Bruce Cox Atkin Biography-by Janet Barlow, wife
Contributor: Chynna67 Created: 11 months ago Updated: 11 months ago
Memories from the Life of Bruce Cox Atkin
(as told by his wife, Janet)
Bruce was born the fifth child of Rudger Clawson and Leona Cox Atkin February 6, 1939 the day after his parents wedding anniversary. He had three older brothers, Clayton, Lee and Sid and one older sister, Lou Jean. He had two younger brothers, Warren who died shortly before his first birthday and Ralph.
His family moved into their newly built home at 67 North 300 East just as he was born at the the St. George Hospital between Tabernacle and 100 South on 100 East. Bruce was a happy child with curly blond hair.
Bruce spent many days and weeks during the summertime “out at the ranch” working with cattle and calves with his dad, his Uncle Anthony Atkin and his brothers, Clayton, Lee, Sid and Ralph. They branded, birthed, moved, watered and hauled cattle, dug ponds, dug wells, fixed fences and ate lots of peaches and beans. The guys used terms like Main Street, Shelley Place, big pond, watering truck and water jug.
Bruce had a special relationship with Uncle Joe and Aunt Leila Atkin like Clayton had with Uncle Anthony Atkin. He went on trips with them and after marrying Janet, Bruce drove for Uncle Joe and Aunt Leila as they became less comfortable with driving distances.
Bruce told of a time when he and Sid were kids and had a “difference of opinion.” Most kids call that fighting with a brother. Sid chased Bruce with a sharp knife around the house until Bruce got into the bathroom and locked the door. He did not come out until he knew Sid was outside doing something else after having forgotten about his brother.
As a young boy scout, Bruce served as a cub scout den chief with Max and Sylvia Swapp as den parents. He really liked this calling and grew to love the Swapps. Sylvia told me years later when we lived in the same ward, that Bruce was wonderful at keeping the cubs scouts on task and having fun.
One fall evening when Sid was in England on his mission Bruce and his buddy took Sid’s car off the blocks it was stored on and headed out for a ride to Veyo. They took their shotguns along and did a little deer hunting. They spotted a five point buck just past the main part of town right along side the hiway. Needless to say, this was to good to be true. So taking careful aim, they shot the deer. (Not sure which one actually did the shooting) Immediately lights began to turn on in homes along the hiway. In only a minute and before they were able to load the deer into the trunk of their car, cars began to peel out of houses and headed for the shooting sound. Bruce and his buddy took off speeding along north up the road toward Central. Knowing that they would surely get caught if they continued
speeding along the hiway, they flipped a “U-ie” on the blind side of a turn in the hiway and slowly started back to Veyo. Cars and pickups sped past in the opposite direction headed to catch the poachers who had just shot the Veyo City pet. It seems the deer scavenged along the Veyo city limits every night and the town’s people were proud of their five-point mascot. The buddy told me this story at Bruce’s class reunion a couple years ago. He said he was telling it to me because both he and Bruce made a pact to “never tell anyone” and until telling the story to me he had kept that promise. And to this day, I cannot remember who the buddy was. He did say, “Bruce was not perfect as everyone thought, but a very good normal guy.”
Bruce was a good student and athlete in school. He received a decathlon award and other sports medals. He had many good friends like Mansfield Jennings, Howard Snow, Richard Smith, Marilyn and Carolyn Foremaster, Barbara Shakespear, Barbara Hershey and others. He graduated from Dixie High School in 1957. After high school Bruce joined the Utah National Guard and went to Army Basic Training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma for six months. He won sharpshooter medals in the Utah National Guard
However, this was a problematic time for Bruce. While at basic training he tried opening a soda pop bottle with a pocket knife that slipped and cut the tendon in his left hand that extends up though his wrist and arm. He had several surgeries to repair the tendon which left his left thumb partially paralyzed. However, this did not keep him from doing most normal activities with his left hand. As a result of thumb surgery Bruce developed a blood disorder called histoplasmosis. This blood infection caused Bruce to be hospitalized several times while in basic training and kept him “stateside” rather than go on the overseas mission he was first called to serve.
