Death

“There was a family of seven young sisters in Salina.  They were extremely close.  The youngest caught pneumonia and died.  The whole family was stricken by this tragic loss.  The sisters were inconsolable.

“In planning the funeral, the parents wrote Uncle Golden and asked him, as an old family friend, to be the principal speaker.  Golden accepted.

“He drove to Salina on the appointed day.  When he walked into the crowded chapel, he was greeted by the parents but none of the daughters.  Golden asked where they were, and the father said they were still at home, unable to pull themselves together.  Golden told them not to begin the meeting until he returned.

“He walked to the family’s home.  He found the daughters in the living room in a mournful and weeping state.  He offered his condolences to each of them and as he left, he paused at the door and said, ‘May I give you sisters some advice?  I suggest you wash your faces, put on a little makeup, comb your hair and get into your best dresses.  Otherwise, the congregation down at the chapel will think the pretty one died.’” (J. Golden Kimball Stories, p. 106-107).

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President David O. McKay entered the elevtor in the Hotel Utah one day to find a boy who shook the president’s hand with admiring awe.  The young man got off the elevator a floor below Brother McKay's apartment. But when the Prophet, who moved very slowly with the help of a companion, finally exited on his floor, he was surprised to see the same boy standing in the hall panting from his race up the stairway, and with his hand extended for another shake. “I just wanted to shake hands with you once more before you die,” the boy explained (Best-Loved Humor of the LDS People, p. 69).

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J. Golden Kimball died in an automobile accident September 2, 1938, near Reno, Nevada, at age 85 after over 46 years as a General Authority. There was a story going around at his funeral.  

Uncle Golden abruptly arrived at the pearly gates.  Saint Peter was there and said, “Well!  If it isn’t Brother J. Golden Kimball: We finally got you here.”

And Uncle Golden said, “Hell, you had to kill me to do it!” (More J. Golden Kimball Stories, p. 117)