Elder W. Eugene Hansen, who was called as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy in 1989 and served in the Presidency of the Seventy from August 1993 to October 1998, died Nov. 5, 2016, at his home in Salt Lake City.
Born Aug. 23, 1928, in Tremonton, Utah, to Warren Eugene Hansen and Ruth Steed Hansen, he grew up the second of eight children. As a student at Bear River High School, he won first place in the National Future Farmers of America public speaking competition, resulting in a trip to the White House to meet President Harry S. Truman.
His speaking skills were put to extensive use as he served in the Church as a bishop, stake president, General Authority Seventy and president of the Salt Lake Temple. In an October 1993 general conference address, he spoke about happiness, which he said mankind has searched for from the beginning of recorded history.
Elder Hansen and his wife, Jenine Showell Hansen, were married 66 years ago; she preceded him in death by two weeks, on Oct. 21. Together they had six children, three of whom preceded them in death. He is survived by three children, 21 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
Prior to his call as a General Authority, he received his juris doctorate from the University of Utah in 1958 and was a trial lawyer for 31 years. During his career he was involved in many other initiatives and earned many honors associated with his profession.
Elder Hansen served 20 years in the military, including two years of active duty in the Korean War. He was promoted to Full-Bird Colonel at age 44.
His assignments as a General Authority Seventy took him to places around the world as well as at Church headquarters. Some of his assignments included service as first counselor in the Asia Area, president of the Asia North Area and Executive Director of the Temple Department and as a member of other committees of the Church.
A viewing will be held on Nov. 13, from 6 to 8 p.m. at Larkin Sunset Lawn, 2350 E. 1300 South, Salt Lake City. His funeral will be held on Nov. 14 at noon in the Salt Lake Bonneville Stake Center, 1535 E. Bonneview Dr., Salt Lake City, with a viewing for family and friends from 10:30 to 11:30 am. Interment, Wasatch Lawn, 1736 E. 3300 South, Salt Lake City, UT.