After basic training Bruce attended Dixie Jr. College until he left for an LDS Church mission. Kent Meeks and Rick Bentley, his cousins who came to Dixie to school were good friends during his college years also. Another college friend was Max Collotzi from Salt Lake City. Bruce had a girl friend, Jean (I don’t know her last name), who he met while attending Dixie College. Bruce was engaged to marry Jean when he left on his mission to the Northwestern States Mission in 1959. She mailed him a “dear john” letter after he had been out on his mission for about a half year.
Bruce spent two years sharing the Gospel with the people he met and loved. He developed stomach ulcers on his mission which caused him stomach pain on-and-off the rest of his life. Bruce was a district leader and got to do lots of traveling for the last six months of his mission. He bought a 1960 green Nash Rambler for his mission traveling which he drove home from his mission in June 1961. Bruce loved the people he met and taught on his mission. He had many good memories of the” best two years of his life.”
Just before returning home from his mission Bruce became very concerned about a marriage partner. He did not want to be single and alone when he came home. After praying about his concern, he had a dream in which he saw the girl he was to marry. This was comfort enough for him because he knew he would recognize her when he saw her.
Bruce drove into St. George returning from his mission as the daily noon fire whistle was blowing on June 30, 1961. He stopped in to see his brother Lee at his dental office because it was right on his way home. He greeted his brother with a hug, looked over his shoulder and saw the girl from his dream. He invited me out for a ride after work that same afternoon. I had come to St. George following high school graduation just a couple weeks before this time to work for Lee in his dental office while attending Dixie College that fall.
Bruce and I went to Zion and Bryce National Parks on the weekend of the July 4th holiday with Lee and Cleo’s family. Later that evening we drove up the airport road on the Black Hill. Bruce proposed to me telling me of his dream. He asked me to pray for confirmation that very night cause he would be calling early to get my answer in the morning. The next morning he was at Lee’s front door looking for me with an answer to his proposal.
From that day we prepared for a wedding. First it was to be the next June and Bruce would attend BYU for the next year. Then it was to be at Christmas time in six months. And then it was settled that Bruce would stay at Dixie for one more year and we would get married as soon as we could get preparations made. We were married on October7, 1961 in the St.George Temple. Bruce was 22 years old and I was 18 years old.
We attended one year at Dixie where Bruce was D-Day Chairman in the spring and graduated from Dixie College in June 1962. We were good students both of us being on the honor roll and enjoyed attending many of the same classes. Bruce especially liked English Literature. He was gifted at memorizing scriptures and verse. He memorized “The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner” for a class at school. We had lunch nearly every day at Mom and Dad Atkin’s house so Bruce could get the best food to calm his stomach ulcers. Every afternoon after classes he changed into work clothes and went to the feedlot behind the saddle of the Black Hill to feed the wintering cows and calves, spreading bales of hay with a pitchfork the length of the cement troughs.
Mom and Dad Atkin were always very good to Bruce and me. But there was one morning when we both wished Dad was a little less anxious to start the day with work. We were still asleep up in the apartment above Grandma Susie. Dad Atkin just came up the steps through his mom’s house and walked into the bedroom and told Bruce to get up and quit wasting the day as there was work to be done over at the corral. I pulled up the covers, but Bruce just jumped out of bed, pulled on shirt, pants and shoes and went with Dad to get some work done.
We taught a Sunday School class of 12-15 year olds that school year. We attended the temple nearly every Thursday night having the opportunity to participate in the evening sessions. We lived in Grandma Susie’s upstairs apartment that school year and often walked through the back lot to Mom and Dad Atkin’s house. A few times when we didn’t have much homework we spent the evening playing Rook with some of the toughest players of all. Mom and Dad Atkin kept track in their heads of the cards already played and who played which suit and were formidable opponents.
Bruce loved to sing as he drove along in the car. He probably learned this from his family, but I know he sang with me and our kids on every driving trip. He would sing his two favorites, “You Are My sunshine” and “There Once Was a Farmer” before singing any other songs. Then he would move on to such cowboy campfire songs as “Tumbling Tumbleweeds”and “Utah Trails”. The whole family especially loved singing and doing the actions to “Popcorn Popping On The Apricot Tree.”
