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The Wives of the Prophet and Apostles: A Brief Look at These Remarkable Women

by | May 12, 2018

Mormon Life


Barbara Bowen Ballard

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Image from Mormon Newsroom

Hometown: Salt Lake City, Utah

Married: August 28, 1951

Education: University of Utah

Barbara Bowen Ballard met her future husband while attending the University of Utah. While at the Hello Day Dance, M. Russell Ballard was introduced to her and danced with her for a total of 30 seconds. He was so stricken by her that he continued to pursue her until they got married on August 28, 1951. Over the course of their 50-year marriage, they have become the parents of 2 sons, 5 daughters, and their family has grown to include 41 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren. Sister Ballard has also lived a dedicated life of service, serving in the presidencies of the Primary, Young Women, and Relief Society organizations. And on March 28, 2002, she was honored as the Exemplary Woman of the Year at Brigham Young University–Idaho.

Patricia Terry Holland 

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Image from Mormon Newsroom

Hometown: St. George, Utah

Married: June 7, 1963

Education: LDS Business College, Dixie College, the Julliard School

Hobbies: Playing piano, singing

Patricia Terry Holland was born with a talent: the gift of music. From a young age she began playing the piano, and by the third grade, she was already accompanying her classmates’ singing. She continued to share her gift, accompanying all kinds of performances throughout high school and college. While attending Dixie College, Sister Holland broadened her musical talents when a professor recognized her beautiful singing voice and cast her as a lead in his musical, The Boy Friend. But Sister Holland didn’t stop there. She expanded her musical horizons and attended the esteemed Julliard School while her beau, Jeffrey Holland, was serving his mission. When he got back, the two were married in the St. George Temple. In addition to perfecting her musical talents, Sister Holland applied her sharp intellect while serving on the boards of ZCMI, Deseret Book Company, and the Primary Children’s Regional Medical Center. Sister Holland has also written the book A Quiet Heart as well as co-authored To Mothers and On Earth as It Is in Heaven with her husband, Elder Jeffrey R. Holland.

Harriet Reich Uchtdorf

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Image from Mormon Newsroom

Hometown: Frankfurt, Germany

Married: December 14, 1962

Education: Bachelor’s degree in business administration

Career: Worked with the Frankfurt public transportation department prior to her marriage

Harriet Reich Uchtdorf grew up in Germany while it was recovering from World War II. She lived a meager lifestyle, but those humble circumstances helped lead her to the Church. When Sister Uchtdorf was a little girl, a U.S. soldier gave her a stick of gum. That simple moment stuck with her, and years later, the memory of that kind deed gave Sister Uchtdorf the confidence and desire to invite the American Mormon missionaries into her home. She was baptized at 13. She met Dieter Uchtdorf through the Church’s Mutual Improvement Association, and the two were sealed December 14, 1962, in the Bern Switzerland Temple. According to her daughter, Sister Uchtdorf loved track and field and did the best cartwheels. Her daughter and her friends would even challenge her to cartwheel contests (Sister Uchtdorf would win). She has also authored the book The Light We Share, in which she details the impact of the gospel in her life and how we can share that light with others.

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