo. I also loved fishing at Old Fort Point underneath the Golden Gate Bridge …and, at other times, fishing at China Beach or Lake Merced.
I was the only son of five children: Karen (my older sister), me, Nancy, Laurie, and Robin. Our parents were formally divorced in August 1956. Then, in the Summer of 1962, after my mother’s second divorce, we moved with her and our two stepbrothers (Tony and John), to San Jose (CA). In 1964, I graduated from Cupertino High School. And, shortly afterwards, I moved by myself to Southern California (Garden Grove) to spend time with my dad. His band (the Mel Edgar Trio) was playing nightly at a nice hotel lounge across the street from Disneyland. While there, I attended one semester of college at Orange Coast College, Costa Mesa (CA). I lived with dad for about six months, then he took a “gig” in Elko (NV), and I decided to return home to San Jose. Back in San Jose, I attended another semester of college, this time at Foothill College, Los Altos Hills (CA).
When I turned 19 years old, I was given an opportunity to serve a two-year proselyting mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Vietnam War was just ramping up and many of my friends were being drafted into military service. There were limits on the number of young men who could serve as missionaries. Many young men were being drafted to fill the manpower needs of the military. Fortunately, I was granted a ministerial deferment (for two years), which allowed me to accept a two-year mission assignment, and I was assigned to the North Central States Mission. My mission home was in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Full-time missionary work changed the direction of my life. Not only was I able to teach the truths of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ, but I was also able to mature and learn valuable and important life principles. I learned who I was, and I gained a firm testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ. In addition, I gained valuable life skills and good habits, such as goal setting, self-discipline, punctuality, personal cleanliness, self-reliance, kindness to others, and so much more.
Military Service: United States Air Force
When I returned home from the mission field (April 1968), I was instructed to report to the military service draft board. I was certain I would not be accepted because I had a heart murmur (or something) that almost kept me from serving in the mission field. So, I confidently reported to the draft board. They scheduled me for a physical, and much to my surprise, I passed! I was told I would receive my Army draft notice in the mail within the month.
Well, before I got the draft notice, I stopped by the local Air Force recruiter’s office and joined the United States Air Force. I began active-duty military service on September 8th, 1968; and I was trained as an Intelligence Technician and an Arial Photo/Imagery Interpreter. Ultimately, I made the Air Force my career. I served multiple tours in Southeast Asia, England, and Germany. I separated briefly from the service long enough to attend and graduate from Brigham Young University-Provo with a bachelor’s degree in International Relations.
After graduation, I reentered the Air Force and served as a Foreign Affairs Officer (FAO). My primary area of responsibility (AOR) was the Middle East. I served as a Middle East area specialist, analyst, and briefing officer. In that capacity, I lived and traveled in many countries (Far East, Western Europe, and the Middle/Near East). On December 31, 1993, I retired from the Air Force after serving 24 years on active duty (plus a few years at BYU). For me, military service became my life; it defined me. It was a challenging career full of growth, learning, and excitement. Except for a lonely one-year combat tour in Southeast Asia (the longest year of my life), I fully enjoyed serving. It was a great honor.
While on active military duty, I also had the privileged of being married to two amazing and wonderful women (at different times), both of whom supported me in my military service and on many assignments. I know it wasn’t always easy for them. I love them both; and looking back, I have truly been blessed to have them in my life. I am so grateful for these two good women (beautiful ladies) in my life. I am a better person because of them.
My Dear Jenny Marie was my first wife. She was beautiful, smart, and compassionate. We met shortly after I returned from a Full-Time Church Missionary assignment. Jenny always made me happy just being with her, and she made me a better person. On April 15th, 1969, we were married and sealed together in the Oakland California Temple. Jenny was the most compassionate person I knew. She was loved and admired by all who knew her. If anyone needed understanding and compassion, Jenny was the person they would turn to. Jenny and I lived happily together for 15 wonderful years, growing, raising a family, and learning. We were “a military family,” and we loved our life. She was always loving and supportive. She dreamed of having eight (8) children …and, I was okay with that (it was important to her). We had seven (7) children together. All but one of our children were born overseas.
