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George Spencer Obituary (1932-2021) – Sandy, UT

George Sterling Spencer II

August 26, 1932 – December 19, 2021

George Sterling Spencer II, 89 years old, died peacefully on December 19, 2021 in Dr -er, UT.

George (Sterling to his childhood family and friends) was born on August 26, 1932, to George Q and Lucille Spencer, in Salt Lake City, Utah. He grew up on the family farm in Spring Lake, UT, and graduated from Payson High School (class president) in 1950. On  -ril 11, 1953, he married his high school mistress Janice Branagan in the Salt Lake LDS Temple. His love for his beloved and his reverence for her strength and talents was endless. He attended Snow College, followed by Utah State University, where he graduated with a degree in agricultural science.

He spent his entire career in agriculture, which he loved so much. He has been a professional farming teacher in Delta, Utah and Spanish Fork, UT, where his students and teams have gained national recognition. He was a teacher at heart and made it his business to help young people realize their potential. In 1962 the family moved to Chicago, IL, where he worked in market development and public relations for Swift & Company. He began executive training at Swift in Clovis, NM in 1966 and moved to Guymon, OK a year later to help open Swift’s new beef processing facility and run the beef operation. In 1969 he became executive vice president of the American National Cattleman’s Association and its successor, the National Cattleman’s Association, where he worked tirelessly for eleven years to strengthen the beef industry and unite competing organizations within the industry.

He took pride in his pioneering legacy and endeavored to instill the rewards of hard work and purposeful graduation in his beloved children and grandchildren. He did physical labor in his garden, on a rented farm and in the family hut to recover from the rigors of business life. He was pleased that the family had gathered in the Spencer family’s weaver hut. He became a master gardener and was constantly experimenting with creating beautiful surroundings in his large garden. He enjoyed raising Suffolk sheep, a talent he had developed in childhood. His enthusiasm for his esteemed Quarter Horse Champ helped nurture a love for animals in several of his grandchildren.

His interest in emerging agri-futures markets led him in 1980 to join Summit Commodities in Denver, CO Relations, Government Relations, and Foundation Activities. He has served on the board of directors of the American Meat Institute and on the boards of directors of private and public companies. In the later stages of his career, George was referred to as the “Elder Statesman of the US Beef Industry.” He retired at the age of 60 to help Latter-day Saints’ Church of Jesus Christ manage its extensive agricultural land. He and Janice served their church as full-time missionaries for eighteen months. He had unshakable faith in his Savior, Jesus Christ, and sought to serve his fellow human beings in many Church leadership roles wherever he lived: young men leader, branch presidents, temple workers, elders quorum president, bishoprics, high councilors, and Stake presidencies. He served in the US Army Reserve for eight years.

Survived by wife Janice, Dr -er, UT; Sons Stephen Q Spencer (Kathy), Sammamish, WA; Mark J. Spencer (Wendy), South Jordan, UT; Scott H. Spencer (Heidi), Dr -er, UT; seven grandchildren and three great-grandchildren; Brother Daniel H. Spencer (and wife Vera), Littleton, CO; Brother-in-law C. Dwight Wood, Salt Lake City, UT.

The memorial service will be held on Thursday, December 23, 11:00 a.m. at LDS Corner Canyon 4th Ward, 13366 South 1300 East, Dr -er, UT, 84020. Public viewing of the Ward on Wednesdays, 6-8pm and Thursday, 10-10: 50am. The funeral will take place at Larkin Sunset Gardens, 1950 E. Dimple Dell Rd. (10600 pp.), Sandy. For online condolences or to attend church services virtually, please visit. www.larkinmortuary.com

In lieu of flowers, please send your donation to: Utah State University, Advancement Services Gift Accounting, 1490 Old Main Hill, Logan, UT 84322-1490, and include the following information with your check: In memory of George S. Spencer, 13363 S Canyon Spring Circle, Dr -er, UT 84020.

You can also call Utah State University Advancement Services at 888-653-6246 to make your donation. –

Published by Deseret News from December 21st to December 22nd, 2021.

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