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L. Tom Perry

Missionary, Marine, Retail Executive and Apostle



Elder L. Tom Perry, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

Photo courtesy of © 2011 Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.

Elder L. Tom Perry leaves the October 2010 General Conference with his wife, Barbara.

Photo courtesy of © 2010 Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.

Elder L. Tom Perry his wife Barbara (left), and Elder Russell M. Nelson, his wife Wendy, participated in cornerstone and dedicatory services for the Brigham City Utah Temple.

Photo courtesy of © 2012 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.

Full Name:

Lowell Tom Perry

Most Recent Position:

Member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS/Mormon). In seniority, he ranks only behind Thomas S. Monson and Boyd K. Packer. He is the oldest living Apostle.

Known For:

Being tall. He is a little over six feet, four inches.

His energy, enthusiasm and physical fitness, despite his age.

Being a peacemaker and mediator.

Personal Details:

Born: August 5, 1922 in Logan, Utah.

Died: n/a

Marriage and Family: Married Virginia Lee on 18 July 1947. They had three children. She died in 1974. In 1976, Perry married Barbara Taylor Dayton.

Education: He received his B.S. degree in finance from Utah State Agricultural College (now Utah State University) in 1949. He also completed graduate work there, also in finance.

Experience: His professional career was spent as a retail executive. He served in many companies, in many different states.

Other: He served as a missionary and then in the Marine Corps, spending time in Saipan as well as part of the occupations forces in Japan after the war. He served in numerous local leadership positions, including President of the Boston Stake.

Began serving as an Assistant to the Twelve in 1971. In 1974, he was ordained an Apostle.

Notable Quotes:

On the deterioration of the family:

The main effects of these depreciating attitudes about the sanctity of marriage are the consequences to families—the strength of families is deteriorating at an alarming rate. This deterioration is causing widespread damage to society. I see direct cause and effect. As we give up commitment and fidelity to our marriage partners, we remove the glue that holds our society together.

On the supposed energy shortage:

I hear the cries today of breakdowns in our system. There is a shortage here and a problem there, and every time I analyze the difficulty, I find it to be man-made. The Lord’s supply system continues to work as it always has. The resources are still available in abundance. We worry about energy today, and some wonder if a miscalculation has been made in the heavens and the supply will not last until the Millennium. There is only one energy shortage existing today, and that is what exists between our own two ears.

On living simply:

In our search to obtain relief from the stresses of life, may we earnestly seek ways to simplify our lives.

On marriage and family:

The joining together of a man and a woman to be legally and lawfully wed not only is preparation for future generations to inherit the earth, but it also brings the greatest joy and satisfaction that can be found in this mortal experience. This is especially true when the powers of the priesthood proclaim a marriage to be for time and for all eternity. Children born to such marriages have a security that is found nowhere else.

On obedience:

May we ever be a light on the hill, an example in keeping the commandments, which have never changed and will never change.

On preparing for future needs:

Go out in your garages and look over the unused bicycles, toy cars, athletic equipment, skis, roller blades, et cetera, and calculate what the return would have been had the cost of these items been invested in future needs. Remember, I emphasized unused articles. How many of you have seen garages so full of things that there is no longer room for the car?

On reading scriptures:

The scriptures that are never read will never help us.

Notable Addresses:

Other Resources:



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