But sadly, just after 10:00 pm on the evening of April 8th, 1984, Jenny began to gasp, she sat up suddenly in bed, and then collapsed lifeless in my arms (from a congenital heart condition). She was only 37 years old! I was devastated. Without her, I felt lost and did not know how to move on. Instantly, I became an “unworthy” and humbled single parent of our seven (7) beautiful children. This was hard, not only for me but for our children as well. How were we to manage without “Mom?” It was a life-changing event for all of us. But, as we moved forward, I found that the Lord is merciful and makes compensations. With the Lord’s help and the tremendous support and compassion of the United States Air Force, we survived and stayed together. I love and appreciate the Lord, and my children.
Then, about six years later, I was guided to and found another wonderful companion: my beautiful, patient, forgiving, and loving Katherine Elizabeth. We met at a Church Single Adult Conference in Long Beach, California. When we first met, she referred to me as “the Captain with Seven Children” (a reference to the Von Trapp Family in The Sound of Music). We laughed together and I really enjoyed her company; and it did not seem to bother her that I was “an active-duty military man,” nor that I had seven (7) children at home. Apparently, she was able to see beyond the obvious challenges. We dated and spent quality time together (as individuals and with our children). Over a relatively short time (8 months), we fell in love and Kathy agreed to marry me. On February 24th, 1990, we were married and sealed together in the Las Vegas Nevada Temple, and we continue to be happily married. Kathy is amazing!
All combined, Jenny, Kathy and I have raised ten (10) beautiful children. They are all grown now and have families and children of their own. Currently, we have 32 wonderful grandchildren who call us “Papa and Nana.” I love them all. Without question, love has no bounds!
In December 1973, after 24 years on active-duty military service, I hung up my uniform and retired from the United States Air Force. My retirement ceremony was held at the Officer’s Club, Hickam AFB, Hawaii. Afterward, we moved to and settled in Henderson, NV. Kathy resumed her Nursing career, and I struggled for months trying to find work. Apparently, my specific military training and skills were not in high demand in Southern Nevada. So, at length, I went back to school to study computer networking and repair technology. Eventually, I found work at Boulder City Hospital and managed to work my way up to become the hospital IT Manager. I enjoyed working with my hands on computer hardware and computer network technologies.
While in Southern Nevada, I also gave into my lifelong dream of owning my own horses. We bought some of these beautiful creatures and purchased a corral for them at the local Henderson Horseman’s Association. These were a noble herd of Friends. I believe horses are a gift from God! They added joy to my life, and they make the land beautiful.
After about 12 years in Southern Nevada, the City of Henderson became too crowded for us; so, we decided to move on. We packed up, sold our home, loaded the horses into a trailer, and drove north. We settled in Sanpete County in Central Utah, bought a small ranch outside of Spring City, and began living the dream. We had horses, dogs, and cats. Kathy continued her nursing career in Sanpete County, and I started a small computer support business in a nearby college town (Ephraim).
After all the children had moved out and began their own families, our home in Spring City became a favorite destination spot for the grandchildren. We loved it. It was a happy place for all of us. Plus, with our horses, dogs, cats, “and sheep,” it became a peaceful and relaxing place to be. I was truly living the dream of my lifetime. I loved waking up in the morning and beginning each day. Kathy and I continued to live that dream for more than 10 wonderful years.
Then, in December 2016, there came a phone call from a friend asking us to accept a Full-Time Senior Missionary assignment for the Church. After prayerful consideration, Kathy and I decided it was the right thing to do. We interviewed with our Bishop, filled out our papers, met with our Stake President, and submitted our papers to Church Headquarters in Salt Lake City. Several weeks later, we received a package in the mail from the Prophet (Thomas S. Monson). We were called to serve in the Hawaii Honolulu Mission and assigned specifically to Brigham Young University-Hawaii (BYUH).
Well, then what? We put our home up for sale. I sold my truck. With the help of many of our children, we held a successful “Garage/Barn Sale.” We also sold our horses (ouch!). We received (and accepted) a good offer on our home. And, with the help of good neighbors and friends, we hauled all our “do not sell” items to storage units. (Of course, all the above took several weeks.) In the end, we did a “white tornado” clean-up job on the house and packed Kathy’s Honda CR-V with our mission travel bags. We gave our farewell talks in church on April 30th; and, on Monday morning, May 1st, 2017, we left our home in Spring City and drove north to Provo. We entered the Provo Missionary Training Center (MTC) at about 11:00 am.
