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Obituary: Joseph Snow Wood

Joseph Snow Wood 1916 ~ 2005 Joseph Snow Wood, age 89, passed away September 6, 2005. Joseph was born May 11, 1916 in Salt Lake City to Joseph Arthur and Merle Snow Wood. He grew up in the west Capitol Hill area of Salt Lake City and attended Salt Lake public schools and the University of Utah, graduating in 1939 with a degree in accounting. In 1939 he married Janet Smith in the Salt Lake Temple. They spent their honeymoon in Sun Valley and began a 60-year tradition of annual family vacations in Sun Valley that now extends to four generations. Joe enthusiastically shared his talents and love of people in service to the LDS Church. He was a missionary in the British Isles from 1935 to 1937, a high councilman in the Highland Stake, YMMIA General Board member, patriarch of the University of Utah married student stake and bishop for 12 years of Parleys First Ward, the ward he was a member of for 64 years. Professionally, Joe received his CPA in 1940, shortly after joining the Utah Idaho Sugar Company. In 1965 he retired as assistant treasurer from Utah Idaho Sugar Company and embarked on a new career as a history professor. In 1967 he received his PhD in history from the University of Utah and for the next 18 years taught U.S. History, Utah History and religion at Brigham Young University. His uniquely energetic teaching style not only brought history to life but made him one of the most popular professors on campus. His passion to teach never waned. After retiring from BYU he taught history for 14 more years at the Salt Lake Community College retiring at age 82. For the next five years he held weekly history classes in his home to enrich the lives of friends and neighbors. Joe was an avid and unique sports fan, cheering for both the University of Utah and BYU, never revealing his preference when these rivals met. Joe loved his home, his neighborhood and Parleys Ward and in recent years spent most summer evenings in his front yard waving and talking to those who passed by. His family and his large circle of friends were at the center of his life and he imparted to them the virtue of kindness and the joy of learning. He is preceded in death by his wife Janet and brother Frank. He is survived by his children, Ginger Hucks, Jim (Colleen) Wood and Jody (Richard) Grow, seven grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren who adored their "PA". Also survived by his sister Janis McKellar and brothers Stephen G. Wood, Richard G. Wood and David G. Wood. The family would like to express their appreciation to the St. Joseph Villa and the Caresource Hospice for their loving care and dedication for Joseph. Funeral services will be held Monday, September 12, 2005 at 12:00 noon at Parley's 1st Ward, 2350 South 2100 East, Salt Lake City. A viewing will be held at Wasatch Lawn Mortuary, 3401 South Highland Drive, Salt Lake City, September 11, 2005 from 6:00-8:00 p.m. and prior to the services at the Parley's 1st Ward from 10:45-11:45 a.m. Memorial contributions can be made to the Perpetual Education Fund, 50 East North Temple, 8th Floor, Salt Lake City, Utah 84150. One of Professor Wood's BYU students is putting together a student tribute for the funeral and family. Former students who have a favorite memory of Professor Wood or learned an important principle or lesson from him, please email your brief story to