Rick London and Lynne Rich were classmates in Morgan schools, they dated in high school and both graduated with the class of 1961. Rick prepared to be a missionary and Lynne went off to college at Utah State University. He returned from serving his mission in March 1965. She graduated from Utah State University, with a bachelor’s degree in Education, in June 1965. They were married in June 1966. Jokingly, Rick added “she supported me while I went to school.”
Rick graduated from University of Utah in 1968. One of his professor’s gave him some “good advice” about joining the service, which lead him to be a pilot in the Air Force.
They moved to Oklahoma for pilot school, where there first child, a daughter, Rachelle, was born. He then attended an upgrade School for 3 months, in Tennessee. He was promoted to 2nd Lieutenant and was transferred to the Philippines. Their daughter, Liisa (the Finnish spelling for Lisa) was born there.
The Londons came back to the states, but for Rick it was temporary. He was assigned to fly a 4-engine plane in Vietnam.
He was gone weeks at a time then come home for a week or two, then back to Vietnam. His work took him back and forth, while his growing family was in Topeka, Kansas. It was during this time that their son, Ryan, was born.
After returning to the states, the question arose, what next? Resumes were written and job applications were submitted. He received a call from Raymond Larson, Morgan School Superintendent, asking Rick to come back to Utah and teach school. Their prayers had been answered for they longed to come home.
While living away from Utah, they had gained some “great friendships”, Rick and Lynne agreed,”When you get away from family, the church becomes your family.”
Rick taught Math at the Morgan High School, for 4 years, then he went on to work commercial construction.
It was during this time that they began construction on their home in Morgan. It was completed in 1978.
Rick went back to college, using his GI Bill, and earned his second Bachelor Degree and a Masters in computers and mathematics. These skills got him hired on at Hill Air Force Base where he worked for 27 years.
Three more children were born to Rick and Lynne after returning to Utah. Rebecca, Mark and Heather.
Lynne first taught school in Salt Lake for 3 years. She stopped teaching school for a time to be home with the children. She returned to teaching in 1983 at Morgan Elementary. She retired after 30 years. “Teaching is awesome!” expressed Lynne. Both Lynne and Rick love education. Rick served on the Morgan School Board for 8 years. While on the board he was a member of Utah School Board Association, he was President of the association his last serving.
It seemed for the Londons, Rick reflected, “when one door closes one opens somewhere else.”
This has happened more than once in their lives. For example, when Rick was running for State School Board. Though he was defeated, he described it as a “blessing being defeated at the State School Board, because the position of Judge in the Morgan City Justice Court had opened up, shortly after. The City Justice Court has now been dissolved and combined with the County Justice Court.
Over the years, serving as judge, he gained “a lot of learning and great friendships from other judges that serve in various parts of the state.” He said, “They were good to help one another, if I had a question, there was someone I could call. I loved being a judge in a small town.... a bigger city is so busy, they don’t have the time to try to treat them fairly.”
During a portion of this time, Judge London also served as a bishop for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,. He said the two jobs “complimented each other.” In both places he tried always to be fair. Rick served as judge from February 2001 to August 30, 2011.
Lynne retired from teaching school at the end of last school year, May 2011. They submitted their paperwork for a mission, in April. Their mission call came on May 31st.
A new door for Rick and Lynne with their call to serve at the temple in Helsinki, Finland, for the next year and a half.
Since June, they have been conversing and learning the Finnish language through Skype with a return missionary who served in Finland. They get these lessons three times a week.
This will be the second LDS mission, Elder London has been called to serve in Helsinki, Finland. The first time was in 1962. There are a few differences this time. He has the companion of his choice, 1 1/2 years instead of 2 1/2 years, and this will be a service mission instead a proselyting one.
The Londons farewell was September 11th. They leave for the MTC on the 19th.
Four of their children served missions. Liisa served in Russia; Ryan served in Taiwan; Rebecca served in Liberty Jail Visitor Center in Missouri, and Mark served in the Philippines.
Rick and Lynne shared some feelings and thoughts about Morgan. They said, “If I had some recollections about Morgan and life in general, they would be,”
• “Members of the community really do care about one another and go out of their way to help a neighbor or a friend. Life is too tough to go at it alone all the time, there is always someone around who cares, and I find those people who care, are many in our community.”
• “Reflecting on growing up in Morgan, living here most of their lives,” our folks (in Morgan) love children and go to great ends to support them. I saw this especially when I taught high school later when I was on the school board.”
• “Treat everyone with respect and kindness. Don’t be too quick to condemn a person for some earlier indiscretion, instead try to help them overcome their past. We all need help sometime in our life.”
It isn’t possible to list all the Londons’ accomplishments or contributions to the community, but their impact has been felt in many ways. We wish them well on their service in Finland and look forward to their return.