We always kept a hymnal in the car because our family always sang hymns as we drove anywhere, but especially on long trips such as driving back to Nebraska through the mountains of Wyoming and Colorado, through towns and cities like Cheyenne, Laramie, Rifle, Vail, Denver and Rocky Mountain National Park, or on touring trips through South Dakota’s Black Hills. On our way back to Utah from Nebraska to visit the Stoki family or when we went through Idaho and Wyoming to Yellowstone National Park we sang familiar songs. We sang our way back to his mission areas of Oregon, Washington and Idaho when we returned in 1967 for a visit. On this trip, we went to the premier of the movie “Paint Your Wagon” with Clint Eastwood and Lee Marvin in Portland, Oregon where we saw many movie stars. We left Julie and Ann who were small children at the motel with a babysitter. They were so tired from digging clams on the ocean shore earlier that day. Cris was just a babe and was left back at home in Cedar with our friends Art and Sherry Bohman.
During the next few years, Bruce attended National Guard Summer Camp at Camp Williams in Salt Lake City for two weeks every June. He was a cook chef for the guard and loved cooking meals and treats for the men. That also meant he was on active duty four weekends a year and reported every Tuesday night for reserve drills and meetings where he always made treats for the men. Since he polished his shoes every day, a talent he refined on his mission, his army boots were always spit polished and shined like glass when he went to “Nasty Guard.” He cooked in either the St. George Armory, Provo Armory or Cedar City Armory every Tuesday night until he was honorably released in 1966. He earned several marksman awards while in the Guard. His sharp eye probably developed from shooting rabbits out at the ranch or shooting deer in Veyo. He enjoyed the comradery and service in the Guard but was relieved when is duty term was completed.
After graduating from Dixie college, Bruce attended BYU from June 1962 through August 1963 when he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in finance and banking. Bruce played men’s slow pitch during the summers on the ward team. Since the games were always on Thursday night, he never was quite prepared enough for his calculus tests given every Friday during that first summer. That was the only class he repeated or had to redo for a better grade during his college years. Of course this was at a time when the slide rule was the means of working math solutions. This was before the time of calculators and computers. Oh, how he hated using that slide rule.
Bruce was the ward clerk to Bishop Winterton for the time we lived in Provo and attended BYU. We lived in either Wymount Village or Wymount Terrace in Provo on the BYU campus. Rent was $27 a month plus $4 for a rented couch, dresser and bed. We lived the first summer in Wymount Village and then moved to Wymount Terrace. Our first daughter, Julie, was born April 2, 1963 in Provo while Bruce was attending BYU. At the end of the Spring semester Julie and I returned to St. George and lived in Mom and Dad Atkin’s basement apartment while Bruce completed his final courses to graduate and where our family stayed until moving to Cedar City in 1965.
After graduation, Bruce moved back to St. George as assistant manager at the Sugarloaf Café learning the cafe business from Sid. During the next year and a half Bruce worked with Sid as the Sugarloaf in Cedar City was being planned and built. During that time he was a member of the Rotary International Service Club attending the meetings at the cafe with his dad every week. He was a stake missionary and had a wonderful companion, Merlin. They worked together teaching and baptizing a man who mined at Silver Reef along with some of his family.
Our second daughter, Ann, was born March 10, 1963 in St. George. When Ann was born, my mother, Anna Stoki came to visit for a week or so to help keep the household in working order. Mama also came and helped when Cris and Stephanie were born in Cedar. We loved her help.
One time while we lived in St. George the brothers all went to Lee’s pig farm out in the Washington Fields to load pigs for a delivery somewhere. During the loading process a huge pig stepped sideways and scraped down Bruce’s shin tearing the flesh from his knee to his foot. Sid reported that all Bruce called out was, “Oh my goodness!” as he stumbled off the back of the loading ramp to the ground. Bruce never lost his temper or swore. He laughed a lot and maintained a positive attitude most of the time.
When the new Sugar Loaf Cafe was completed in March 1965 our family moved to Cedar City where Bruce managed the new café. Sid and Bruce worked closely together as the café business improved and successfully paid off the building loan in just a couple years. Ramona Esplin who owned Zion Floral designed the decor of the café dining room which was called the Rudger Room. It had a pictorial story of the Rudger Atkin family on the prominent dining room wall. Four seasonal mountain scene water color paintings hung in the café that were painted by a local art professor Tomas Leek. The fall picture of Strawberry Point on Cedar Mountain still hangs in our home.
