Loren C. Dunn
Born on June 12, 1930, Loren C. Dunn was raised in Tooele, Utah, surrounded by many members of his community who taught him valuable life lessons. He was very fond of his Tooele roots. When he was a boy, his father bought a Guernsey cow for him and his brother. Soon another cow was added, and then another, until the boys were in charge of milking a number of cows. One day a neighbor alerted the boys’ father to all the things the boys were doing wrong in their work with the cattle. Dunn’s father, Alexander F. Dunn, replied, “Jim, you don’t understand. You see, I’m raising boys, not cows.” Thanks to the example of his father and others, Loren Dunn grew up to be a hard worker, lifelong commandment keeper, and dedicated servant of the Lord.
He was an all-state basketball player at Tooele High School, and upon graduation he continued playing ball at Brigham Young University. The six-foot six-inch center played on the team from 1950 to 1953, when he graduated with bachelor’s degrees in journalism and economics.
Following his graduation, Dunn served as a missionary in Australia from 1953 to 1954. When he returned home, he married Sharon Longden—the daughter of John Longden, assistant to the Quorum of the Twelve—in the Salt Lake Temple on December 15, 1959. The couple spent the beginning years of marriage in Dunn’s beloved Tooele as he was an editor for the Tooele Transcript Bulletin. Soon thereafter, however, Dunn and his family moved to Massachusetts where he pursued a master’s degree in public relations at Boston University. Due to his background in both journalism and economics, he worked as the director of communications for the New England Council for Economic Development until he was called to serve in the First Council of Seventy in 1968.
For the next 30 years—the rest of his mortal life—Elder Dunn served full-time in the Church. The Dunn family (which by now included five children) moved to the Philippines, Brazil, and New Zealand to fulfill various assignments. Elder Dunn especially loved his time spent in Australia when he was called to preside over Australia Sydney Mission from 1976 to 1978; he loved the missionaries who served under him as well as the Australian people he had served two decades before. Elder Dunn also served as the executive director of the Missionary Department and the Historical Department, as well as president of Nauvoo Restoration Inc. In 2000 Elder Dunn was granted emeritus status so that he could become the first president of the Boston Massachusetts Temple. He served in this capacity until he passed away on May 16, 2001.
Elder Dunn penned the words to the hymn “Testimony” (Hymns, 137) and throughout his life, he shared his testimony with countless others through word and deed. BYU was privileged to host him as a speaker at eight devotionals; each address varied in topic, but every speech invited its listeners to live the principles of the gospel to obtain celestial blessings.