History of Wilfred and Ardell Williams, by Wilfred K. Williams
Contributor: Holle.Boykin Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
I can best describe my parents by saying that they, too, were honest, humble, and likeable people who served the Lord and worked hard all their adult lives to raise and provide for their family. My father, Wilfred Henry Williams, was the only natural child of Henry and Ann Guest Mosley Williams, converts to the Church who had emigrated in their youth to Utah from England. Wilfred was born in Provo, Utah, September 27, 1896. A few years later, his parents informally adopted and then raised a foster child named Veronica. She became his “younger sister”.
My mother, Mary Ardell Fullmer Williams, was born 13 November 1901 in Diamond, Utah, a little mining town located between Mammoth and Eureka, Utah. A younger brother, John, and sister, Minnie, were born while they were living there. Later, the family moved to Mapleton and then to Springville, Utah.
Mother started Kindergarten in Spanish Fork in the Fall of 1907. She continued her schooling in Springville at the Washington School, Springville Junior High School, and finally ￼Springville High School. However, she was forced to leave high school at the end of the ninth grade and go to work to help with the family finances. She did housework at different homes and, of course, helped out on the farm with the many chores.
Two weeks after my father’s birth, the Williams family moved to Springville, Utah, and it is there that Wilfred spent his growing-up years. He helped on the farm, assisted in the house, and attended public schools in Springville. Upon his graduation from high school, he took a job with the U. S. Government Land Office working as a surveyor. His was part of a crew sectionizing subdivisions in southern and southwestern Utah. While still on survey, Wilfred received his induction notice for military service with the Army, starting September 5th, 1918. He reported to Camp Kearny in California where he was under-going basic training when the war ended. So, instead of orders for overseas deployment, he was sent to the Presidio in San Francisco and discharged from active service.
Ardell was only eight years old when her mother died and the family moved in with Delbert Fullmer, Sid’s half brother. Del and Jonene, his new bride, proceeded to have fifteen children of their own but treated Ardell and John as if they were their own children.
Shortly after returning from the Army, my Dad married his childhood sweetheart, my mother, who he had been dating while in High School. They were married in the Salt Lake Temple on January 14, 1920, immediately upon his release from the Army. He was twenty three and she was eighteen.
Initially, Dad and his new bride moved to Heyburn, Idaho, where he was able to rent sixty acres of farm land and plant them to potatoes. Unfortunately, the price of potatoes plummeted after a few years and he was forced to seek other employment. He found work with William R. Smith, who had a brokerage business and a flour mill and feed business in Bountiful, Utah. Nine years later, in 1936, he ran for and was elected City Recorder for the City of Bountiful. From that time until his retirement, except for one short period, he served in this capacity. In all, my parents raised six children. The twins, Dora and Doris, and my sister Vada were all born in Idaho while Dad was engaging in farming. My older brother, Clyde, was born in 1926 in Salt Lake City in a little home at Sixth South and Second East. Four years later, I was born in Bountiful, Utah, in a rented home located a half block west of Main Street on Fifth South Street. My younger brother, Robert John, was born on my fifth birthday, in 1935, after we had moved into a new home located at 576 South Main Street in Bountiful.
Unfortunately, Robert proved to be a problem and a great drain on my mother’s strength for the rest of her life. He was mentally retarded and could not care for himself. As a result, he required a great deal of care which mother gave him with no thought of herself. She overdid and brought on a bout of pneumonia. This, in turn, triggered a serious heart condition that plagued her for over fifteen years. She was seriously ill in the hospital at one point and we feared for her life. It was only through prayer and faith and the blessings of the Lord that we were privileged to have her life spared and to continue to enjoy her companionship.
Eventually, mother suffered a series of strokes that left her paralyzed on one side. She was confined to her bed the last 5 years of her life and was tended by my father. His sterling qualities shone forth time and again as he gave up sleep, work, and nourishment in order to care for her. He did so without complaint, criticism, or grumbling; he cheerfully and willingly played his role of husband and companion and was an outstanding example to all of us children. Nevertheless, the strain on him was so great that we feared that he would succumb before mother. She died on the 14th Day of January, 1962, her 42nd wedding anniversary, loved and respected by all who knew her.
After mother's death, my father married Ruth Riley Cushing, who for years had worked alongside him as the Bountiful City Treasurer. They spent nearly twenty five years together as husband and wife and had a wonderful time. Their immediate association ended when my father died September 23, 1986, and was buried on his ninetieth birthday. Ruth subsequently moved in with her oldest son, John Cushing, and his family, and continued to maintain contact with all of her other children, stepchildren, and grandchildren until her death nine years later.