We seldom got to see the Stoki side of the family more than once a year when either they drove to Utah or we drove back to Lincoln. In the fall of 1965 Bruce, Julie, Ann and myself caught the train in Salt Lake City and rode the train back to Nebraska for a visit. It was such great fun to ride through the mountains and look out the vista dome of the train and see the mountains all around us. After being in Lincoln for only a day, Sid called and asked Bruce to return to help purchase the Kanaraville farm for a feeding place for the Atkin cows. We boarded the train and returned right away much to my great dismay since we had plans for a Stoki family reunion with brothers and sisters while we were in Lincoln. Bruce and Sid always were devoted to each other and worked well together in the family cafe business.
In 1969 a banquet room was added to the Cedar café. It was called the Iron Room. It had a wonderful large wall hanging made of metal nails pounded into the mapped shape of Iron County with the topography indicated by the length of the nails. The Iron Room was the location of weekly Lion Club and Chamber of Commerce meetings which Bruce loved to attend and the monthly Escalante Knife and Fork Club meetings. Ross Glass was instrumental in getting Bruce back involved in Lions Club when we moved to Cedar. Bruce loved the service orientation of the Lions Club and the friends he had there.
Many National Park tour buses stopped in to eat at the cafe along with other tourists and many local people. During the years Bruce was at the Cedar Sugar Loaf he made many great friends among employees at the café. At one time Bruce got an aquarium full of fish from the cook at the cafe. Bruce loved working at the café and traveling down to St. George weekly to meet with Sid to work on cafe business.
A couple times when we lived in Cedar City, Dad Atkin and all his sons would take a trip to get away for a father and sons outing. One of these outings was to the four corners area of Utah, Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona. The guys all enjoyed each others company and made good memories together discussing both ranch and café family businesses along their way.
At a time when our ward was raising money to build a new stake chapel, Bruce sold tickets for broasted chicken suppers, a Sugarloaf specialty at the café, donating all the money collected to benefit the ward building fund. At that time ward members raised half the cost of any new building. He was so excited to give the check to the bishop, which raised money for our ward’s share of the cost of the new stake chapel.
During the next few years a son, Cris Rudger born April 5, 1966 and a daughter, Stephanie, born November 30, 1967 joined the family. That meant Bruce was even more busy not only with the new café but with a growing family as well.
Bruce loved to play with the kids. He would roll on the floor and tickle the kids until they were about to cry. He played a form of soccer kick ball with the kids out on the lawn. He bought bicycles for all of the family including me one year for Christmas. It was an interesting year when for Christmas Bruce bought a movie camera and projector for me to record family activities. I also bought the same movie camera for Bruce for Christmas. We both wanted to surprise the other with our gift. He loved to take 8mm home movies to record the kids’ fun and growth. We have now combined most of the 8mm movies on a VHS tape. The rolls of film were later all lost in a fire.
Bruce always had a pickup with a cattle cage insert with Sugar Loaf Café painted on the side door to do both ranch and café business. He took Atkin Cattle Company beef to the butcher in Cedar to have meat cut up and prepared for family use and for the café. One time he got a new red pickup truck. He commented that he was not so much in love with the color as he just needed a new pickup. Four year old Ann slipped into the garage, picked out a can of blue house paint and proceeded to brush a fresh color of paint onto Bruce’s new pickup. When Bruce got up from his 30-minute power nap, which he indulged in nearly every day after lunch, he helped Ann get some rags and paint remover and clean the paint off. He never raised his voice, scolded or punished Ann. He praised Ann for thinking of a good color for the new pickup. But, he told Ann, it was the wrong kind of paint for pickups. Then they cleaned up the paint from the truck and the sidewalk together. Bruce never lost his temper or swore.
Bruce went out to the Kanaraville Ranch to water and check on the cattle several times a week. Sometimes the family would all ride along. We all loved the fish pond where we swam during the hot times in the summer in the thick pond moss. We ‘went fishing’ and caught the fish that were stalked in the pond each Spring. The kids loved playing down in the barn and in the basement where there was always Cream Soda that Sid and MaryAnn brought up to enjoy. I bet they wondered where all the Cream Soda disappeared to. At the Kanaraville Ranch I had my only experience helping round-up cattle, riding a cutting horse that knew what to do without any help from me. I just hung on to the saddle horn for dear life as the horse worked with the Atkin boys gathering the cattle to move. At the Kanarraville Ranch we drove up and around Bumblebee Mountain riding on the front fenders of the newly repainted navy blue Nash and later the brown Oldsmobile wagon with 22 shotguns, rabbit hunting and letting the kids take turns learning to “drive”.
