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W.M. (Marv) TuddenhamJuly 8, 1924 ~ August 24, 2017 (age 93)
I have resisted writing my own obituary since it has always seemed to be somewhat self-aggrandizing. But, at the urging of my loved ones, I have decided to leave a farewell message. I have received the great personal blessing of life, for which I thank the Lord. I have also had many very positive things happen to me, as well as some negative things. I consider it all to have been a blessing rather than something specifically directed my way, since I firmly believe that the rain falls both on the just and the unjust. It has been a great ride, for which I give thanks to the Lord, my family and my associates. I don’t need to dump the whole load on you. Those who know me know my strengths and weaknesses and don’t need to be reminded, and the rest of you don’t care. (8/11/17)
William Marvin Tuddenham died of pancreatic cancer, Aug. 24, 2017, in Salt Lake City, Utah, at age 93, with his characteristic wit and wisdom intact until the end. He was born July 8, 1924, to Laura Pack Tuddenham and William Calder Tuddenham. He was raised with his sister Jean in Salt Lake City. He married Dorothy Evelyn Snelgrove on May 1, 1945, in the Salt Lake Temple. They had four children: William Marvin Jr., Bill (Cindy); Mary Alice Milan (Bill); Evelyn; Laurie Bagley (Steve); eight grandchildren and eight great grandchildren. Preceded in death by his sister Jean, son Bill and wife, Dorothy. On November 22, 2003, he married Ellen Johnson and his family increased by four children and their spouses, 15 grandchildren and 22 great grandchildren. Marv served his country as an Ensign in the U.S. Navy during WWII. He received a Ph.D. in Fuels Technology from the University of Utah; he spent most of his career doing metallurgical research at Kennecott Copper. A faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he served in many callings including bishop and his favorite calling, Scoutmaster. In 2004, Marv fulfilled his lifelong dream of being an LDS missionary when he and Ellen were called to the Colorado Colorado Springs Mission.
Funeral services will be held on Thurs., Aug. 31, 11 a.m., Canyon Rim Stake Center, 3051 S. 2900 E. Viewings will be held Wed., Aug. 30, 6 to 7:30 p.m., Holbrook Mortuary, 3251 S. 2300 E., and at the church on Thurs., Aug. 31, 10-10:45 a.m., prior to the service. Interment at Salt Lake City Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the LDS Missionary Fund or the University of Utah Department of Chemistry. Online condolences may be shared at: www.HolbrookMortuary.com
Marv contributed to more than 30 scientific papers, received seven patents, and edited and co-authored numerous books and other publications. He served as Chairman of the Salt Lake City Public Utilities Commission and a member of the Mayor’s Budget Advisory Committee. In 1974, he received an award from the Salt Lake and Central Utah Sections of the American Chemical Society for his research and efforts to upgrade the chemical profession. He received the Silver Beaver award, in 1976, from the Great Salt Lake Council of the Boy Scouts of America for his more than 30-year contribution to Scouting. Beginning in 1995, Marv introduced youngsters to his love of science as an Enrichment Program Coordinator at Lincoln Elementary.
Marv was tolerant, kind, intelligent, inquisitive, forgiving and patient. He had the ability to make his family members, friends and charges feel special and believe that each of us were his “favorite.” He was a faithful and supportive husband to his wife, Dorothy, and a guiding influence for his children. When he married Ellen, he embraced Ellen’s family as his own and they embraced him.
Throughout his life he enjoyed discussing philosophy and world events and he continued to do so with visitors who came to bid him farewell during his illness. His fundamental compassion for others, his intellect and his humor never waned. Although Marv was prone to lapsing into long discussions, he appreciated brevity in meetings of any kind and threatened to haunt us with a “return from the great beyond wearing an asbestos suit,” if his funeral lasted for more than an hour.
He lived his life with conviction, integrity and humility, and rarely spoke of his own accomplishments. Marv saw himself, first, as a teacher, guiding and supporting others. He adhered to the strength of belief bolstered by faith, and loved the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints with all his heart. He believed in the importance of the church organization in supporting and nurturing the spirit of its members.
Although Marv experienced many challenges and disappointments in his life, he shunned pain in favor of optimism and a positive attitude. He taught us to respect everyone, regardless of their station in life; to love nature as well as each other; to search for truth, but to be skeptical of quick answers and simple solutions; and to be true to ourselves. The world is a better place for his having been here, and we are better people for having him in our lives.