RELIGION

Mary Crandall Hales, wife of Elder Robert D. Hales, dies at age 90

Jan 15, 2023, 8:35 PM | Updated: 8:38 pm
Elder Robert D. Hales leaves with his wife, Mary, from the Sunday afternoon session of general conf...
Elder Robert D. Hales leaves with his wife, Mary, from the Sunday afternoon session of general conference in April 2015. (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
(The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)

SALT LAKE CITY — Mary Crandall Hales, the wife of the late apostle Elder Robert D. Hales, died Sunday at her North Salt Lake home, a spokesperson for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints said. She was 90. Elder Hales died in 2017.

The church said her death was incident to age.

President Russell M. Nelson previously shared that Elder Hales had an undying love for, and devotion to his wife.

“His deepest desire has been to serve Mary,” Pres. Nelson said at the 2017 funeral services for Elder Hales.

Mary Crandall Hales was a native of Utah, born in Salt Lake City on Aug. 6, 1932. She grew up in California alongside her four siblings. She returned to Utah to attend Brigham Young University. She studied nutrition at the university.

Elder Robert D. Hales saw his future wife for the first time when she was boarding a bus for New York. He did not meet her at that time. Elder Hales, according to a news release on Sunday, got a second chance, because he happened to see Mary again the next day at church.

Elder Robert D. Hales and his, Mary at the Brigham Young University Junior Prom in 1953. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)

The two began dating that summer. The couple stretched their days during their education to make time to see each other. Elder Hales attended the University of Utah while Mary Crandall continued her schooling at BYU.

Mary Crandall Hales recounted to the Church News in 1994 what it was like dating Elder Hales.

“One of the qualities that impressed me when we were dating is that he listened to me. My feelings mattered to him, and they still matter,” Mary Crandall Hales said in the interview.

Elder Hales and Mary Crandall Hales went on to have two sons, Stephen and David.

Family photo of the Hales family, David, Elder Hales, Stephen and Mary, 1969. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)

Mary Crandall Hales offered direction to her husband that was evidence of her trust in the Lord and her confidence in her husband. While Elder Hales attended graduate school at Harvard, he was called into a demanding church position. The couple wondered if Elder Hales could balance two time-consuming roles. Mary Crandall Hales said to him, “I’d rather have an active priesthood holder than a man who holds a master’s degree from Harvard. We’ll do them both.” The couple worked things out so their goals would be accomplished.

Elder Hales’ career moved the family residence to multiple far-flung places, including England, Germany and Spain.

Her husband would go to serve as an apostle in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for 23 years, with Mary Crandall Hales at his side.

The date and location for the funeral services for Mary Crandall Hales have not yet been provided.

Elder Robert D. Hales and Mary Hales circa 1975. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)

A more tender moment for Mary and Bob Hales in 1975. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)

Portrait of Mary Crandall Hales, wife of Robert D. Hales. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
Elder Robert D. Hales and his wife, Mary. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)

Elder Robert D. Hales leaves with his wife, Mary, from the Sunday afternoon session of general conference in April 2015. (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
Sister Mary Hales receives the American flag from U.S. Air Force personnel at the graveside service for her husband, Elder Robert D. Hales, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Burial was held at the Bountiful City Cemetery on Friday, October 6, 2017. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)

Sister Mary Hales, wife of Elder Robert D. Hales, waits to enter the Tabernacle for his funeral, Friday, October 6, 2017.
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Mary Crandall Hales, wife of Elder Robert D. Hales, dies at age 90