Born in California in 1940, David Jacobsen Bennion spent most of his growing up and adult years in Palo Alto and his summers on Balboa Island. Though a mighty man in both body and spirit, David had the gentlest of hearts. He would first want to tell his wife, Connie, that he adores her beyond measure and thank her for giving him such a beautiful life.
Living with Dad meant hearing classical music in the wee hours of the morning, eating his homemade breakfasts, kneeling in family prayer, studying scriptures together, being chauffeured and made to feel the job was a great privilege, being read to, discovering love notes to Mom he’d stashed about the house, and seeing his eyes sparkle as he lovingly teased his wife or landed on a clever pun. He worked with us on our goals—whether it was his son’s basketball, tennis with a daughter at 5 am, or building blocks with a toddler. He’d say, “Let’s make a memory,” or “Connie, let’s make plans,” and adventures were sure to follow (perhaps within the hour)—it might be fishing with grandkids, a one-on-one bike ride, or piling into the car to go beaching, skiing, or hiking. He was not democratic—he’d call for family votes, but we all knew he’d declare Mom’s vote the winner. His deep base sang us to sleep—songs like Swing Low Sweet Chariot, Sixteen Tons, I Walk the Line, Amazing Grace, or Down in the Valley.
David earned his law degree at Stanford and was a highly successful trial attorney. A highlight of his career was working alongside some of the country’s top legal minds as a National Trustee for the American Inns of Court (an organization promoting a legal profession and judiciary dedicated to professionalism, ethics, civility, and excellence). He found great satisfaction in fighting for “the underdog” and was a formidable force to have on your side. However, even as a young, rising legal star, his profession never took precedence over family and faith.
David had tremendous love for God—his genuine love for all people (including the hard-to-love) was a natural extension of his faith, as was his unassailable integrity. He loved serving in various assignments for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, including full-time missions in France, Belgium, and Switzerland. Ever after, he loved to hear and speak French anywhere. He cared deeply for each missionary who served with him when he was President of the Swiss, Geneva mission as well as for those he served in various bishoprics and other Church assignments. David knew deep joy in his faith and was eager to share it with others. He watched for those in need, and he quietly helped.
We loved his witty sense of humor, and his ability to use scraps of time to make meaningful connections. He believed his greatest mission in life was to be a good father and husband—and his wife, six children, five children-in-law, and 22 grandchildren will tell you they’ve never seen it done better.
David passed away at home January 7, 2019. We love you beyond words Dad—merci pour tout.
Funeral services will be held Saturday, January 12, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. in the Manila First Ward Chapel, 3396 North 900 West, Pleasant Grove. Family and friends may attend a viewing from 9:30 – 10:45 a.m. prior to the services. Interment will be in the Provo City Cemetery. Condolences may be sent to the family at www.olpinmortuary.com.
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