John Cutler of Kirtland, Ohio

“John Cutler of Kirtland, Ohio,” Friend, July 1989, 8

Making Friends:

John Cutler of Kirtland, Ohio

An only child, John Cutler (7) still has “lots of family.” Besides his parents, he has cousins nearby, and they do things together. He loves his grandparents, both those in Ohio and those in California.

John loves to sing and dance with his mom and go to the Whitney Store Museum with his dad, who serves as a guide there during the busy tourist season. In the fall, the three of them have fun going to another Church historical site, the Johnson farm in Hiram, to pick apples.

In a family home evening lesson, John was excited to learn that several of his ancestors were Church members who had lived in Kirtland, Ohio; Nauvoo, Illinois; and early Salt Lake City, Utah; and that they had helped build temples in those cities. One of them, his sixth-great-grandfather, Levi Ward Reed, was the first bishop of North Point Ward, which was organized in Salt Lake City in 1887. According to an article in the Church News, Bishop Reed was beloved by everyone because of his great kindnesses to all, especially the poor.

His friends love John for the same reason: He loves to help people, especially little children. He and his dad built a sandbox for the neighborhood kids to play in, and by the time that it was ready to be filled with sand, it was already full—of kids!

John converted his wagon into a time machine. He loves to pull his friends from “now” into “the past” or “the future,” where they have many adventures together.

No matter what the game is, John wants everyone to be included in the fun. And he’s upset if anyone is left out, whether it’s playing soccer at recess; baseball, whenever there’s time for it; or watching movies and eating popcorn in the “tent” (a blanket draped over a table) that Mom lets him set up in the family room after school.

John likes his computer club at school, reading—his favorite book is The Magic Fish—making brownies and cookies, eating Mexican food (and brownies and cookies!), and taking trips with his family. Because he knows that it’s important, he even likes doing chores. He keeps his room neat, brings the trash can in from the street, takes care of the neighbors’ fish when they’re away, and clears the dinner dishes from the table.

When his mom had a garage sale, John put out a number of his still-usable toys. Some professional women on a tour from Nigeria bought most of them to take back home with them, and John was thrilled to know that he was sharing his things with little children so far away.

John is proud that some of his heroes are his very own ancestors, but surely his ancestors are very proud of him too.

Leaning against the wall next to his bed and rereading his favorite book

Chocolate chip cookies coming up!

John and neighborhood friends enjoying the sandbox

Friends checking out the garage sale

In the computer club room

Learning about things in the Whitney Store Museum