Kalyn's Kitchen

Edgar Martell Denny (1925 – 2011)

(Photo of Edgar Martell Denny taken by my future nephew-in-law Nick Gilson.)

My wonderfully loving, compassionate, and intelligent father Edgar Martell Denny died peacefully in his sleep on Thursday, January 13.  All who knew him were touched by his deep wisdom and gracious example of unconditional love.  I am grateful to him for many lessons learned, traits passed on, and happy memories.

In recent years dad never really liked his photos, but I thought this picture taken at his 85th birthday party a few months ago did capture his fun personality. (Photo by my future nephew-in-law Nick Gilson; my apologies to Nick because I was also taking pictures that night and originally thought it was my photo.)

When I was in junior high school, dad graduated from the University of Utah Law School, being awarded the Order of the Coif for academic merit.  He finished law school in four years despite working 40 hours a week and having a house full of children. (Any guesses which one is future blogger Kalyn?)

Here’s the Denny family a few years later.  This photo has gotten really faded through the years, but it’s one of my favorites.  Thanks to a thoughtful reader named Meg who restored the photo for me and sent it in an e-mail! (Our adopted sister Vida isn’t in either of these photos, so this must be before she came to live with us.)

My parents were happily married for over 50 years, and were loving companions through many years of raising children, church service, and lots of family evenings at home eating popcorn.

When my mother died in 1998 my father married Vera Holman, a lovely woman who was a great companion for dad, and they had three happy years together.

After Vera died he married Norma Noel, who lovingly cared for him for many years.  This photo shows them on the occasion of my dad’s 80th birthday party in 2005.

There have been a lot of four-generation photos through the years, but this is one of the more recent ones with my brother Dave, his son Nate, and Nate’s son Coleman.  Dad is survived by 10 children, 39 grandchildren, 49 great-grandchildren, 8 stepchildren, 29 stepgrandchildren and 32 step great-grandchildren.

The last few years of his life dad lived in an assisted living center, and I went there several times a week and cooked lunch for him.  Those meals with my dad will always be precious memories for me.  While I’m spending the upcoming week with my family, I’m going to feature a few recipes I’ve posted that were my dad’s favorites.

I love you dad and feel deeply blessed to be your daughter.

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    161 Comments on “Edgar Martell Denny (1925 – 2011)”

  1. I was the mission secretary in Albuquerque when your father served as mission president. I loved my mission but especially the 6 months I spent in the office working with him every day. That was the highlight of my service.

    One day I asked him what his middle initial stood for. He told me, thought for a moment and said, "I never really like the name Edgar. Martell wasn't much better." This was said with a huge smile on his face.

    I've been digitizing my mission slides which is what got me thinking about your father. I'm sad that he's passed, but have many happy memories of him and Sister Denny.

    Alan Wareham
    New Mexico Albuquerque Mission
    1981 – 1982

  2. Kayln,

    Just saw this. So sorry for your loss..your father sounds like an amazing man!..
    Shawn K

  3. I'm so sorry for your loss Kalyn. What a lovely post. Sending you comforting thoughts…

  4. Kalyn, I am so sorry for your loss. This was a wonderful tribute to your father. It looks like he had a full life and was loved by many.

  5. This is a beautiful tribute and so are his favorite recipes. I'm so sorry again. My Dad's just gone into a nursing home (6 hours away sadly) and boy is it tough. You're in my thoughts.

  6. I'm so sorry for your loss.

  7. What a wonderful tribute to your father. And what a legacy he leaves behind.

  8. My condolences for you and your family, it is always painful to lose a parent, even if it's the "natural" movement of life.

    I send you a warm hug, you did a wonderful tribute to him…

  9. Kalyn, my sincerest condolences for your loss. You wrote a beautiful tribute and are so lucky to have him for so long. Be well.

  10. What an amazing man!

  11. I'm so sorry for your loss, but what a beautiful post and pictures. Thank you for sharing.

  12. What a lovely tribute to your dad, Kalyn. My heart is breaking for you, I know how much you loved and will miss him.

  13. I'm so very sorry to hear this Kalyn! Donna and I both send our deepest sympathies.

  14. My condolences on your loss Kalyn. Big hugs to you.

  15. Thank you again to everyone for the loving comments. It does make me smile to hear that others are enjoying the foods he loved so much.

  16. Kalyn, my condolences on the loss of your father. May you and your family find comfort in all those wonderful memories. Our family is enjoying some of his favorite dishes at this time too.

  17. This is a very sweet tribute to your father. It sounds like he left you with lots of wonderful memories.

  18. Your father looks so handsome in his tribute in the paper today. Sounds like he led a full life being in the Navy and then graduating from law school while married with 10 children. Wow. What a great father. I see why you are so proud of him.
    Sending caring thoughts your way, Kalyn.
    from Wanda

  19. condolences on the death of your father and warm wishes to you and your family – he sounds like an amazing person and it is lovely to see the family photos

  20. So very sorry for your loss. He sounds like a wonderful man.