Hugh W. Pinnock
Hugh Wallace Pinnock was born on January 15, 1934, in Salt Lake City, Utah. As a young man, he served a mission in the Western States Mission. While serving in Denver, Colorado, he met the Hawkins family, and upon returning home he dated and married Anne Hawkins.
Pinnock then attended the University of Utah, where he served as the student body president. He graduated from the university in 1958 with a bachelor’s degree in industrial management and then worked in the life insurance business.
Pinnock loved working in life insurance because he saw it as a way to care for others, which was one of his core desires. He built his agency from one of the smallest in Utah to the largest in the intermountain area, and he sees his livelihood as an opportunity to serve others. “You can’t separate the gospel or the Church from the rest of your life,” said Pinnock. “If you love serving people in the ward, you’ll love serving people in your work, whatever it is.” Throughout his career, Pinnock has been a member of numerous business and community service boards, and he received the Life Insurance Industries Life Achievement Award.
Though Pinnock thought it important to serve others in his professional career, his top priority was serving his family. He and Anne had six children and always made time for family. Sister Pinnock said, “We’ve found that we’re never so busy we have to ignore our children. We just include them!” Once, as president of a foundation, Pinnock was supposed to preside over a banquet, but it conflicted with a track meet that three of his sons would participate in. He decided that someone could substitute for him at the banquet but no one could substitute for him as a father, and he went to the track meet. Pinnock also took his family with him on various church and business trips and on other vacations where the family could be alone and enjoy each other’s company.
Pinnock also dedicated his life to building up the Lord’s kingdom. He has served as a bishop, a regional representative, a member of the General Priesthood Committee on home teaching, and the president of the Pennsylvania Harrisburg Mission. Many of the 600 young missionaries that he presided over would introduce their old mission president to spouses and children, and Pinnock said that he hadn’t “lost track of one of them.”
Following his release as a mission president, Pinnock was called to full-time discipleship as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy in 1977. Two years later, he was called as the Sunday School General President, a capacity in which he served from 1979 to 1986 and from 1989 to 1992. Elder Pinnock also served in the Presidency of the Seventy from 1986 to 1989.
Elder Pinnock delivered seven devotional addresses at Brigham Young University, speaking on topics ranging from tips to improve dating and marriage relationships to the Holy Ghost to characteristics of educated persons. His ability to talk about gospel principles in an applicable way make Elder Pinnock’s talks relatable, timeless, and memorable.
On December 16, 2000, at the age of 66, Elder Pinnock died from pulmonary fibrosis. His legacy of genuine compassion will always be remembered by the individuals he helped during his life of service.