On Tuesday, Oct. 8,
President M. Russell Ballard celebrates his 91st birthday.
President Ballard has been serving as the acting president of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles since Jan. 14, 2018. He was sustained as an apostle on Oct. 6, 1985.
While serving as president of the Canada Toronto Mission, he was called to the First Quorum of the Seventy in April 1976. From February 1980 to October 1985, he served as a member of the Presidency of the Seventy.
He married Barbara Bowen on Aug. 28, 1951, in the
Salt Lake Temple. They are the parents of seven children. Sister Ballard passed away on Oct. 1, 2018, at the age of 86. President Ballard acknowledged the passing of his wife during his October 2018 and October 2019 general conference talks.
Here are 23 photos celebrating the life of President Ballard:
M. Russell Ballard as a toddler. He was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, on Oct. 8, 1928, to Melvin Russell and Geraldine Smith Ballard. Credit: Intellectual Reserve, Inc. M. Russell Ballard and Barbara Bowen were married in the Salt Lake Temple on Aug. 28, 1951. Credit: Intellectual Reserve, Inc. M. Russell Ballard is pictured with his wife, Barbara B. Ballard. They are the parents of two sons and five daughters. Credit: Deseret News archive M. Russell Ballard, left, worked as the president of Ballard Motor Company, his father’s car dealership, in the 1950s. Credit: Deseret News archive M. Russell Ballard served twice as a bishop. Here he is pictured with the Holladay 12th Ward, Olympus Stake. Left to right are Glendon M. Whitmore, first counselor; Bishop M. Russell Ballard Jr., and Boyd N. Nielson, second counselor. At rear are Irvan W. McCarrel, J. Rodney Taylor and H. Clive Kimball, clerks. Credit: Deseret News archive Elder M. Russell Ballard and his wife, Sister Barbara Ballard, pose after his new calling to serve in the First Quorum of the Seventy in April 1976. Credit: Church News archive Family time was always important to the Ballard Family. From left, Craig, Elder M. Russell Ballard, Tracy and Sister Barbara Ballard, match wits and luck in a board game in the 1980s. Credit: Church News archive Elder M. Russell Ballard reviews curriculum material at the Church in March 1980. Credit: Church News archive Elder M. Russell Ballard gives a talk about families in a Latter-day Saint meetinghouse on May 25, 1980. Pictured with his daughter and son-in-law, he uses his grandson to make a point that no one knows the destiny of a child. Credit: Church News archive Elder Charles Didier and Elder M. Russell Ballard, on front row, mingle with children and others in the congregation when Suriname was dedicated for the preaching of the gospel in February 1990. Credit: Church News archive Elder M. Russell Ballard, right, was a guest of President George Bush at Camp David for the dedication of the new interfaith chapel at the former president’s Maryland retreat. Elder Ballard received a silver tray for the Church’s contribution to the Camp David Chapel Fund Inc. This picture appeared in an April 1991 edition of the Church News. Credit: Church News archive Elder M. Russell Ballard, President Howard W. Hunter, and Elder Russell M. Nelson, Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin, and Elder Dean L. Larsen watch a cornerstone laying for a temple dedication in 1989. Credit: Church News archives Elder M. Russell Ballard, President Boyd K. Packer, Jon M. Huntsman Sr., Bishop H. David Burton, and Elder D. Todd Christofferson at the Baton Rouge Evacuation Center on Sept. 4, 2005. Credit: Intellectual Reserve, Inc. Elder M. Russell Ballard and Jon M. Huntsman Sr. are pictured at Waterfall Resort in Alaska in July 1994. They were great friends. Elder Huntsman, a successful businessman who served as an Area Seventy and mission president, passed away in February 2018. Credit: Intellectual Reserve, Inc. Elder M. Russell Ballard talks about grave sites of Joseph and Hyrum Smith commemoration service June 27, 2002. Jospeh Smith is Elder Ballard’s great-great-great-uncle and Hyrum Smith is his great-great grandfather. Credit: Jeffrey D. Allred Elder Jon M. Huntsman Sr., Peter Huntsman and Elder M. Russell Ballard survey some of the damage in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, Sept. 4, 2005. Credit: Intellectual Reserve, Inc. Michelle Obama, middle, meets with the Elder Quentin L. Cook, left, and Elder M. Russell Ballard, right, at Church Headquarters during a campaign stop in Salt Lake City on behalf of her husband, Sen. Barack Obama, in February 2008. Credit: Intellectual Reserve, Inc Elder M. Russell M. Ballard shakes hands with a young child in Moscow, Russia, June 4, 2016. Credit: Intellectual Reserve, Inc. Elder M. Russell Ballard speaks during the annual Days of ’47 rodeo at the new state fair park arena in Salt Lake City on July 19, 2017. Credit: Jeffrey D. Allred Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, fourth from left; Elder S. Gifford Nielsen, third from left; and Sister Cristina B. Franco, second counselor in the Primary general presidency, second from left; gather in prayer with The Reverend Clemons in Houston, Texas, on Sept. 16-17, 2017. Credit: Intellectual Reserve, Inc. Elder M. Russell Ballard and his wife, Sister Barbara Ballard, exit at the end of the afternoon session of 187th Semiannual General Conference in the Conference Center in Salt Lake City on Sunday, Oct. 1, 2017. Sister Ballard passed away on Oct. 1, 2018, at age 86. Credit: Scott G Winterton Elder M. Russell Ballard rides in the Days of ’47 Parade in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, July 24, 2018. Credit: Kristin Murphy
President Russell M. Nelson and President M. Russell Ballard pose near the Vatican in Rome, Italy on March 9, 2019, after meeting with Pope Francis. Credit: Jeffrey D. Allred