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Eli Ray Morris and Tina Matilda Kunzler

HUSBAND:
Eli Ray MORRIS. (Known as Ray). [Familytree].
Ray was born 19 July 1892 in Rosette, Box Elder County, Utah; son of James Newberry Morris and Harriett Louisa Elliott.

Ray's mother died when he was only 9 years old, and he was cared for by his older sisters until his father remarried. As a young boy, Ray was educated in the Rosette school, for which building his father, James Newberry Morris, had made the bricks. Later Ray attended Brigham Young Academy in Logan, Utah for three years, where he majored in botany and horticulture.

Ray married Tina Matilda Kunzler on 9 December 1914 in the LDS Temple in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah.

Ray continued building the ranch that his father had begun. He built the ranch headquarters about a half mile to the southwest of his boyhood home, and placed it in the edge of the cedars where it would be protected from the wind. He built his own house and also corrals, a barn and outbuildings. He continued to purchase land and expand the ranch's holdings.

When the weather was bad Ray would ride to the school in Rosette to pick the children up from school.

Ray was a high priest in the Rosette ward and later Park Valley Ward and he did extensive missionary work. Ray first went on a mission to Missouri. He was attending stake conference in Holbrook, Idaho in 1925 when the stake presidency asked him to serve a mission. They told him to go home and prepare for it. He was set apart for this mission on the 8th of December 1926.

After serving honorably in Grand Island and Hastings, Nebraska, he was released on the 4th of June 1928.

Ray served many callings in the church. Among them, he was a counselor in the Rosette bishopric from about 1939-1941. He served as president of the YMMIA, and was also stake high priest quorum leader in the Bear River stake in the later 1950's.

In 1941, shortly after LeGrand had returned from his mission, Ray broke his back and LeGrand took over the ranch work. Royal was on a mission to the Central States Mission at the time.

Ray went on two missions with his wife Tina. Their first mission was to the North Central States Mission from 1963 to 1965 where they served in Montana and South Dakota. Then from 1967 to 1969 they served in the same mission that Ray had been called to in 1926, the Western States Mission. This time they served in Hays, Kansas, and in Fort Morgan, Colorado. Throughout his life, Ray served several stake missions, both individually and with his wife Tina.

He died on 14 October 1980 at River View Hospital in Idaho Falls, Bonneville County, Idaho, and was buried in the Park Valley Cemetery in Park Valley, Box Elder County, Utah. Ironically, he had traveled that day to Idaho Falls to attend the funeral of a cousin. While there in Idaho Falls, he had a stroke and was rushed to the hospital, but died there.

WIFE:
Tina Matilda KUNZLER. [Familytree].
Tina was born 8 February 1894 at Rosette, Box Elder County, Utah; daughter of Jacob Kunzler and Louise Ott. Tina received her name because her parents were amazed at how tiny a baby she was. She never grew very big, and even as an adult, at about 4' 9" in height, she was always used by her grandchildren and great-grandchildren as a sort of measuring stick to see how tall they were getting. They really felt grownup when they became as tall as Grandma. Tina was one of 12 children.

Both the Kunzler and Ott families are originally from Switzerland. Her parents, Jacob and Louise, joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Switzerland and moved to Utah to be with the Saints. Both families came to Utah after the railroads were built.

Tina grew up in a very close and loving family. She also had many friends in the valley as well. As a young girl she loved to make beautiful valentines and she kept the many valentines she received over the years in a special book. She and her brothers and sisters went "Eastering" on Easter Sunday. They would take baskets and fill them with wild flowers, one basket for the family and one for the school teacher. Then they would have a lovely picnic and play games together.

Tina was educated in the Rosette school at a time when young girls usually did not go beyond the 8th grade in education. When she completed the eighth grade, Tina stayed at home for a few years to learn cooking and sewing in preparation for her future role as wife and mother. Later, Tina went for one winter to a sewing & dressmaking school in Ogden, Utah. She became very proficient at sewing and was known as an excellent seamstress.

From the time she was a little girl, Tina had her eye on Eli Ray Morris. They saw each other of course at school and at church and valley functions. Ray liked Tina too and before Ray's father died he said to Ray, "Tina is the one for you, Ray." It took a few years before the two settled down. In the meantime, when Ray went up to college in Logan, he missed Tina and said that the dances were not the same without her. Tina always loved Ray dearly. Tina and Ray (Eli Ray Morris [F10]) were married 9 December 1914 at Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah. Tina always referred to him tenderly as "Papa" and her whole world revolved around making him contented.

