Carlos H. Owen

April 5th, 1929 to December 20th, 2015

As told by his wife Dorothy

Carlos’ father Charles Henry Owen’s first wife Betsy "Bessie" Kingston Owen was a sister to Charles W. Kingston.  Together they had been studying the fullness of the gospel, which included the law of celestial, or plural marriage.  Charles told Betsy that if they were going to live that principle, she would have to agree to it and she should also pick the girl they would propose to come into their family.  

Carlos' father Charles and mother Earlene

At that time, their older daughters, Barbara and Maurine, were very good friends with a woman named Earlene Hull.  Betsy felt inspired that Earlene was the one they should court to join their family.  Because Earlene came from a family that was also living those principles and was open to the guidance of the Lord, she accepted their proposal.  Charles and Earlene were married on January 29, 1928.

Carlos Hull Owen was their first child, born on April 5, 1929.  When Carlos was two years old, his father’s first wife, Betsy died just one day after giving birth to a baby girl.  Charles named the baby Bessie after her mother.

Earlene Hull holding Carlos as a baby

Carlos’ mother Earlene took her sister wife’s children into her heart and her home.  She loved them as her own.  Each one of Betsy’s children said they loved Earlene as if she were their own mother.  For reasons unknown to Carlos, his father moved their family from home to home quite often.  It was during that time his father married his third wife, Delsa.

On July 4, 1937, Charles Owen and his family joined the Davis County Coop.  After joining, they moved to bountiful and lived in old canvas tents for a short time. At that time his sister Carol was 17, his brother Wendell was 14 and Carlos was 8 years old.  Brother Elden asked Charles if he would move to the Anderson farm in Wyoming, so he moved Delsa, her children, Carol, Wendell, Delbert and Carlos out with him.  Earlene stayed in Salt Lake with her younger children.

Carlos at a young age

After getting settled in Wyoming, Charles went to Salt Lake to get Earlene since she was expecting her sixth child and was getting close to her due date.  However, due to complications the baby was stillborn, and Earlene became very sick.  Charles took her back to Salt Lake to the hospital, but they were unable to help her, and she passed away on September 1, 1937. This was a very difficult time for eight-year-old Carlos.

On February 2, 1940, they moved back to Bountiful.  Carlos and his family worked on many different jobs and positions over the years.  Carlos was 11 years old and remembers taking care of the fruit trees in Bountiful, working on the weeding crew with his good friend Billy Stoddard, and going to the farm in Elmo, Utah to help Burton Dye’s family harvest potatoes.  His father worked right along with Carlos and the kids, teaching them to work when it was time to work and play when there was time to play.  In February of 1942, they moved to the Saratoga farm where they remained for several years.  Dean and Billy Stoddard and their brothers would work there in the summertime.

Charles' Family at Saratoga Farm

During the winter of 1946-1947, when Carlos was 17 years old, he lived with Ren Stoddard to help him with mechanic work, fixing cars.  Carlos was always thankful for the association he made with the Stoddard family.

In the winter of ‘47-48 Carlos went to the mine to work.  On March 5th, he received word that his father needed him to help move the family from Saratoga to Kaysville.  Two days after leaving the mine Carlos got word there had been an accident at the Huntington mine.  Burke Frandsen had been killed and Melvin Frandsen and Alfred Grundvig had been hurt very badly.  Carlos always wondered if being called home had saved his life.  That was one of the many times he felt like his life was spared.

In July of ‘48 Carlos was asked to drive truck for Ortell Kingston.  Ardous Gustafson had just moved into a coal yard the Co-Op had just purchased in Salt Lake City.  She fixed-up a place for Carlos to sleep in the scale house.  She treated him as though he were her own son.  That was the first time he had felt a mother’s love since his own dear mother had passed away.  The next few months of summer and fall were about the most enjoyable he had ever had.  He loved driving truck until that winter when it got cold.  The truck he was driving was a 1942 Chevrolet that had been rolled.  There was no back window, holes in the floorboard, and part of the hood was off.  That winter was one of the coldest winters in history.  On January 25th, the temperature dropped to -22 degrees in Salt Lake.  Over the mountains, it got down from -30 to -40 degrees.  This cold weather lasted quite a while.  Even though he wore a coat and wrapped a blanket around his legs, the only way he could keep from freezing was to stop at several truck stops along the way and go in to warm up.

Carlos Driving Truck

In March of 1949, just before Carlos’ 20th birthday, Brother Ortell asked him if he would go to Woods Cross to do the milking, care for the cows and everything else that goes with the job on a dairy farm.  This was not his favorite type of work, but he had learned that the best way to be satisfied is to learn to like whatever it is you are doing as though it was going to be a lifetime thing.  He worked seven days a week, starting at 4 o’clock in the morning until chores were finished at night.  Part of his job was to manage the young boys that were also working and living on the farm.  Ardous' son Elden Kingston was one of those boys.  There was also two of Lavenda Kingston’s boys, Jim and Fred Kingston, and Alan Jenkins.

Due to the long hours and hard work, Carlos started to get discouraged, but he was shown in a dream that he should STICK TO THE KINGSTON BOYS, meaning Ortell and Merlin.  That dream was very much appreciated and helped him to stick it out when the going got tough.

Not all of Carlos’ family members who joined stayed in the Co-Op, which was difficult for Carlos, but because of his association with many good Co-Op members and his closeness to the Lord, he was able to keep his testimony and faith strong.  His sister Carol and his brother Wendell also stayed in the Co-Op.  They were both Betsy’s Children.  Carlos’ older sisters Barbara Kelsch and Maurine Barlow, were married before Charles Owen’s family joined the Co-Op.  Even though they were not members themselves, some of their family are members today.

