Friend to Friend
January 1978

“Friend to Friend,” Friend, Jan. 1978, 6

Friend to Friend

“He never expected us to do anything he wouldn’t do.”

“Dad always expected us to be on time. When we rode to early morning seminary with him, he’d back the car out of the driveway very slowly, and if we weren’t ready to get in the car by the time he had crossed the sidewalk, he’d slowly drive down the street past two or three houses. If we weren’t out to the car by that time, we were left.”

“Hopperville! That’s where the grasshoppers used to live. Dad told us a story about two grasshoppers. One was Crooked Hopper who never did things right and the other was Straight Hopper who always tried to do the right thing. Crooked Hopper repented and became a straight hopper in the end. It was one of our favorite stories.”

“‘Be dependable,’ Dad always encouraged us. When we went to school Dad made us realize we were where we ought to be on that day.”

“His mother and father were called Poppy and Nonny. Poppy was a very generous man, who loaned things to people and brought extra company home to dinner. Dad recalls that whenever this happened, his mother would have to add a little more water to the soup so there would be enough to go around.”

“My father is a most competitive man. He doesn’t like to lose. We used to play a game where the loser would have to do the dishes and, according to the rules, Dad often did them.”

“Does he have any hobbies?” I inquired.

“His ideal vacation would be thirty-six holes of golf a day and maybe some tennis after. He loves golf and tennis. We have shoveled snow many times from tennis courts so that we could play a game.”

“People are really his hobby. He loves to help others, loves to talk to them and listen to them. He is a great counselor to his family and also to many others who come to him for advice.”

“He really enjoys ice cream, buttermilk, and peanuts.”

“Physically, Mom keeps up with Dad. They stay in good health because they both are so active. Mother exemplifies the word service. She can’t do enough—whatever Dad needs, she’s right there to help him. She is a modest, selfless woman who has been the best wife and mother anyone could ask for.”

“Dad believes in hard work and in staying out of debt. He put himself through college and saved his own money for a mission. Mom and Dad’s engagement period was spent building their first house, so they wouldn’t be in debt.”

“When Dad speaks at conferences or on other assignments, he loves to talk about the application of gospel principles. He’s down to earth in his approach to problems, and uses common sense in analyzing the many possibilities of a situation.”

“Grandpa takes me up to the cabin where we get to see the ducks and ride the horses,” said a grandchild.

“What does your grandma like to cook?” I asked.

“She makes chocolate cake with whipped cream between the layers, and drips chocolate on the top. Sometimes it’s a birthday cake and everybody wants to blow out the candles.”

“Dad has the philosophy that if he teaches us correct principles, we can govern ourselves. He shows his love to us through his confidence in us.”

“One of the most memorable experiences for our family was when Dad was called to be an apostle. He is so worthy, so willing to serve, a truly great man.”

  • This General Authority’s name is Marvin J. Ashton of the Council of the Twelve.

Illustrated by Arlene Braithwaite