02 Apr Bruce Richard Finlinson
February 3, 1953 – March 30, 2021
Bruce Richard Finlinson passed away at age 68 from the effects of Alzheimers. He was born in Payson, Utah to Richard and LaVon Finlinson and was the oldest of seven children.
Bruce’s strong belief in his Savior Jesus Christ drove everything he accomplished in his life. He placed high importance on loving his fellowmen as the Savior modeled.
He served an honorable mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to the Netherlands mission where his father had served his mission years earlier.
He had an innate eye for detail and appreciated the shape, design and color of a small ginkgo leaf as much as a full mountain range. He felt his calling was to design and beautify, and that he did! He often spoke of the goal of creating worlds in the afterlife.
Every person on the earth was to him a brother and a sister, so he determined early in life to make it a high priority to smile and speak to everyone he passed by on the street. This he did with a light in his eyes and a bright happy face. Kind words constantly tumbled from his mouth, often asking a young child in his mother’s arms if they were mommy’s big helper or asking if they were wearing new shoes. He especially loved older people he encountered and typically would pause to find out if they might have a story they would like to share.
Bruce truly mastered the art of loving his fellowmen. He had a belief in others and gave opportunities particularly to many in the design world.
Bruce was a talented interior designer with a great love for art, architecture, and culture. He was fortunate to be able to work for many years as lead designer for dozens of temples, contributing worldwide to places such as Madrid Spain, Preston England, Cardston Alberta, Billings Montana, Apia Samoa, SanDiego California and his cherished Nauvoo Illinois. Although he was a creative genius, his priority in every temple installation was the rapport he had with people he had pulled in to help him. He mentored and taught in a playful way, making sure other’s talents shone as he put the finishing touches on a temple installation.
He married Mykin Welsh in 1975. They were blessed with six children who eventually married and had children of their own. They were later divorced.
Bruce married Laurel Hartley Olsen in 2008 adding six stepchildren and additional grandchildren to the mix.
In spite of severe health challenges including Alzheimer’s decline for nine years and experiencing a stroke in recent months, he did not let his health condition define him. His last months were spent with his wife Laurel, in the comfort of his own home, locked into a broken body unable to get out of bed, but continuing to shine in a remarkable way. He still lit up when a familiar face entered the room, he still reached with his one good arm to hug his grandchildren, laughed when he heard the sound of a child, and literally danced from his bed. His last word was thank you.
He leaves behind his devoted wife, Laurel, and a family of seventy:
Jason (Nichole), Madison, Jacob, Emmy, Ashton, Jaxton
Mathew (Katie), Sophie, William, Roman, Colson
Christopher (Michele), Knoxx, Porsha, Banks, Maple
Carly (Patrick), Madelyn, Harper, Radwell, Hendrix Bruce
Jennie (Michael), Pierce, Hazel, Zion, Gabriel, Malia, Elijah, Charley
Alicen (Stephen), Dayton, Beckham, Stella
Bruce naturally brought his grandchildren into his world by kneeling down to their level and through his own zest for life patiently teaching them of the things he loved.
Jarom (Christine) Laela, Ivy, Soren, Freja
Tiffany (Jim), William
Andrew (Janelle), Ruby
Brooklyn (Ned), Oliver, Eleanor, Ada, Sam
Bethany (Kimball), Calvin, Jonas, Levi, Norah
Brittany (Chase), Annabelle, Betsy, Jonny
Bruce loved to lay on the floor and then announce to these little ones that he was their step grandpa so they better come and step all over him. They would jump on his back and giggle with delight, and so would he!
Bruce is also survived by his siblings Diane (Tom), Mark (Kimi), Gary (Aelly), and David (Thelma). He was preceded in death by his parents, Richard and LaVon, sister Karen (Eric) and brother Allen (Breta).
Friends and family are invited to a viewing Tuesday, April 6 at 10 a.m. at City View Mortuary, 1001 East 11th Avenue, Salt lake City. Masks are required. Funeral services will follow at 11:30. Interment at Salt Lake City Cemetery.
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