Max Dutson was born on December 15, 1925, to his parents, Joseph Angus Dutson and Isadora Amelia McCombs in Grover, Wyoming. He passed away on October 16, 2023, in his home with loved ones by his side after having received care for over a year at the Southern Utah Veterans Home in Ivins, Utah.
He grew up in Grover, Wyoming where they lived next to his mother’s parents. His father passed away in 1928 when Max was 2 years old, and his mother was left to face the many struggles of raising the young family. Max and his siblings were sent to live for more than a year in Baker, Oregon, with their aunt while their mother completed training at a beauty school in Salt Lake City. Max also lived for a time in Huntsville, Utah, where he learned to love and work with horses.
In 1943, Max joined the Navy. He trained in Coronado, California, and Waianae, Hawaii, and was assigned to the ship, USS Belle Grove in the Pacific Theater of World War II. His main duty was to help operate the landing craft which delivered the Marines to shore. He fought in two major battles in the war: the Battle of Leyte Gulf in the Philippines, and Iwo Jima. He participated in the first wave of that invasion.
After returning home to Star Valley, Wyoming, he met and courted Myrna June Clark, also from Grover. They fell in love and were married in the Logan Temple on March 18, 1947. They have been married for more than 76 years. Max was a rancher, but he and his wife Myrna had also learned how to milk cows and care for them. In 1953, they moved to Emmett, Idaho, a place with a milder climate. They owned two different farms there which provided hard work for all the members of the family.
Throughout his life, Max, with his devoted wife by his side, was a faithful member of the
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He served in many leadership capacities over many years including in several bishoprics–as counselors and 8 years as a bishop, and as a member of several high councils in his stake. He loved the 3 years he served as an early-morning seminary teacher.
Max is well known for his honesty and integrity. Throughout his life he was fair and always thought of others first. His family and those who knew him were blessed by his great sense of humor. He was a man without guile.
His most priceless gift in his life was his love for and testimony of his Savior, Jesus Christ. His love for his sweetheart, Myrna, was enduring and always totally faithful.
Max is survived by his wife Myrna June Clark, St. George, Utah; his sister, Gayle McRill, Coeur d'Alene, Idaho; his children: Carolyn Thayn (Clyde-deceased), Emmett, Idaho, Porter Dutson (Barbara), West Jordan, Utah, Danette Garrett (Paul), Charlotte, North Carolina, Debra Van Wagoner (Dave), Castledale, Utah, Brad Dutson (Linda), Woods Cross, Utah, Dex Dutson (Sherry), Richland, Washington, Darin Dutson (Karla), Farmington, Utah, as well as 38 grandchildren, 105 great-grandchildren, and 14 great-great-grandchildren.
Max Dutson is preceded in death by his parents, his brothers, Allen Dutson, Ralph Dutson, Myron Dutson, and Wendell Christensen, and his sisters, Vera Dutson and Ellen Rose Smeding.
A viewing will be held in Centerville Utah, Friday, October 27, 2023, from 9:00 - 9:45, the funeral will follow at 10:00 am, at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Centerville Utah Canyon View Stake Center, 2110 North Main Street, Centerville, Utah 84014
Max’s body will be interred at Grover, Wyoming Cemetery at 10:00 am, on Saturday, October 28, 2023. Full military honors will be given for Max.
Arrangements are made under the direction of Spilsbury Mortuary, 110 S. Bluff St., St. George, Utah, (435) 673-2454.
Friends and family are invited to sign Max’s online guest book at www.spilsburymortuary.com
Life Story Info
Bishop Max Dutson interviewed me for my baptism at the age of 8 in Emmett, ID in December, 1967. The bishop’s office was just to the right when entering the cultural hall. Bishop Dutson was a stately looking man that reminded me of David O McKay but without white hair. I remember he appeared to have large hands when I shook his. As I recall all his children were musically inclined and treated the Emmett 2nd Ward often with musical numbers. As he delivered mail he amazed me as he would drive sitting on the right side of the car.