Darrel Lew French

1930 - 2023

Darrel Lew French

Darrel Lew French was born to Ella Gwendolyn Jacobsen and Charles Alfred French on October 29, 1930, in Murray, Utah, which he would long maintain was the greatest city in the world. After two years as a missionary in the New England States Mission, and a further two years in the United States Army during the Korean War, Darrel returned to the University of Utah, where he was introduced to Barbara Nell Fisher. They were brought together by their shared love of music after a mutual friend arranged for them to join the same quartet, and were married a year later in the Salt Lake Temple on September 13, 1957.

After completing a Master’s Degree in Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Southern California and working for several years for the Los Angeles County Regional Planning Commission, Darrel and Barbara returned to Utah. While in California, their little family had increased by one with the birth of their first daughter, Lisa, and their family became complete a few years later with the addition of their second daughter, Linette, and their son, Brian. Darrel was a devoted husband, father, and—in later years—grandfather and great-grandfather. Nothing brought him more joy than bouncing a toddler on his knee and championing the right of grandchildren to eat as much ice cream as they wanted, whenever they wanted.

Darrel was deeply involved in his community, working for the Ogden City Planning Department, the Utah State Planning Coordinator, and as an independent planning and development consultant for numerous cities and counties throughout Utah. Later, he volunteered for more than a dozen years as a member of the Mount Olympus Community Council. Darrel also served faithfully in numerous church callings, including frequent stints as a Sunday School teacher, Stake Sunday School president, member of the Elder’s Quorum presidency, and member of the Mount Olympus North Stake High Council. The role he cherished most, however, and pursued everywhere he lived and for as long as he was able, was as a member of his ward and stake choirs.

Darrel passed away peacefully on July 19, 2023, at the age of 92. He is preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Jacquelin. He is survived by his beloved wife and companion of sixty-six years, Barbara; his sister, Gwen; his three children, Lisa, Linette (Peter), and Brian; his four grandchildren, Christian (Michael), Alexa (BJ), Brittany (Dylan), and Dillon (Katie); and five—soon to be seven—great-grandchildren. His family will be saying goodbye to him in a private ceremony.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to Utah Cancer Specialists.

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