After a long, and well-lived life, Allan Boyd Laidlaw left his earthly experience on Jan. 15, 2018, at the age of 88. He was born in Monterey Park, California, on Nov. 7, 1929, to Walter Malcolm and Grace Adelaide Barton Laidlaw.
Allan grew up in Monterey Park, California, where he was raised with three brothers: Mal, Bob and Bill. He loved exploring the foothills of California where he was allowed only a 10-mile radius for his adventurous pursuits.
He discovered that he was mechanical at a very young age. As a youth he was always repairing bicycles, wagons and scooters. Soon he was fixing vacuum cleaner cords, small appliances, and then working in an automotive shop fixing automobile carburetors.
He enrolled in courses at Mark Kepple High in Alhambra, California, where he learned welding and wood shop, but his favorite vocational class was auto mechanics. He spent hours working on motorcycles and cars of every kind. He was driving by age 15. His first automobile purchase was a 1928 Model A for $75. A love affair that would last his lifetime.
Allan was an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and loved the Gospel. He felt that one of his biggest accomplishments was serving a mission in Brazil for 32 months. After his mission he attended Utah State University in Logan.
Leaving Logan for Christmas break in Southern California, he met a beautiful but very young redhead at a caroling activity who captured his heart. Being self-assured, he asked Marie Gates to marry him after one short week of courtship. When Marie didn’t answer as quickly as he expected after such a fine proposal, Allan told her to give him a call when she made up her mind as he headed back up to school.
Within a few days Marie decided he was her knight in shining armor, got Allan on the phone and said “yes.” They have been sweethearts for over 63 years.
While attending Utah State University he was ordered to report to Texas and then Germany for his U.S. Army service. After finishing his military duties, he returned to Logan and finished his college degree.
The highest paying job offer after college was working for the school district in Monticello, Utah, where he worked in many different capacities. He helped feed his growing family by moonlighting as the manager of the city swimming pool.
With limited housing available in Monticello, Allan decided to build a home. Having no experience, he read books and relied on mentors and friends to build his first owned home.
When the job of dean of students at Dixie College was offered, he decided moving to St. George would be a good decision for his family. He became the dean of students, taught psychology and education, and later served as dean of the humanities department.
He rode his famous bike to school each day, where he wore colored sweaters. Many students lovingly called him “Mr. Rogers” in reference to a children’s television personality. He taught at Dixie College for 23 years and loved his job.
Allan continually served in many callings throughout his life. He served as Bishop of a Young Adult ward, served on the High Council, taught Gospel Doctrine and Priesthood Lessons (teaching priesthood lessons was his personal favorite). He and his wife also served two missions for the LDS church in their later years.
Allan was a wonderful example of service to anyone and everyone who needed help. His many “jack of all trades” talents aided many friends, neighbors and widows through the years. If he didn’t know how to build or repair something he would read and teach himself so that he could get the job done.
Many of his children, grandchildren and neighbors have been blessed with his wonderful spirit of serving. He will be missed but never forgotten.
Allan had many hobbies and interests. He spent many hours working on family history and genealogy. He loved playing the accordion and ukulele, and he enjoyed singing. He had a wonderful bass voice and has belonged to the Master Singers Choir for many years.
He spent time camping, hunting, fishing and boating with his family. He also belonged to the Model A Club and had a love affair with restoring old vintage cars and trucks as well as Cougars and Mustangs.
Allan and Marie enjoyed traveling with his brothers and their wives as they visited Europe, Panama, Bermuda, Hawaii, Alaska and the eastern United States.
Allan is survived by his wife, Marie; his brothers Bob (Francis) and Malcolm (Alicia) Laidlaw; his children Becky Rogers (Cliff), Larry Laidlaw (Clare), James Laidlaw (Sherry), Kent Laidlaw (Robyn), Sandra Olson (Mark) and Lora Eggertz (Jeff); 34 grandchildren; and 42 great-grandchildren.
- Funeral services will be Saturday, Jan. 20, at the LDS 6th Ward Chapel on 85 S. 400 East, St. George at 11 a.m.
- Viewing will be from 9-10:30 a.m.
- Interment will take place in the St. George Cemetery on 650 E. Tabernacle St. after services.
Arrangements have been entrusted to the care of Spilsbury Mortuary, 435-673-2454.
For condolences, full obituary and funeral listings please visit Spilsbury Mortuary online.