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A legacy of love

 Seventy years ago, on March 13, 1953, Jay Melvin Jeffery and Bonnie Vernice Ferguson married in the Manti Temple, and so the story began.

 The happy couple lived in Provo for two years, where they welcomed their son Melvin. Bonnie worked as a telephone operator while Jay attended BYU and completed his bachelor’s degree in business/accounting. 

Expecting their second son, Dennis, they moved to Chicago. There Jay worked for an accounting firm, Author Anderson. Bonnie was busy being a stay-at-home mother. After three years, they moved to Delta, Utah, to teach seminary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. While living in Delta, they welcomed their first daughter, Jaeleen. 

In 1962 the Church assigned Jay to be the treasurer of the Church College of New Zealand, so they moved their small family to the beautiful Islands of New Zealand. While there, they added three children, Jonathan, Tawa and Maria, to their family totaling six children. After five years in New Zealand, they returned to the United States, where they were back in Provo while Jay got his master’s degree in Educational Administration. 

In 1969 they moved to Fredonia, Arizona, where Jay was Superintendent of the schools there and three more children joined the family, Vernice, Paul and Phillip. Bonnie was loving being a mom, and if this wasn’t enough to keep her busy, she also sold Avon and Tupperware. They enjoyed staying busy and even building a house while doing much of the work themselves. While in Fredonia, the Church Indian placement program blessed them with another child Lucy who lived with them even into college and is considered a member of the family. 

In 1972 the now large family made their last move to Milton, Utah, where they welcomed their last two daughters, Julia and Michelle, totaling 12 children. Bonnie, besides tending to the needs of the family, enjoyed selling Tupperware and Avon. Later as the children got older, she was an EMT for Morgan City Ambulance and worked for the Morgan Senior Citizen center as a driver. 

Jay and Bonnie have lived in Morgan for just over 50 years, where Jay was the Assistant Superintendent of the Morgan School District for 15 years. He ended his carrier serving as the Director of Public Education for the Utah State Board of Education, retiring the year their youngest daughter graduated, 1995. 

From 1998 to 2000, Jay and Bonnie served as senior missionaries in the New Jersey South Mission. Following their mission, they have enjoyed serving in various callings in the Church, including being temple workers at the Ogden temple for many years. 

They love living in Morgan and enjoy returning home after traveling to different countries and other states to visit their 12 children and their spouses, 59 grandchildren and 38 great-grandchildren. And so the story does not end but continues.

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