Our dear mother, Ada Whiteley Coleman, passed on into the eternities on her favorite day of the week, Sunday, August 23, 2020 surrounded by her loved ones here on earth and beyond the veil. Born December 27, 1928, she was the second child and first daughter of George Molyneaux Whiteley and Ada Angeline Brough Whiteley. Ada had dark brown eyes and dark hair that greatly resembled her mother, and that no doubt accounts for her being named Ada after her mother. She has an 18-month older brother named Jay Molyneaux and a younger sister by almost 3 years named Marjorie.

Ada’s childhood was spent during the great depression. Fortunately, her family did not suffer to the same degree that many others did. She grew up in a nice home at 951 East First South, had good food and clothes, and even some of the luxuries of the day. Her elementary school days were filled with pleasant memories of teachers and friends at Wasatch School. Ada had good teachers that instilled in her a desire for school and for learning as did her paternal grandmother, Marjorie Alston Whiteley, who taught her the importance and love of reading.

In 1942 Ada with her family moved to 3735 South 2300 East where her father bought a 7-acre orchard along with a lovely home on the property. Ada began 9th grade at Irving Jr. High School in Holladay, Utah. She then attended and graduated from Granite High School from 1943 to 1946. Amongst various school activities, debate was the biggest and most time-consuming activity she participated in. She went on to debate in college at the University of Utah. College days were some of her most cherished memories. Ada was active in extra-curricular activities including publications, committees for school affairs, and debate where she traveled the country at University sponsored debate meets. A debate foursome consisted of Belva Barlow, Dick Clayton, Truman Madsen and Ada Whiteley. Ada also had memberships in organizations as Cwean, Mortar Board, Beehive, as well as the Tau Kappa Alpha national debate society. Ada graduated from the University of Utah in June 1950 with a B.S. degree in Sociology and a minor in Political Science.

Upon Ada’s graduation she received a mission call for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Because of the Korean War, the government would not let young LDS men go on missions until after they had completed their military service. At this time many lady missionaries were being called to help fill the great need for missionaries. She began her missionary service to the Eastern Canadian Mission in October 1950. Ada’s mission was a great learning experience for her. Having recently completed college she was well adapted to study. Ada decided to make her mission a time to concentrate on gospel study. She read many books as well as the scriptures which enabled her to lay a good foundation in gospel scholarship which helped build and increase her testimony and gave her the conviction that gospel living was the most important thing in her life. Ada was honorably released from her mission on April 30, 1952.

Shortly before Ada’s college graduation she met Wallace John Coleman, a brother of her friend Gloria Coleman. Their first date was June 1950 where they went with a group of friends to Lagoon to dance to the music of Spike Jones and his band. They dated through the summer before Ada left on her mission. Wally had just returned from his mission to Western Canada and was just getting started in school at the University of Utah. Wally and Ada wrote each other while she was serving her mission and Wally was attending school.

In September 1952, after her mission she found employment at the University of Utah as a secretary in the office of the president, A. Ray Olpin. She enjoyed being on campus again and her job made it possible for her to meet and affiliate with most of the faculty and deans of the University. Wally was still in school so they could often go to lunch together. They began to date seriously the summer of 1952 and became engaged in September of that year.

Ada and Wallace were sealed together June 25, 1953 in the Salt Lake Temple by John Longden, an Assistant to the Twelve. A garden reception was held at the home of Ada’s parents. Ada and Wally were given a building lot in Mount Meadows subdivision, the lot next to the home of Ada’s parents as the Whiteley property had been subdivided. They began designing and building their home at 2331 East 3700 South. They welcomed their first of four daughters Karen in June of 1954. They moved into their new home in January 1956 and added a second daughter Ada “Ann” in April of 1956. This birth was unconventional as Ann was born in the car en route to LDS Hospital. Mom enjoyed her home and taking care of the inside was her responsibility and she did very well, and Dad loved his yard, gardens and the animals for which he cared. In September 1959 their third little girl joined the family, Kay Lynn. In May 1963 their fourth little girl was born, Laura Lee.

Dad worked at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Salt Lake City for about 37 years. Mom and Dad enjoyed a variety of travels with brothers and sisters and friends. They visited England, Scotland, Germany, Prague, Czechoslovakia, Vienna, Austria, Switzerland, Mexico, Costa Rica, the Holy Land, and across the continental United States and Hawaii.

Early in their married life they joined with six other young married couples in a monthly study group. All of the couples had moved into the East Mill Creek Ward. They began their study group before any of them became parents and it continued for well over 60 years. Ada was also a member of a Literary Arts group of women. Monthly meetings where held where they shared their knowledge and expertise on a variety of topics. She also enjoyed her association in her local chapter of the Daughters of Utah Pioneers.

Ada’s life was one of service. To her family, Church and community. Served as PTA president, and in ward and stake youth and Relief Society boards and presidencies. Taught lessons on the stake and ward levels and was an extraction worker for the stake genealogy department. Taught Gospel Doctrine three different times. Served as a docent at the Church Museum of History and Art. In 1996 Ada and Wally began serving in the Salt Lake Temple two days a week as ordinance workers. After Wally’s death, Ada continued to serve faithfully in the Temple for many additional years.


Ada is survived by her four daughters and spouses: Karen (Warren Miller), Ann (Mark Glissmeyer), Kay Lynn (Tom Naylor), and Laura Lee (Jay Child). She is also survived by her 14 grandchildren, 24 great grandchildren, sister Marjorie Smith and sister-in-law Juanita Whiteley. Ada was preceded in death by her husband Wally, parents, brother Jay, and brother-in-law Stanley Smith.

Services are planned only for family members. Interment at Memorial Estates Mountain View Cemetery.

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Memorial Mountain View Mortuary & Cemetery
3115 East 7800 South
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Life Story Info

Post Date

Aug 24, 2020

Personal Info

Age

91
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