Latter-day Saint Life

Sen. Harry Reid memorial service: President Ballard talks friendship, Brandon Flowers plays subtle hymn tribute

President M. Russell Ballard spoke on Saturday, January 8, 2022, at a memorial service held in Las Vegas, Nevada, honoring the life of Latter-day Saint and former United States Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. Other notable speakers and attendees at the memorial service included President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, former President Barack Obama, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.

In an auditorium full of prominent world leaders and politicians, President Ballard opened his remarks by commenting that he was bringing with him the love of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He also testified of his calling as an Apostle and witness of the Lord Jesus Christ.

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According to Newsroom, President Ballard said that Senator Reid was “a man of faith—in word and in deed.” He said that the Nevada native and his wife, Landra, who joined the Church shortly after they were married at age 19, “have been faithful disciples of Jesus Christ, with a firm belief that we are all brothers and sisters, children of a loving Father in Heaven.”

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During his 34-year career in Washington, Reid rose to become the highest-ranking elected Latter-day Saint ever to serve in the United States. “Even during his years as one of the nation’s most powerful political leaders,” President Ballard commented, “[Harry] always made time to minister ‘to the least of these,’ and he did it one by one.”

You can watch President Ballard’s remarks in the player below:

Current Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer also spoke at the services and described Reid as someone who “always stuck up for the underdog and the little guy” and that “Harry drew a lot of that compassion from his faith.” He remembered that Reid always kept a copy of the Book of Mormon in his office. In his remarks, Schumer, the first-ever Jewish Senate Majority leader, quoted from 2 Nephi 9:13, saying the verse gave him comfort at the loss of his friend and mentor:

“O how great the plan of our God! For on the other hand, the paradise of God must deliver up the spirits of the righteous, and the grave deliver up the body of the righteous; and the spirit and the body is restored to itself again, and all men become incorruptible, and immortal, and they are living souls.”

Fellow Nevada native and Latter-day Saint Brandon Flowers also performed two musical numbers during the service, one of which was the Nevada state song, “Home Means Nevada,” which Reid requested Flowers sing in his office when the two met at the US Capitol in 2009.

“It was just an inspiration for me because here was the Senate majority leader and he came from basically the same dirt that I came from and we shared the same faith,” Flowers recalled. 

According to ABC News, during the service, Reid’s son Leif explained that his father was such a huge fan of The Killers that just before losing his battle with pancreatic cancer, The Killers’ music was the only thing he wanted to hear.

At the services, The Killers’ front man performed “Be Still” from the band’s 2012 Battle Born album. At the conclusion of the song, Flowers added in a melody Latter-day Saints will easily recognize from the beloved hymn “God Be with You Till We Meet Again.” You can watch his performance from the memorial in the player below.

You can watch the entire memorial service here:

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