- About Us
Dean Menlo AustinApril 23, 1927 ~ July 3, 2017 (age 90)
Click below to listen to the funeral service. Available until October 6, 2017.
Dean Menlo Austin, our beloved father, grandfather and great-grandfather, passed away early Monday morning, July 3, 2017, of causes incident to age. As his family, we are very grateful to have had a beautiful celebration with him for his 90th birthday in April.
Dean was born April 23, 1927, in Idaho Falls, Idaho, the only child of Twayne and LaReta Clayton Austin. He was raised primarily in Pocatello, Idaho, and from a young age he spent his summers with his grandparents in Liberty, Idaho, near Bear Lake. Industrious and also ready for adventure, Dean spent those summers riding horses, hunting, camping, reading, and doing lots of farm chores, even helping to make the huckleberry jam he loved. In his teen years, Dean became an Eagle Scout, played basketball and softball, and worked at a variety of jobs, from setting pins in a bowling alley to helping his father at the Pocatello plant of Continental Oil Company. In his late teens, he also took flying lessons in Pocatello.
Dean met Mildred Chandler in their senior year at Pocatello High School and they began courting. They were married in the Idaho Falls temple on September 4, 1947. They became the parents of eight children, whom they raised in Washington D.C., Pocatello, ID, Seattle, WA, and Provo, UT. Dad taught us to work, to have fun, and to do our best in whatever we were doing. More than anything, he shared his love of the gospel of Jesus Christ with us and engendered in each of us a love for the Savior and for service in His Church.
As did most young men his age, Dean enlisted in the armed services before graduating from high school in 1945, and departed for U. S. Navy boot camp the day after graduation. His enlistment was for the duration of the war plus six months, so he had time to complete his training as an Aviation Electronic Technician’s Mate right after the end of the war. Dean then graduated from George Washington University in 1951 with a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering. He began his career after college working for his father as a management trainee for Continental Oil in Pocatello. After his father passed away suddenly in 1952, Dean left Conoco to use his engineering degree at Boeing Aircraft in Seattle. He was project engineer on the Bomarc and Minuteman missile systems. Ever the entrepreneur, he also built his own business designing and installing custom sound systems in Seattle and other locations in the western United States.
In 1968 the Austins moved to Provo, where Dad was the director of the Electronic Media Department at Brigham Young University. In 1977, he went to work in southern California for United Recording Electronics Industries. He managed the recording studio where many popular artists worked, including the Beach Boys, Frank Sinatra, Barry Manilow and Blondie. Following his work at UREI he began his own company, Coast Recording. Dean also volunteered throughout his adult life to take care of the sound, lighting, and recording for many a school and church production.
Ever willing to serve in the Church, Dean was, among other things, a scoutmaster (his favorite calling), a teacher, a stake mission president, a bishop twice, a stake president's counselor, and a member of the General Meetinghouse Library Board of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He and his sweetheart served a full-time mission in Salt Lake City after he retired, and his love for family history was born and increased many-fold through his service as a family history missionary. After Mildred passed away in 1998, a few months after their 50th wedding anniversary, Dean spent many years doing volunteer family history research, preparing temple ordinances to be done for many thousands of people whose names he found. He also loved teaching family history classes to patrons at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. Even at the age of 88, he could be found 6 days a week researching in the Family History Library.
Dean loved to travel. In addition to family travel within the U.S., he and Mildred traveled to Mexico and to the Holy Land, and after Mildred passed away he traveled extensively with his son Randy all over the world. Combining that love of travel with his love of family, he made his way to each of his grandsons’ Eagle Scout courts of honor (always happy to sit in the Eagles Nest), to many of his grandchildren’s high school and college graduations, to all of their weddings, and to many family reunions. His love and support of his posterity have been incredible blessings to them.
Dean is survived by six of his eight children: Kathryn (Eben) Visher, Larry (Paula) Austin, Marjorie (Stephen) Lamb, Michael (Robin) Austin, Mark Austin, and Betsy (Stephen) Duford. He is also survived by 33 grandchildren and 61 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Mildred, his children Marilyn and Randy, and two grandchildren.
The family extends warm appreciation to the loving staff members at the Orem Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing facility, and to the caring medical personnel at the VA hospital and clinic in Salt Lake City, for making the last seventeen months of Dad's life bearable and comfortable.
Funeral services will be held Saturday, July 8th at 2:00 p.m. at the Holbrook Mortuary Chapel, 3251 S. 2300 E., Salt Lake City, with a viewing one hour prior to the services. Interment will be at the Salt Lake City Cemetery. Guestbook to post messages and tributes for the family available at: HolbrookMortuary.com