One afternoon as our family was at the Kanaraville Ranch where Bruce was changing the water irrigation pipes, the kids came in screaming there was a snake outside the back door. Bruce took a shovel and chopped the head off a rattlesnake and then cut off its rattles to scare and play with the kids. We knew the snake was dead even though the sun had not yet set and the snake had not turned over. Bruce told the kids the snake was, “bad, bad, bad.” Cris later told me he knew that snakes were very bad because his dad had told him that not telling the truth was “bad” and “...the devil was bad, bad” and sense the snake was three “bads” it must be very very bad. Even as an adult Cris is still frightened of snakes.
The kids always enjoyed riding Andy and Goldie, the Kanaraville horses. The horses always stood out by a tree along the road. So the kids called the tree “Andy & Goldie’s Kissin’ Tree.” Ann and Julie would climb the rail fence and call the horses and to come over to the fence. Then the kids would climb onto the horses for a ride. Andy was the favorite because Goldie had only one speed which was “slow”.
While Bruce was a counselor to Bishop Willis we hosted a beef fondue dinner out at the Kanaraville Ranch setting up enough card tables and chairs for ward leaders and their spouses with a heated oil pan on each table to cook the beef steak chunks for tasty niblets along with salad and baked potatoes. Everyone loved “doing the fondue”.
While living in Cedar Bruce discovered he had many allergies along with the hay fever he had from youth. Starting in 1968 he took shots weekly to avoid bouts of welts, sneezing, coughing and watering eyes. He was allergic to the wool rugs in the house that had to be replaced which of course did not break my heart as we had to get new carpet and drapes to match.
During the years 1965-1970 Bruce was busy with many activities outside of work, which included his National Guard duty, one-year President of the Cedar City Chamber of Commerce, advisor to the Shakespear Festival Endowment Committee, bishopric counselor and finally bishop of the Cedar City Twelfth Ward. He also was the Iron County campaign chairman for Senator Wallace Bennett.
He sold and delivered industrial cleaning supplies to many restaurants in southern Utah along the Hiway 91 and 89 corridors. He would take one of the kids who was not in diapers along with him on his sales and delivery trips. He did not “do diapers”.
As Bruce made daily banking runs for the café he usually took one of the kids. One day Bruce took the three older kids on his bank run and opened bank accounts and got social security numbers for each of them. They were so excited to have there own bank books to show they were saving money. Bruce also baked chocolate chip, peanut butter or snicker doodle cookies most Sunday afternoons with the he and the kids eating almost as many raw cookies as got baked.
While Bruce was working in the Chamber of Commerce he arranged for the Five-County Organization to work with the Cedar Chamber to black top the road into the Kolob Canyon Fingers area just off I-15 near New Harmony, creating a more accessible route into that area of Zion National Park. This opened
an area for tourists that previously had only been accessible on a dirt trail and mostly by horseback.
Bruce loved going for daily afternoon rides in Cedar Valley with our family or with Delbert Stapley, a counselor in the stake presidency. He treasured the gospel discussions he enjoyed with not only Pres. Stapely, but with other church leaders as well.
Sometimes in the evenings Bruce and I would play Rook or Chinese Checkers with Margie and Howard Snow or go to movies at the Cedar theater. We loved watching Dr. Zivago together one night, but almost left halfway through the movie we nearly left because we were so tired. Bruce really liked “Lara’s Theme Song” from that movie. We enjoyed going to a monthly couples night out with members of the ward taking turns having supper in each others homes. Some of the couples included the Stakers, Stapleys, Bladens, Jensens, Bohmans, Imlays and others.
In January of 1966 Bruce and I went to a national restaurant convention in Chicago. It was so cold and windy in Chicago we thought we might freeze to death as we walked from place to place. At the hotel in downtown Chicago where we stayed, we met and rode down the elevator with Cassius Clay, the World Heavy Weight Boxing Champion who later changed his name to Mohammed Ali. He was so tall and handsome as he ducked to get in the elevator as friendly and sweet as can be as we talked together on the way down to the main floor.
