Here are some precious glimpses into President Monson's life as a father, grandfather, and servant of God.
On the occasion of his 90th birthday, children and grandchildren shared fond memories of [President Monson] a prophet of God who found time and occasion to be a warm and loving father and grandfather.
Eldest son Tom recalled: “After my father was assigned supervision of the Church in Western Europe, he began traveling with a much larger suitcase. This was during the Iron Curtain era when Germany was divided by the infamous Berlin Wall. For each trip to Europe, my mother packed a large suitcase with far more of my father’s clothing than he could possibly require. The bag was heavy. Upon returning, it was always much lighter—because it was nearly empty.
“Dad dearly loved and respected the Saints residing in the German Democratic Republic (East Germany). He witnessed their hardships and poverty while living under Communist rule. Because Sunday clothes were extremely difficult for them to come by, Dad always took with him extra suits, dress shirts, and shoes. These he left in the GDR for use by the priesthood brethren.”
Daughter Ann M. Dibb said of her father that fulfilling his priesthood responsibilities has always been essential to him.
“Even though this service required long hours and extensive traveling, our family was blessed. I remember riding in the car as my mother would drop my father off at the airport or she would pick him up. Dad would always return home brimming full of stories. They’d be stories of faith where he would know who needed a special blessing, who needed to be thanked or visited, who the Lord wanted to serve in a specific calling."