Tina, known for her seamstress skills, sewed her children's clothes. When LeGrand went on his mission, he wore a brand new suit made by Tina just for the occasion.

Tina was also well known for her other homemaking skills. She was a talented cook who could make plain food taste delicious and her baked goods were cherished and long remembered by her children and grandchildren. Tina was also a meticulous housekeeper. However, one day she was tired and not feeling well, so she left her bed unmade. That just happened to be the morning when visitors dropped by and Tina was mortified. She vowed she would never leave her bed unmade again. And she kept that promise. There was also a saying around the valley at the time that Tina's blue and white linoleum was kept so clean that you could eat off the floors.

Tina's first child, Seletta Rae MORRIS was born 11 August 1915 at Harrisville, Weber County, Utah. Tina had gone there to stay with relatives until the baby was born.

Her second child, LeGrand Elliott Morris was born 3 November 1916 at the family home that his father built in Rosen Valley, which is what the family called the area where the ranch was located, west of Rosette, Box Elder County, Utah. LeGrand was born on a cold November day. Fires were kept in the parlor and bedroom for his mother Tina and the new baby. But while his father was out doing the chores, the kitchen fires went out and all their house plants froze.

LeGrand was born 3 weeks early so they had no time to get Tina to a doctor. Aunt Mary (Mamie) Cobia Morris was called to deliver the baby. Someone had to run to the old home up in the upper field, where the Cobias were staying, to get her. Aunt Mary was a registered nurse and a sister-in-law to Ray & Tina. When neighbors stopped in to see the new baby, someone said, "What a grand little boy!" This inspired Tina to name her new little son LeGrand. Not long after his birth, LeGrand was blessed by his grandfather, Jacob Kunzler, in the Rosette ward of the Curlew stake.

Royal Harold Morris was the third, and last, child born to Tina on 12 February 1918 at Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah.

The family always had daily prayers in their home and the children were taught to pray. Tina would review their Sunday School lessons with the children during the week and would read to the children from the Book of Mormon. After church on Sundays, the family would go for dinner to the home of Tina's parents, Jacob and Louise Kunzler. The children would play around the farm and help with the chores. Tina's mom always had a treat for the grandkids.

Tina was active in the Rosette ward and was a Sunday School teacher for many years. She was also a faithful primary teacher. Later, Tina was called to be president of the Relief Society in the Rosette Ward, a calling that lasted for several years. Tina was the mother of three children: Seletta, LeGrand & Royal.

One day, in 1925, while they were attending stake conference in Holbrook, Idaho the stake presidency asked Ray to serve a mission. They told him to go home and prepare for it. He was set apart for this mission on the 8th of December 1926. After serving honorably in Grand Island and Hastings, Nebraska, he was released on the 4th of June 1928.

Later, Ray and Tina went on two missions together. The couple's first mission was to the North Central States Mission from 1963 to 1965 where they served in Montana and South Dakota. Then from 1967 to 1969 they served in the same mission that Ray had been called to in 1926, the Western States Mission. This time they served in Hays, Kansas, and in Fort Morgan, Colorado. Throughout their life Ray and Tina also served together as stake missionaries.

Tina died 24 October 1988 at her home in Rosette, Box Elder County and was buried beside Ray in the Park Valley Cemetery in Park Valley, Box Elder County, Utah.

CHILDREN of Eli Ray MORRIS and Tina Matilda KUNZLER:
  1. Seletta Rae MORRIS. Born 11 August 1915 at Harrisville, Weber County, Utah. She served in the Eastern States Mission. She married Willard Herbert PITCHER on 9 September 1947.
  2. LeGrand Elliott MORRIS. [Familytree]. Born 3 November 1916 in Rosette, Box Elder County, Utah. He married Dorothea Bertha Ernestine KERSTEN on 30 October 1942 Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah. He died on 14 October 2005 in Burley, Cassia County, Idaho, and was buried in the Park Valley Cemetery, Park Valley, Box Elder County, Utah.
  3. Royal Harold MORRIS. Born 12 February 1918 at Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah. He married Mildred HUNTSMAN on 2 July 1946. Royal served in the Central States Mission from 1940-42. On his way out to his mission area, he met his brother LeGrand returning home from his mission.

SOURCES:
  1. LeGrand Elliott Morris Family Records.


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