Quentin Chan Ence, 78, passed away in an auto accident in Enterprise, Utah, while returning from working on his ranch, April 9, 2016. He was born in Ivins on May 21, 1937, to Ernest Reuben Ence and Mata Gubler Ence. He married his high school sweetheart, Sylvia Ann Cox Ence on January 13, 1956, and was later sealed with his family in the St. George Temple on September 1, 1979. They had just celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary.
Born to parents who pioneered Ivins, Quentin was proud of his Swiss heritage.
In his words, “I have a great heritage. The Ence name is a great and honest name . . . I want to leave my posterity a feeling for the heritage that is theirs.”
Quentin was born in Ivins and currently resided in Ivins — for him, his life had come full circle. Family was very important to him; Quentin and his brothers, Jay and Floyd, were inseparable.
Working, in general, was important to Quentin — which was evidenced in his wide variety of work. He went from agricultural work, to ranching, to a fruit-stand, to working at the Mercury Test Site (during the atomic bomb testing), to truck driving, to hauling hay and grain, to opening a feed mill, and, finally, to building, developing, and construction. Quentin and Jay helped build the largest construction company in Southern Utah, introducing innovations like water features and palm trees. Their business, Ence Homes, helped change Southern Utah into the thriving community it is today.
But, Quentin was truly a farmer-rancher at heart. After retiring, he went back to ranching — fulfilling his dream of building a farm like his dad.
He loved anything to do with being outdoors: hunting, fishing, flying (airplanes and helicopters), boating, houseboating at Lake Powell, hunting, Dutch oven cooking and snowmobiling. He had a great love for the “Red Mountain” and his home-away-from-home at Mountain Meadows. He also had a great love for animals — especially cows, horses and dogs. He had a very special attachment to each of his dogs.
Quentin loved watching his kids and grandkids play sports. He orchestrated family houseboat trips to Lake Powell and enjoyed family projects like thinning peaches and putting up corn. He especially enjoyed carrying on a tradition of his father’s, being Santa Clause on Christmas morning, something he did not only for his kids and grandkids, but for so many others in the community.
In his own words to his family: “What great kids I have. They have brought me joy and happiness. To be able to work with all of them has been a wonderful experience.”
Besides his family, perhaps the most important work Quentin did was his service in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He held many leadership positions in the church and was able to help a lot of people. He was able to serve a mission with his wife, Sylvia, in Australia. When they returned, he enjoyed serving in the temple with her.
Quentin also loved helping in the community. He and Jay built the Dove Center and Jubilee House, along with other community projects. He enjoyed donating to the Jubilee of Trees each year. He also proudly served his country for many years in the Utah Army National Guard.
In Quentin’s words, “I have lived a full and happy life . . . I have tried to hold true to the values my parents taught me and I pray my posterity holds true to these same values. My cup is full. I have had a great life.”
He is preceded in death by his parents, Reuben and Mata Ence; his brothers Dilworth and Floyd; and his sisters Lillis Spencer and Pauline Olds. He is survived by his wife, Sylvia; his brother Jay (Janice) Ence; his children, Kim, Tracy (Leslie), Russ (Lisa), Terese Mangum (Ken), Troy (LaNae), Jon (Alexis); 17 grandchildren; and, 11 great-grandchildren.
- Friday, April 15, at 11 a.m. at the Ivins LDS Heritage Building Chapel, 260 E. 1060 South, Ivins, Utah
- Visitations will be Thursday, April 14, from 6-8 p.m. at Metcalf Mortuary and Friday, April 15, from 9:30-10:30 a.m. at the Ivins Heritage Building
- Interment will be in the Ivins City Cemetery
Arrangements have been entrusted to the care of Metcalf Mortuary, 435-673-4221.
For condolences, full obituary, and funeral listings please visit Metcalf Mortuary online.