ALL the News about
Mormons, Mormonism
and the LDS Church
Mormon News: All the News about Mormons, Mormonism and the LDS Church
Posted 24 Feb 2001   For week ended December 01, 2000
Most Recent Week
Front Page
Local News
Arts & Entertainment
·New Products
·New Websites
·Mormon Stock Index
Letters to Editor
Continuing Coverage of:
Boston Temple
School Prayer
Julie on MTV
Robert Elmer Kleasen
About Mormon News
News by E-Mail
Weekly Summary
Submitting News
Submitting Press Releases
Volunteer Positions
Bad Link?

News about Mormons, Mormonism,
and the LDS Church
Sent on Mormon-News: 29Nov00

By Kent Larsen

Holiday Week Road Tragedies Decimate Two LDS Families

MCKINNEY, TEXAS -- Two separate highway accidents devastated separate LDS families during the just ended Thanksgiving holiday weekend in the US. In McKinney, Texas, the Johnson family lost both parents, Keith Owen Johnson, 38, and Nancy Lou Wittbank Johson, 34, in an accident that left all their five children, including a 13-month-old son, injured. Meanwhile, four members of the Fairbanks family of Orem, Utah were killed in a head-on collision Saturday outside Page, Arizona.

The Johnsons were remembered in a funeral Tuesday in the McKinney 2nd Ward, where 150 friends and relatives gathered to pay their last respects. The Johnsons were traveling on Texas highway 121 on Wednesday to visit relatives for Thanksgiving when the accident occurred. Keith and Nancy Johson were remembered as opposites that "fit togehter like a glove," according to Nancy's sister, Sara Smith. "They were a beautiful couple." Keith Johson was a systems analyst for Hewlett Packard who had recently completed a master's degree. His wife, Nancy, was remembered as a "spunky romantic" who was in the middle of writing several books.

McKinney 2nd Ward Bishop Steven L. Hammond expressed pride in the ward for the way it responded to the tragedy. He said church members rushed to the hospital to be with the children and that the family's house has been flooded with friends and neighbors offering sympathy and help. The youngest of the Johnson's five children, 13-month-old Caleb, remains in critical condition in the hospital, and the neighbors have set up a memorial fund for the children, (the oldest is 14) who will move with their Uncle and Aunt's family to Utah.

Meanwhile, the Fairbanks family lost their lives while traveling home to Orem, Utah after visiting a daughter and son-in-law in Texas. Wayne Fairbanks, 50, and Elaine Fairbanks, 47, were killed along with their two sons, Daniel, 18, and Joseph, 16, in the collision. They left behind three married children and ason, David Fairbanks, who is serving an LDS mission. Wayne's older brother, Richard Fairbanks, is worried about providing for his nephew when he returns from his mission, "He has lots of family and support. Its just that there's nobody here. It's been so devastating. [He's] going to come home and have nothing."


Family, friends remember couple
Dallas TX Morning News 29Nov00 P2
By Manolo Barco: Dallas Morning News

Crash claims 4 in Orem family
Deseret News 28Nov00 P2
By Sharon Haddock: Deseret News staff writer
Their car collides with a pickup outside Page, Ariz.


[an error occurred while processing this directive]

Copyright 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 Kent Larsen · Privacy Information