President Gordon B. Hinckley had an amazing sense of history and an awareness of significant events. He would not miss the opportunity to be in Sharon, Vermont for the 200th Anniversary of Joseph Smith’s birth.
Here President Hinckley poses with his son, Clark, right by the granite obelisk that was placed there 100 years before.
Elder M. Russell Ballard, a great-great grandson of Hyrum Smith, accompanied President Hinckley for this wonderful occasion.
President Hinckley loved the Prophet Joseph.
I stood beside the Prophet when he looked back at the monument in Sharon, Vermont and before I could get my camera up, he took his hat off and nodded as if to honor the Prophet Joseph.
President Hinckley loved being here for this once-in-a-century event.
He enjoyed doing a Church-wide broadcast standing beside the hearthstone that had been in the cabin where the Prophet Joseph was born.
I loved taking pictures of President Hinckley’s hands. They were worn and gentle and grandfatherly.
President Hinckley was in his element at the dedication of the Nauvoo Temple. I think this was one of his favorite days of his whole life.
President Hinckley described the Nauvoo and the Salt Lake Temple as great bookends for the continent with the angel Moroni statues facing each other.
The President said he never got good at putting mortar (or mud, as he called it) in the coverstones of temples. We thought he got really good after dedicating more than 90 of them.
President Hinckley loved meeting with people, even with the press. He was comfortable in any public setting.
President Hinckley spoke at the gravessides of Joseph and Emma and Hyrum in Nauvoo.
One of the things he told us the day he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom was that he wished Marjorie could have been there. “She would have enjoyed this occasion,” he said wistfully.
President Hinckley said that adulation was poison and he avoided it at all costs. He did seem pleased, however, to receive on his 94th birthday, the nation’s highest honor given to her citizens.
His smile was infectious.
He always put the press at ease and talked with them as he would to his friends.
He drew a great contrast between the visit the Prophet Joseph Smith made to President Van Buren and this visit this day. “Much has changed,” he said. Then he said, “We haven’t begun to scratch the surface of the great work before us.”
President Hinckley loved to interact with the Saints wherever he went–like here in Accra, Ghana.
He loved children and would recognize and honor them wherever he traveled.
We were there when he became the first President of the Church to step foot in Russia. He didn’t really like to travel, but he loved to be with the Saints.
Here he was interacting with the Saints in Moscow. He loved the Saints everywhere.
He invited his precious wife, Marjorie, up to the stand in Moscow and then said to the Russian Saints, “This is my babushka!” It brought the house down and endeared them both to these dear Saints.
He started the Youth Celebrations first in Ghana (to herald the dedications of temples). Here, in Sacramento, he greeted the thousands of waiting youth with his cane and a big smile.
In Finland he honored the Finnish flag and talked about Fiskars scissors (that we all use) and licorice which the Finnish Saints love!
This image I took of Sister Hinckley has become iconic. What a beautiful woman she was and a dearly loved wife and companion to President Hinckley.
I took this iconic image of President Hinckley just a few minutes before the one of Sister Hinckley. What a dear, dear couple.