Frances Johnson Monson

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Courtesy IRI

Frances Beverly Johnson Monson was the wife of Thomas S. Monson, president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

She was born on October 27, 1927, and grew up in Salt Lake City, Utah. She loved to play tennis, played the piano well, and excelled in math and science. She worked in the accounting department of a large department store to help pay for her college education and graduated from the University of Utah. While at the university, she met then Tommy Monson in 1944. They married on October 7, 1948. They had two sons and a daughter.

During her married life, she developed the ability to assemble bikes and toys and fix things, including plumbing leaks. President Monson joked about her abilities compared to his inabilities: “Several years ago my dear wife went to the hospital. She left a note behind for the children: ‘Dear children, do not let Daddy touch the microwave’—followed by a comma ‘or the stove, or the dishwasher, or the dryer.’ I’m embarrassed to add any more to that list.”[1]

Although her husband was called to LDS Church leadership at a young age, and she often traveled with him on his assignments, she also spent many hours serving in the Relief Society and Primary. She served alongside her husband when he presided over the Canadian Mission from 1959 to 1962. In April 1988, the Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph’s Villa, an elder-care facility, presented both Frances and Elder Monson with the Continuum of Caring Humanitarian Award, honoring them for their dedicated and untiring service to the senior citizens of Utah. She and President Monson were both awarded honorary doctorate degrees from Utah Valley University in 2009 for their years of service to the Church and the community.

She died on May 17, 2013. She had been hospitalized for several weeks before her passing.