History of Lila Gull, by Lila Gull
One cold and wintery day, January 8, 1917, I was born to Dora Stewart and Angus Leonard Gull in the little town of Farmington, Utah. When I was three years old, we moved to Willard, Utah. At that time my father had bought a fruit farm along with his brother Charles. I lived on this farm until I was married.
During my childhood I had a lot of fun. My cousins and I and some neighbor kids used to really have a good time. In the summer we played games and in the winter we went sleigh riding. There was a good hill by us and we really had a lot of fun during the wintertime coasting on it. We would also tie our sleighs to the back of a bobsled and go for a ride that way.
When I was eight years old, I was baptized a member of the Church by James Tams and confirmed by Irving Perry. During that year we moved to Price, Utah, where my father worked in a coal mine. The summer that we moved there, I fell out of a cherry tree and broke my arm. I went to the third grade in Price. We rented our apartment from an old Italian lady who could not speak any English. She would have me go to the store for her and in return she used to bring Italian food to me, but I would not even taste it until just a short time before we moved back to Willard.
In the summers I would get up in the morning about five to help Mother pick raspberries. The days we did not pick, I would pick for the neighbors, that way I would earn a little money. My mother was a much better fruit picker than I was, so she helped my father and I sold the fruit at our fruit stand.
When I was ten, I started taking piano lessons from a lady in Ogden. My uncle Charles drove a school bus and every Saturday we all would go to Ogden to shop and go to a show. I would take my piano lesson and then go to the show and then meet the family and come home.
I remember when I was about five years old, I slept upstairs. Our house frame was attached to a brick home. Between the house there was a pack rat. I would hear that rat run up and down dropping things. I was scared to death. One night he got in my room and moved a baby-sized doll from my high chair to the floor. My father laid for the rat after that and finally killed it.
When I was thirteen, my sister Shirley was born. It was during the depression so I quit taking piano lessons. It was nice to have a little sister. When she was one year old, I got the whooping cough and gave it to her. In the first grade Shirley got the chicken pox and scarlet fever and, of course, she gave the whole family scarlet fever. I was out of beauty school four weeks.
I went to school at Willard and high school at Box Elder in Brigham. I rode a school bus to school all my life. We lived about 1 1/4 miles from school and six miles from high school.
When I graduated from high school, I applied to the Dee Hospital to become a nurse. After my physical examination, they turned me down because of my feet. They said that I would not be able to stand on my feet for the long hours that are required or a nurse. That summer I worked in the cannery and then during the winter I went to Ogden and did house work for a family. I did not like it very much but I needed the money. They had twin girls, nine months old, and a little boy about four. I liked the twins but I did not like the little boy to well. When summer came, I went to work at the cannery again. In September I started my beauty course. It took me about a year to complete. I lived in Ogden all the time. After I graduated and got my license, I worked in Ogden, part of the time living at home and the other time with a girl friend and her mother.
When I was working in Ogden, I went home for Thanksgiving. I went to the dance during the holiday and a young fellow by the name of Baird Nelson asked me to dance. I knew his brothers but only who he was. I kidded with him and he made a date for Christmas Eve. That started my life with Baird. I was going with another fellow at the time but after a few dates with Baird, I knew he was the one I wanted. He was working in Provo at that time. I went with Baird for one year and three months and then we were married in the Salt Lake Temple, March 28, 1940.
We started our married life living in Willard. He was teaching in the CC Camp in Brigham. A short time later he got a job with the State Road but working nights. I worked in the daytime. Baird would get home at five in the morning and I would have to get up for work at six and he would leave before I would get home. I finally quit my job so I could be with him a little more. Then he got on days.
In December 1940 we moved to Moab and lived there eleven months. Baird was the engineer for a CC Camp there. It was very hot in Moab during the summer. Every night we would go to the softball games. That was about all the recreation there was. We were the chaperons for the M-Men and Gleaners on an over night camping trip in the La Salle Mountains. It was beautiful. It rained during the night and we were sleeping out. What fun!
In November 1941 we moved to Salt Lake City where Baird went to work for the Army Engineers. We lived in a rented house until February 1942 at which time we bought our first house at 832 Elgin Avenue. We moved into the house six weeks before our first child was born. Carol was born on April 12, 1942. Our second child was born on May 16, 1945. We just had the two children, Carol and Leonard. Before Leonard was born, Baird started to work for the U.S. Geological Survey where he was working when he passed away.
During my married life when I would get sick, Mother always came out and helped even though she was working. She was always so good to help out in such situations. She also stayed with the kids when I went to Texas with Baird for three weeks while he attended a special schooling. That was about the only time that we went on a trip without the kids.
In 1954 we bought another house just up the street from where we were living, 854 Elgin Ave. We also owned a piece of property on Ninth East which was just a weed patch. This piece of property was part of a subdivision that went through in 1956. We ended up with 4 lots, one of which we sold. In 1956 we built a duplex with Mother. We lived in one side and she lived in the other. In 1957 we built another duplex for rental property. Then in 1959 we built our present home which Baird was never privileged to live in. Just before it was completed in June, he went to southern Utah on one of his field trips. He was involved in an accident and was killed instantly. It was a great shock to me to see him that morning and never to see him alive again in this life. It has been eight long years since that accident and I have tried to make a new life for myself. I had to finish rearing our two children, Carol 17 and Leonard 14. It was rather hard but I continued on. I did not need to work for I was left a sufficient income to live on.
When Leonard was two years old, I started teaching junior Sunday school. I taught for about 3 years. A few years later I became garment representative for the Relief Society. I held that position until 1956 when I was asked to be Relief Society Secretary. I was secretary for four years when I became 1st Counselor to Erma Allen. After her husband was made Bishop of our ward, I became the President of the Relief Society and served for two years. It was a very pleasant two years. It took a lot of work and time but I enjoyed it very much. When Leonard was eight, I was the Den Mother in the cub scouts. I worked in that job two years. He was a small den but the best in the ward. I am now teaching the Gaynotes in Primary. I love the girls and enjoy the work. I am also going to the Temple once a week.
After I was released from Relief Society President, I went to school to become a nurse. I attended one and a half years at BYU but because of my health I decided to quit. It was a good experience but I guess I was not to become a nurse. I learned many things which will help me the rest of my life.
I have taken several vacations. When the kids were small we went on trips to Yellowstone, through the Northwest, to the Canyons in Utah and the Grand Canyon, and to California. I made several trips to southern Utah with Baird, one which was the year before he died. I really a had a good time. Once I went to Texas with Baird and left the kids with Mother. That is about the only time we left the kids at home with Mother while we went on a trip. Since Baird's death I have gone on a Temple Tour through Utah, Arizona and California. I also have gone to Hawaii with the Allens. It was really a wonderful trip and I plan to take a few more such trips.
Every year in June, several of us go down to the BYU for Education Week. It really gives a person an uplift. We all look forward to June each year.
I have received many blessings through the Priesthood and because of my faith my life was spared. When I was about 18 years old, I started with gull stone attacks which are very painful. The attacks would not come too often but when they came, I was really sick. It finally ended up in an emergency operation in 1953 which nearly took my life. Through the power of the Priesthood and my faith, I was spared to live and raise my two children. I have seen the Priesthood help my family many times. If it had not been for our faith and the power of the Priesthood, I do not believe we would have raised Leonard to adulthood as he was very ill when only ten days old. Many babies were dying from a diarrhea type of sickness at this time.
My membership in this church has meant a great deal to me and means more to me every day. It was through the Church that I was able to accept Baird's death. It was made me try to live so that I will be found worthy to live with him again in the life to come.