From the Church

Sister Donna Packer, wife of late Pres. Boyd K. Packer, passes away

President Boyd K. Packer with his wife, Donna.
Intellectual Reserve, Inc.

Donna Edith Smith Packer, wife of the late President Boyd K. Packer (1924–2015), former president of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, died at home Saturday, March 5, 2022, at 10:25 p.m. from causes incident to age. She was 94.

Donna was precious to her husband and honored by her children, and she will be remembered for her strong belief in the eternal nature of families. Known for prioritizing traditions and togetherness, she made a lasting impact on her posterity totaling more than 200 members. President Packer shared his love for Donna in his final general conference address in April 2015: “When it comes to my wife, the mother of our children, I am without words. The feeling is so deep and the gratitude so powerful that I am left almost without expression. … I am grateful for each moment I am with her side by side and for the promise the Lord has given that there will be no end.”

Born October 20, 1927, in Brigham City, Utah, to William Waldamer Smith and Nellie Edith Jordan, Donna was the only daughter and the oldest of four children. From her youth, Donna developed a love of reading, a keen interest in family history and a talent for music, playing the piano and violinAs a young woman growing up during World War II, she worked at her father’s gas station, in the local cannery and in Brigham City orchards picking fruit. She graduated from Box Elder High School in 1945 and earned a scholarship in music to attend Weber State College. She graduated from college with an associate degree of science in 1947.

In 1946, Donna attended a Church gathering where a young man, Boyd Kenneth Packer, was the guest speaker. She later commented that he made a striking impression on her. “I couldn’t say I knew he was the one,” she said, “but I knew he was the kind of person I wanted to marry.” Boyd and Donna courted and were married on July 28, 1947, in the Logan Utah Temple. They established their home in Brigham City and together had 10 children, seven sons and three daughters.

You can read the obituary on Church Newsroom here.

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