Dana Lee Thelin

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September 28, 1944 - May 3, 2023

Dana Lee Thelin, beloved friend, mother, grandmother, and wife passed away peacefully on May 3, 2023 in Salt Lake City, Utah, at the age of 78. She was born on September 28, 1944, in Redding CA and lived in West Linn, Oregon growing up. Dana is survived by her loving husband, Jay Thelin, with whom she shared 54 years of marriage. Their union was a testament to enduring love and companionship.

Dana was a devoted mother and is survived by her children: Jason Thelin, Tiffany Lowe, Tricia Jensen, Jonathan Thelin, Joshua Thelin, Jared Thelin, and James Thelin. Dana was preceded in death by her daughter, Tammy Thelin, her parents Udo Wartena (a gold miner), and Donna Stoddard Wartena (a cowgirl from Blackfoot Idaho who was a nurse during her life), and her Brothers Grant Wartena and Scott Wartena. Dana's life was further enriched by her grandchildren, who brought her immense joy and laughter. She was known as Grandma Darling to her 25 grandchildren and many others. She took them on adventures, gave them many life lessons and taught them to work hard.

Dana graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in Theater. Following her graduation, Dana's passion for theater continued to shine as she made significant contributions to her community. She started a dance team at West Linn High school called “The Debutants”. She directed and did costuming for the Franklin Elementary Operettas. Dana also started and directed the Dixon Spectacular and the PHASE spectacular Productions for 20 years. Through her vision and leadership, thousands of Provo City students had the opportunity to perform on stage.

Her relentless work ethic and refusal to slow down were an inspiration to all who knew her. Dana's life was marked by selfless service and meaningful contributions to her community. Dana's commitment to education and the well-being of students led her to serve as the PTA president at various schools. She held this role at Franklin Elementary, Dixon Middle School, Provo High School, and Provo City PTA. Her leadership and tireless efforts greatly enriched the educational experiences of countless students, parents, and teachers.

One of Dana's remarkable accomplishments was the creation and management of the PHASE Program (Peers helping advance self-esteem), which ran for 14 years in the Provo School District. This program touched the lives of countless students and left a lasting impact on many people.

Dana's exceptional dedication to volunteerism earned her the Award of National Volunteer of America Life is eternal, and love is immortal, and death is only a horizon; which is the limit of our sight. where she had the honor of meeting with the First Lady, Barbara Bush in the White House. She also received the governor's award for Utah Woman of the year. Dana led a life filled with passion, creativity, and hard work. Throughout her life, Dana exemplified a tireless work ethic and an unwavering determination to achieve her goals. She was a true go-getter who always sought to make a difference in her community. Dana was known for her hardworking nature and her commitment to getting things done. She approached every task with determination and a drive to make a positive impact.

Dana's life was marked by her deep faith and commitment to sharing the gospel and serving others. Dana served multiple missions with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, dedicating her time and efforts to spreading the teachings of Jesus Christ. With her husband, she served in China, where she was an English teacher through the BYU China Teachers program for four years. Additionally, Dana served faithfully in the Helsinki Finland Mission, the San Francisco Mission, the Salt Lake City South Mission, and the Salt Lake City HQ Family History Mission where she was serving at the time of her passing. Dana's missionary service reflected her love for her fellow beings and her unwavering commitment to her faith.


Funeral Service

Saturday, Jun. 24, 2023 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Draper Stake center
12101 S 700 W
Draper, UT 84020

Memorial Service

Saturday, Jun. 24, 2023 4:30 PM - 5:30 PM
Dingle, Idaho Chapel
4197 Dingle Rd
Montpelier, ID 83254

Graveside Service

Saturday, Jun. 24, 2023 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM
Dingle, Idaho Chapel
500 Cemetery Rd
Dingle, ID 83233

Life Story Info


Tiffany Lowe

Post Date

Jun 10, 2023


Personal Info


Redding, California, United States


Salt Lake City, Utah, United States





Religion and Beliefs

Latter-day Saint
Concerned about this Life Story? Please let us know.
NEXT Pamala Jean Schmidt Hyde Pamala Jean Schmidt Hyde


My Aunt Dana was a beautiful soul and shone her light brightly to all around her! She accepted everyone where they were at on their journey of life❤️I’m so grateful for her sweet friendship with my mother, her sister in law. They had many experiences over the years, but more recently She went with mom on an Alaskan cruise and they had great fun! When my mom was passing in 2021 Aunt Dana came to visit and they reminisced about heaven together. With tears in her eyes Aunt Dana said “When we die we’ll go on a cruise to Panama Canal together and it’ll be free!” It was the sweetest moment to experience her deep love for my mom. For this was a bucket list item my mom wasn’t able to experience in this life. Thank you Aunt Dana for your sweet soul and blessing all around you. ❤️

Kali Barrio , Othello, WA, US Jun 24, 2023

Dana spent so much time enriching the lives of the people she came in contact with.

Her volunteer work with local schools helped shape young people and gave them tools to become capable adults.

I don’t know if the school board understood how important the leadership, self-esteem and teamwork skills she taught us were in impacting our development , we probably didn’t know at the time.

I will always be grateful for the one on one time I got to spend with her revamping the program into manageable pieces.

She had a great sense of humor, she was a hard worker and she was pretty good at the advice. She was my Mr Feeny.

We had talked on occasion over the years. At one time she offered me the Phase scrapbooks and now I wish I had made more of an effort to get them.

She was a bright light, a beautiful soul and the world has lost a rare treasure. My heart goes out to her family.

Sherri , Salt Lake City, UT, US Jun 23, 2023

Thank you for changing our lives! We love you!

Benji and Melissa Pearson

Melissa Pearson Jun 15, 2023