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Harold B. Lee was born 28 March 1899 in Clifton, Franklin County, Idaho, United States to Samuel Marion Lee (1875-1947) and Louisa Emaline Bingham (1879-1959) and died 26 December 1973 Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, United States of unspecified causes. He married Fern Lucinda Tanner (1895-1962) 14 November 1923 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, United States. He married Freda Johanna Jensen (1897-1981) 17 June 1963 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, United States. William I of England (1027-1087), Hugh Capet (c940-996), Alfred the Great (849-899)/s, Charlemagne (747-814)/s, Henry II of England (1133-1189)/s, Hugh Capet (c940-996)/s, William I of England (1027-1087)/s, Rollo of Normandy (860-932)/s.


Biography

Harold Bingham Lee was an American religious leader and educator who served as the eleventh president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) from July 1972 until his death in December 1973.

Early Life

Lee was born in Clifton, Idaho to Samuel Lee and Louisa Emeline Bingham and was the second of six children. The Lee family lived the rural life and Lee and his siblings spent most of their youth doing farm chores. During his childhood, his mother saved him from several near-death experiences.

Civic Service

In 1932, at the age of thirty-three, Lee became a community leader when he was appointed to fill a vacancy in the Salt Lake City Commission.[1] He was assigned to direct the Department of Streets and Public Improvements. A year later his political career was launched when he was elected to the same position.[1] In subsequent years Utah citizens unsuccessfully sought to persuade him to run for governor or the United States Senate.

Church Service

In 1930, Lee was called as president of the LDS Church's Pioneer Stake in Salt Lake City. He became the youngest stake president in the church, at that time, when he was set apart.[1] The 1929 Great Depression in the United States left more than half of its members without jobs. He established a welfare program to aid members in distress that became a model emulated by the entire LDS Church. As part of the program, he helped organize the Pioneer Stake bishop's storehouse in 1932. The storehouse provided members with basic food necessities. Bishop's storehouses remain part of the church's welfare program today. In 1936, Lee became managing director of the Church Welfare Program. Although he also pursued a political career, he began full-time church service when he was called to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in 1941.


Lee's presidency proved one of the briefest in the history of the church, lasting from July 7, 1972 to Lee's sudden death due to a fatal pulmonary hemorrhage on December 26, 1973 at age 74. Lee was buried at Salt Lake City Cemetery. Spencer W. Kimball, exactly four years Lee's senior and seen as being in worse health, would lead the church for the next dozen years.

When McKay died in 1970, Joseph Fielding Smith became church president and Lee was called as First Counselor in the First Presidency. He continued to gain practical experience for what was expected to be a long presidency of his own, given the fact that he was twenty-four years younger than Smith. In 1972, Smith died and Lee became the church's president. Later that year, he organized the Jerusalem Branch and presided over the church's second area conference, held in Mexico.

Lee's presidency proved one of the briefest in the history of the church, lasting from July 7, 1972 to Lee's sudden death due to a fatal pulmonary hemorrhage on December 26, 1973 at age 74. Lee was buried at Salt Lake City Cemetery. Spencer W. Kimball, exactly four years Lee's senior and seen as being in worse health, would lead the church for the next dozen years.

Marriage & Family

While on his mission, Lee met a sister missionary from Utah, Fern Lucinda Tanner. They renewed their acquaintance when they returned from their missions and were married on November 14, 1923 in the Salt Lake Temple. Fern died in 1962 and on June 17, 1963 Lee married Freda Joan Jensen, a former mission companion's girlfriend who had never married. She died on July 1, 1981.



Children


Offspring of Harold B. Lee and Fern Lucinda Tanner (1895-1962)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Maurine Lee (1924-1965)
Helen Lee (1925-2000)



Siblings


Offspring of Samuel Marion Lee (1875-1947) and Louisa Emaline Bingham (1879-1959)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Samuel Perry Lee (1896-1978)
Harold Bingham Lee (1899-1973) 28 March 1899 Clifton, Franklin County, Idaho, United States 26 December 1973 Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, United States Fern Lucinda Tanner (1895-1962)
Freda Johanna Jensen (1897-1981)
Clyde Bingham Lee (1902-1953)
Waldo Bingham Lee (1905-1959)
Stella Bingham Lee (1907-1974)
Verda Bigham Lee (1910-1991)


Vital Records

Gravestone of Harold B Lee at Salt Lake Cemetery

Published Works

Lee, Harold B. (1945). Youth and the Church (retitled Decisions for Successful Living). Deseret News. —— (1974). Stand Ye in Holy Places: Selected Sermons and Writings of President Harold B. Lee. Deseret Book. —— (1974). Ye Are the Light of the World: Selected Sermons and Writings of President Harold B. Lee. Deseret Book. —— (1996). Clyde J. Williams, ed. Teachings of Harold B. Lee, Eleventh President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Bookcraft. —— (2000). Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Harold B. Lee. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. LDS Church publication number 35892.

References

 





Footnotes (including sources)

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