After five days of inspirational training and learning, we drove out of Provo heading south towards Southern California. On the way, we stopped at the Title Company in Nephi (UT) and signed the documents closing the sale our home. After which, we continued our journey to Southern California to ship our Honda to Hawaii. We had a brief but wonderful visit with our son Sam, his beautiful wife Erin, and their adorable children in San Clemente (CA). Then, Sam drove us to the Sea Port at Long Beach to drop off our Honda for shipment; and then, he drove us to the Los Angeles airport (LAX). (Sam was proud to say he “sent us out into the mission field” knowing that just 13 years earlier we had sent him out into the mission field in Venezuela.)
Upon arrival in Hawaii, we were met at the Honolulu Airport by our mission supervisors (Elder Brad & Sister Marsha Dee) and driven to our missionary apartment in Laie, near the BYUH campus. Our mission call was a 23-month assignment to serve in the Hawaii Honolulu Mission and specifically at Brigham Young University-Hawaii (BYUH). Kathy (Sister Edgar) was assigned to serve as the Visiting Home Nurse for the Married Student Mothers (and their babies), and I was assigned as a BYUH Computer Support Technician. My specific duties were to serve as the Database Administrator of the BYUH Conduct Manager Software. In addition, I often conducted interviews and investigations of reported student Honor Code misconduct; and I taught the Leadership Pattern Classes on campus: “Lead Like the Savior.”
It is difficult for me to put into words the feelings and experience we enjoyed while living and serving in Laie, Hawaii. For centuries, the North Shore of Oahu has been a sacred and special place for native Polynesians. More than 100 years ago, visionary Prophets and Apostles of God came here sensing the area was a spiritual source of faith and strength. Since then, Prophets of God have returned and dedicated this area for the blessings of all God’s children …and that Holy work of God still goes on even today. The Laie Hawaii Temple, the Brigham Young University-Hawaii (BYUH), and the Polynesian Cultural Center are all closely knit together and united in purpose to continue the Holy Work of God (to prepare and gather the elect children of God). Through the years, the University moto has been “Enter to Learn Go Forth to Serve.” Students from all over the world (the Pacific Islands, Asia, China, Taiwan, Korea, Southeast Asia, India, Mongolia, North America, Central and South America, Western and Eastern Europe, Africa, and many points between) come to BYUH (speaking more than 70 native languages). They “Enter to Learn” and “Go Forth to Serve.”
It was our humble privilege to work and serve among these great young people. They are part of the noble, raising generation. I am certain, many of these young men and women will become future leaders in the world and in the Kingdom of God.
Brief Mission Homecoming Report
After 23 months serving in the mission field, we returned home on April 2nd, 2019! We then began our “pilgrimage” to revisit our wonderful but dispersed family (and retrieve of little dog Missy from Heather’s house). Those were emotional and exciting time!!! Sister Edgar (Kathy) and I had the time of our lives traveling, visiting, and reconnecting with our children and grandchildren (and Missy). But first, we had an emotional reunion when we first came down the escalator at the Salt Lake Airport to a joyful band of sign-carrying and waving loved ones. It took a few days to settle down after that. But eventually, we got on the road and visited as many loved ones as possible. We traveled to Utah, Nevada, California, and Arizona (Kathy even flew to Massachusetts to visit her folks). This was an emotional and joyful period for us, but it was also very stressful. We missed our friends and life in Hawaii; we missed the honor of wearing our missionary name tags; our daily routines had changed; we suffered a little from jetlag; and we had (and still have) much to do to reconnect with reality. But it is so wonderful to have family and friends …and to be loved. We have much to be thankful for, and we have Hope in the future! We love the Lord; we love our family and friends …and the Gospel is True. Hurrah for Israel! We are so very blessed.
Currently, we are working and still trying to settle down. Kathy has been hired at Cedar City Hospital (Intermountain Healthcare) as a Labor & Delivery Nurse and a Lactation Consultant. I am retired and work as a “Hobbyist” around the home. We bought a nice house in the City of Enoch, UT (see the note below). We moved into our home July 1st, 2019. Life is good! The Cedar City area is wonderful; we love the people in our Enoch 6th Ward and neighborhood, we love the new Cedar City Utah Temple; and it appears the city is at geographical crossroads for our family. Now, isn’t that convenient? Hurrah, Hurrah for Israel!
Note: If you thought the City of Enoch had been translated, well maybe you’re right (Genesis 5:21-24 and Moses 7:69, 21). But it may have returned … perhaps to pick up a few more travelers. I don’t know for sure!
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