We traveled to Salt Lake City and stayed at Hotel Temple Square for many general conferences between 1961 and 1970. It was a tradition we loved and looked forward to. We usually stayed at the Hotel Temple Square with Mom and Dad Atkin. We often went to mission reunions and visited with extended family while in Salt Lake City. Once or twice we stayed with Uncle Bill and Aunt Lida Prince while attending conference who got us involved in making picture family group sheets. A couple times while attending conference we met and had supper with Bruce’s cousins either Ron and Jerry Prince or Kent and Sue Ann Meeks.
In January 1968 Bruce was so busy with all his involvements, he sometimes had a difficult time finding time for everything. I was busy with four preschoolers. One night after spending one more night watching the 7-9:00 nightly TV movie by myself while folding diapers and getting dirty dishes washed Bruce came home very late. After a lethal threat of divorce, he promised to have a date night once a week with me either with the kids or by ourselves. Bruce was faithful in keeping this promise.
About that same time my sister Linda to came live with us and attend SUSC. Linda had just graduated mid-year from high school in Lincoln. She moved to Utah to live with us, work at the café and attend college. What a wonderful addition she was to our family. Linda lived with us for several years while attending SUSC in Cedar City.
One night after Bruce and Linda came home from work at the café about 10 o’clock, Bruce called Linda up from her bedroom in the basement and had her help him do all the dishes. They washed, dried and put away all the dishes so the kitchen was clean in the morning when the family got up for breakfast. What a treat for me!
Bruce was ordained a bishop of the newly created Cedar City Twelfth Ward on February 22, 1970. His counselors were Bob Steele and Kimball Weaver. We met in the old rock church in Cedar. Since the chapel only had two bishop offices and three wards, another bishop’s office had to be built. Bruce got the new office built in the basement classroom right at the bottom of the stairway within two weeks doing much of the work himself with his counselors. The cloakroom was changed into the clerk’s office. Three months later all ward organizations were fully staffed and three senior couples and one young man had received their mission calls from our ward.
This was a very challenging and rewarding time for our family and especially Bruce. We re-organized our home to change one of the two main floor bedrooms into an office so Bruce could do many church interviews at home. That meant keeping our home well organized, neat and clean which was a challenge with four little ones all younger than 7 years old.
Three months after being sustained as bishop Bruce and I went to another national restaurant convention in Chicago. We rented a car to drive up to Milwaukee to visit a new chain of beef steak restaurants. On our way, we were hit broadside by an oncoming car whose driver had lost control after falling asleep. Bruce was killed immediately. I was hospitalized with some severe internal injuries. A few days later I returned home to Cedar City accompanied by my parents arriving the day before Bruce’s funeral. Dr. David Brown met us at the airport where Sid and Mary Ann took us all home. Bruce’s family members were all supportive during this difficult time.
Bruce’s funeral was held in the new Cedar Stake Chapel on May 28, 1970.. Bruce was buried in St. George later that day. The stake chapel was filled to overflowing in the chapel, cultural hall, on the stage and in the RS room for the funeral with many others standing in the foyers and hallways. Cedar City friends and ward and stake members showed a memorable tribute to Bruce by their attendance at the funeral.
There was nothing Bruce wouldn’t do or give in his service for the Lord. He loved his Heavenly Father and the Savior Jesus Christ. He had an unfailing testimony of the truthfulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He loved his family. He loved his fellow men.
One of Bruce’s favorite and most often quoted poems was “Abou Ben Adhem”.
ABOU BEN ADHEM
by James Henry Leigh Hunt
ABOU BEN ADHEM (may his tribe increase!)
Awoke one night from a deep dream of peace,
And saw—within the moonlight in his room,
Making it rich and like a lily in bloom—
An angel, writing in a book of gold.
Exceeding peace had made Ben Adhem bold,
And to the presence in the room he said,
'What writest thou?'—The vision raised its head,
And, with a look made of all sweet accord,
Answered, 'The names of those who love the Lord.'
'And is mine one?' said Abou. 'Nay, not so,'
Replied the angel. Abou spoke more low,
But cheerly still, and said, 'I pray thee, then,
Write me as one that loves his fellow men.'
The angel wrote and vanished. The next night
It came again with a great wakening light,
And showed the names whom love of God had blessed,
And lo! Ben Adhem's name led all the rest.