Saturday, July 29, 2023
11:00am - 12:00pm (Mountain time)
Everett Davidson LaFollette was born 26 October 1925 in a rented 2-room farmhouse northeast of Burlington, Big Horn County, Wyoming, the first son and third child of Edward Bryan LaFollette and Ida May Davidson Allen LaFollette. Over the course of the next 13 years, 6 more children joined the family, for a total of 9 children, plus 3 older boys born to his mother, Ida, from a previous marriage. They moved frequently, always in the Burlington area as finances dictated.
On July 11, 1944, Everett was drafted into the Army in Denver, Colorado, and sent to Camp Walters, TX for training until November 18, 1944. He earned a Sharp Shooters Medal and could hit the target at 500 yards. He then was sent to Fort Ord, near Los Angeles, CA for further training.
On January 1, 1945 he was part of a large group loaded on the USS Anderson, a large transport ship, and shipped across the Pacific Ocean to New Guinea, then on to Leyte Island in the Phillipines, where they were assigned to tents and told to await assignment to a unit. Most of his friends were shipped out within a few days, but he was overlooked and stayed there for 3 months before being taken to Manila city, put on a train and taken to the north end of Luzon Island to another Depot. After several days, he was then assigned to the 511th Parachute Infantry Company D, then taken by truck to a jungle area, where they patrolled by day and watched from fox holes at night.
After 2 weeks of this, they were taken to a mountain top on the southern end of Luzon Island where they could see around in every direction. They were there for 2 weeks, and most of the time the Army air crew were flying over their position and strafing with 50 caliber shells during each day. They had to keep their steel helmets on to protect from falling shell casings.
About the 20th of May they were taken off the mountain to a rest area, where they got to swim at the beach or visit a PX for 2 weeks. He attended an Army/Navy football game in the Manila stadium.
Then they had to go to training camps again. He was asked to take paratrooper training, but said no, so he was taken to glider training instead. Because most of the men in D company were paratroopers, he was transferred to the Headquarters Company, and then assigned to work as an assistant cook. This removed him from other training duties, and he did not have to carry his rifle, although he still had it.
As the war continued his outfit was on alert all the time. About Aug 1st they got orders to pack up, and they were taken to the airport on Luzon Island, where they stayed in a bivuac near the runway. 2 days later the Army brought in a large fleet of B24 bombers and loaded them up with as many soldiers and equipment as possible. The first 6 planes took off without mishap, but the 7th crashed at the end of the field. Everett was on the 8th plane, and the operation was cancelled. Next day a fleet of C46 transport planes came and they were all loaded and flown to Okinawa, where they were unloaded and told to stay near the runway in tents with C rations and nothing to do for a week.
Then they were loaded on C54 transport planes and flown to Japan as part of the first American Army Occupation force on Japan’s mainland. They didn’t know what reception they would receive, so they set up for resistance, but nothing happened. Next day they were loaded onto Japanese charcoal-burning trucks and taken to Yokohama Harbor. There was nothing to do. They sat on the dock, which was mostly dilapidated or destroyed before they got there. Then the Battleship Missouri pulled into the harbor about half a mile from shore, and the armistice was signed there.
Then they were taken to a train yard, loaded into cattle cars and taken to Morioka, up in the mountains on the north end of the main island, where he became a lead cook on his own shift, promoted to Tech Sergeant 3rd Class. In August 1946 he was offered a promotion to Staff Sergeant if he would reenlist for another year, but he chose instead to return home to the farm. He was officially discharged at Camp Beal, CA August 17th, 1946.
He worked the farm, then in September 1947 went to the Idaho Falls Temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints to receive his endowments. Then after a few months as a sheep herder, he went to BYU in Provo, UT, where he studied Genealogy, Book of Mormon, Cabinet Making/Woodworking, and Speech. The family farm wasn’t doing all that well financially, though, so his schooling was interrupted by stretches when he had to return to help with the farm. They raised beans, corn, grain, hay, cows, sheep, pigs, turkeys, and geese. They also had chickens, and his mother sold eggs to many of the grocery stores in Cody, WY, some 50 miles away.
In April 1951 when he was home from school working the farm, he got a letter from the government saying his GI payments for schooling would stop at the end of July unless he was enrolled in school at that time. He couldn’t get to school, so talked to his bishop about a mission, and was called in late August to the Eastern States Mission, which covered Kentucky, Tennessee, and West Virginia, returning home November 1, 1953.