In 1950, Carlos received a draft notice from the army, but his help was needed on the farm, so he appealed for a deferment.  The deferment was granted, and Carlos did not serve in the army at that time.  3 years later he received another draft notice on June 8, 1953.  This time he could not be deferred.  He was sent to Camp Roberts in California for Basic Training and in November of that same year he was sent to Germany.

Carlos after being drafted
Carlos in his bunker

Before he left for the Army, he was warned by Merlin and others that life could be hard in the army and that he would be tempted to go the ways of the world, but for Carlos, the army was more like a vacation.  Since he was already used to early mornings and hard work those things didn’t faze him.  As for the worldly ways, he just wasn’t interested or tempted.  The hardest thing for him to get used to was the bad language of some of the soldiers, which did really bother him.  However, he had never had so much time to read.  While in the army he read the Bible and Book of Mormon all the way through several times.

Carlos fixing equipment in the army
Carlos delivering milk

During that time, he was able to graduate from high school and go to mechanic school.  That education was very valuable to him when he returned home.  After his discharge from the army in May of 1955, he went back to the dairy in Woods Cross.  While he was in the Army, Merlin Kingston had started delivering milk to Co-op members in Bountiful and Salt Lake.  Now that Carlos was back, he took the responsibility of the farm, and the milk delivery job from Merlin.

Carlos and Naomi's Wedding

Almost a year later he had been given inspiration that he should marry Naomi Dye.   She also got direction from the Lord and they were Married on April 21. 1956.  Naomi was the daughter of Burton C. Dye and Vivian Frandsen Dye.  They were living on the Elmo farm at that time.  Carlos and Naomi raised their children and worked on the Woods Cross Dairy farm for many years.  Naomi spent many hours working right alongside Carlos.  He couldn’t have got everything done without her help.

On April 27, 1962, Carlos was digging grain out of one of the silos on the farm.  There was a lot of damp grain stuck to the sides.  All at once it came down, completely burying him.  He saw it coming and instinctively put up his arm to protect himself.  He was pinned tightly underneath the grain and couldn’t move.  The wide brim of the hat he was wearing kept the grain out of his eyes and mouth, so he had a little pocket of air to breath, but he knew it wouldn’t last long.  His right hand was up and the only thing he could move was his wrist.  He was able to move it enough to get it out into open air.  He tried calling for help but no one could hear him.  After being stuck for what seemed like hours, and saying several silent prayers, he heard his five-year-old son Jonathon calling for him.  Never had a sound been so sweet.  He was able to call Jonathon and tell him to go get help.  One more time Heavenly Father had saved the life of Carlos.

After being buried in the silo, he was plagued with asthma.  His health began to deteriorate so in October 1966, Brother Ortell asked Carlos if he wanted to move Huntington, UT to live and work in a better climate.  While working there he was able to spend more time relaxing and enjoying his family.  However, a couple of tragedies struck during these times.  On January 9, 1970 his good friend and brother-in-law, Lloyd Dye, was hurt very badly in an accident in the mines.  Lloyd died a week later at the Price Hospital.  Then on the day they got back from Lloyd’s funeral, Carlos’ house caught on fire and burned to the ground.  These two incidences were very hard on Carlos and Naomi.

Carlos and Dorothy White's Wedding

On June 3, 1971 Naomi’s half-sister Dorothy White married Carlos as his second wife.  With this change in their family, Carlos, Naomi and Dorothy moved to Woods Cross, UT.   They moved back on short notice, so there was no house available.  They all moved in with Naomi and Dorothy’s sister Alice.  They, along with Naomi’s 10 children and Alice’s 3 children lived in a two-bedroom home with an unfinished basement for 6 months. Instead of taking care of the cows, this time around Carlos ran the truck shop, fixing the farm equipment and helped with the farming and haying.

In June of 1980 Carlos started flying lessons.  He soloed on August 15th of that same year.  He was 51 years old.  He joined the Civil Air Patrol on February 2, 1982.  He passed his instrument training in 1984.  He received his Commercial Flying License on November 26, 1988, at the age of 59.  By the middle of 1989 he was flying full time for his brother Don Owen and Alpine Air.  Carlos and Naomi moved to the Huntington Airport on March 24, 1990.  In April of 1991 he got his multi-engine training.  On Sunday November 27, 1994, Carlos had a massive heart attack, which brought his flying career to an end.

Carlos with his airplane

After a long recovery period Carlos went to work for Elden Gustafson Kingston at Mountain Coin in Salt Lake City, UT.

In 2006, Naomi was diagnosed with sclerosis of the liver.  Naomi Ruth Dye Owen passed away on June 1, 2007.  Naomi was Carlos’ helpmate, wife and life-long friend.  Her passing left a deep void in his life.

He was given 21 bonus years after his heart attack in which he kept himself busy by helping the Co-op and his family.  Carlos H. Owen Returned to his Father in Heaven on December 20, 2015.  He was surrounded by his family who were singing the songs that he loved.

Carlos' family whom he loved very much

Copyright © Davis County Cooperative Society

DCCSOCIETY.ORG is prepared and maintained by members of the DCCS for the use of its members.

The views expressed are the opinion of the individual contributors and are not necessarily the official position of the Davis County Cooperative Society, DCCSOCIETY.ORG NEWS LLC or its owners.