Our beloved mother, Fern Bowen Oberhansly, passed away peacefully in her home in Neola, Utah, February 2, 2017. A loving wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, aunt and friend to all, she was born on April 17, 1927, as the youngest of four children, to John Parry Bowen and Frances Bowen.
She married Mark Loy Oberhansly on October 8, 1945, and was later sealed in the Salt Lake City temple.
Fern was born with the gift of music and loved to play the piano “by ear.” At the age of 4, having heard“O My Father” at a funeral in Spanish Fork, she kept this in her mind by humming it while the family traveled the long distance home. From memory, she recreated the beautiful melody on the piano, and later, during a ward conference, she was lifted upon the piano stool and played the piece to the amazement of all those in attendance. From this time forward she shared this talent generously throughout her life.
She excelled in academics, attending Wasatch Academy in Mt. Pleasant, Utah, where she graduated summa cum laude. As Valedictorian, she was awarded a full college scholarship, but her plans were soon to be interrupted by a handsome young soldier returning home from WWII. The young couple settled into married life on a ranch in Hayden, Utah, with five children to follow.
Intelligent and ambitious, Fern entered the business world, first as chief operator of Mountain Bell Telephone Co. and later, as owner and president of Basin Land Title Company, in Vernal and Roosevelt.
She was President of the Utah Royalty Owners Association for numerous years, and also served for two years on the Utah State Board of Community and Economic Development. She was honored as a Distinguished Alumna of Wasatch Academy, and appointed a Board member.
She was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and enjoyed the opportunity to teach the youth in Sunday School and in the Relief Society. She served as organist in the Vernal Temple for many years.
To her family she was “larger than life”! Family always came first. Always the gracious hostess, she was a fabulous cook and always took time to have a good visit. . . home was the happiest place to be!
Fern is survived by her children, Sally Bastian (Terry), Salem; Susan Famulary, Provo; Mark Bowen Oberhansly (Edelweiss), Hayden; John David Oberhansly, Roosevelt; 14 grandchildren and 18 great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Mark, and daughter, Bonnie Lee Oberhansly, brother & sisters, Keith Bowen, Gwendolyn Butterfield, and Fawn Coltharp.
Funeral services will be held Saturday, February 11, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. at the Neola LDS Chapel. There will be a viewing on Friday from 6-8 p.m. at the Hullinger Mortuary and on Saturday from 10-10:45 a.m. at the church.
Burial will be in the Hayden Cemetery. A special thank you to nurses Sandy Lamb & Karla Harris, caregiver, Lucy Mortensen, and especially the very loving CNAs, Debbie and Charlee.