On the 5th of November 1953 while helping his father round up young calves for branding, his horse stumbled over a calf that ran in front of it, and they both went down. Everett was unconscious for 5 days in the hospital before waking up. He slowly recovered at home until around Christmas that year.
December 31, 1953, he took Margaret McIntosh to a New Years Dance in Lovell, WY, about 35 miles from Burlington. He got a job as a hod carrier for a brick construction outfit, building brick houses and businesses from Worland, WY to Helena, MT. He traveled from wherever he was working back to Burlington on the weekends to continue courting Margaret. When they got engaged, she was working as a schoolteacher in Manderson, WY. In June 1954, his work took him to Helena, MT, closer to the Alberta Temple in Cardston, Alberta, Canada, so July 28, 1954, they were married there.
In 1964, he attended Northwestern Community College in Powell, WY, graduating with an associate degree in 1967. They then moved to Logan, Utah, so he could attend Utah State University, from which he graduated with a degree in Business Education in June 1969.
Everett always worked hard to provide for his family and moved often over the earlier years of their marriage, from several small communities in northern Wyoming to Salt Lake City, Kearns, Logan and Hyrum in Utah. Some of the jobs he worked include operating bean mills, working in several hardware stores and/or lumber stores, managing a grocery store, mixing and selling paint, manufacturing furnace housings, farming, hod carrier, sheep herder, dairy farmer, department VP at a gypsum plant, restaurant cook, high school teacher for business math and occupational studies, and building a city drinking water pipeline. He worked for many years as a church custodian before retiring in October 1992.
Everett was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints all his life, and served faithfully in numerous callings, including as ward clerk in more than one ward over the years.
In 1993, Everett and Margaret served a genealogy mission in England for 15 months, returning for an emergency surgery after he developed a cerebral hematoma in 1994. Once he was recovered, they completed their mission in Salt Lake City, working on the 1881 British, Scotch, and Wales Census project.
Then in August 1997 they left to serve in the Fort Worth Texas mission as Genealogy consultants, serving in Denton and Lubbock Texas, returning in February 1999.
In 2001 they were called as ordinance workers in the Billings, Montana, Temple, and served there until July 2002, when they were in a serious car accident that led to their release. Once they recovered, though, they continued going 150 miles one way to the temple one day every week until July 2013.
In September 2013, Everett was hospitalized for a month with pancreatitis. When his recovery wasn’t going well after that time, the doctors wanted him to go to Billings to a specialist. Instead, Everett and Margaret moved in with their eldest daughter, Eve, in Ogden, Utah, where there were also specialists, and continued with them for nearly 10 years until mid-May 2023, when they moved to Lotus Park Senior Living Center in West Haven, Utah.
While living with Eve, Everett spent considerable time working with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints genealogical indexing program, reading photographed records and entering the information into searchable databases for the benefit of genealogical researchers. He indexed and/or reviewed over 400,000 names.
June 23, 2023, Everett was hospitalized with congestive heart failure, and returned to Lotus Park on the 28th, very weak and almost bedridden. Within a couple weeks of his passing, he was visited one after another by all of his living children, including those living out of state, as he slowly regained a little strength, although he remained in need of help with many things. Sunday the 16th, he sat in his wheelchair on the back patio with family and won a game of Uno. Then Monday morning, the 17th, his system started shutting down and he passed away peacefully at 5:31 that evening at the age of 97.
Over the course of their married lives, Everett and Margaret had 7 children: Eve Ann (md. Grayson Douglas Orr, 4 children), Mark McIntosh, deceased (divorced, 4 living children, 1 deceased), Ray McIntosh (md. Susan Lynn Werner, 2 children), Jack McIntosh, deceased (md. Shauna Michelle Smith, 3 children, plus 1 child from previous marriage), Paul McIntosh (md. Kathey Lynn Whiting, 4 children), Melinda (md. Shawn David Ambrose, deceased, 7 children), and Amy (md. Thomas Andrew Pondolfino, 2 children). Everett is survived by 2 sisters and a brother, his wife of 69 years, 5 children, 27 grandchildren, and 25 great grandchildren.
We honor him today for his integrity and example in enduring to the end.
Funeral services held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, July 29, 2023, at Roy Utah West Stake building, 5080 S 3100 W, Roy, Utah 84067.