Birth Date: August 4, 1899 Death Date: May 30, 1994 Years as President: 1985–1994
“I have a vision of the whole Church getting nearer to God by abiding by the precepts of the Book of Mormon.”
Born on August 4, 1899, in Whitney, Idaho, Ezra Taft Benson learned early the principle of hard work on the family farm. He served a mission to Great Britain and after his return was married to his sweetheart, Flora Amussen, in 1926. He received his education in agriculture and went on to hold many important positions within the industry. He was called to be an Apostle after having been president of two stakes. From 1953 to 1961, he served as Secretary of Agriculture in the cabinet of U. S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower. On November 10, 1985, he became President of the Church. Having a resolute testimony of the power of the Book of Mormon, he emphasized the importance of it in daily scripture study, missionary efforts, and gospel teaching. His love of freedom, home, and family were also evident in his addresses and counsel to Church members. Despite his failing health, the Church continued to grow under his administration, temples were dedicated, and missionary work expanded around the world, particularly in eastern Europe. He died in Salt Lake City on May 30, 1994, at the age of 94.