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LDS church says goodbye to Elder Robert D. Hales

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(KUTV) Thousands of Latter-day Saints said good-bye to one of their top church leaders – Elder Robert D. Hales of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

Hales, who was 85-years-old, passed away on Sunday Afternoon just minutes after the morning session of the LDS Church’s General Conference.

The funeral services took place in the Tabernacle on Temple Square on Friday morning.

"I will miss my dear friend Robert D. Hales,” Elder M. Russell Ballard who has served with Hales for more than 40 years said. “He has always been a hero to me. His skills of working with people and giving them leadership opportunities in the best way were outstanding."

President Henry B. Eyring has known Elder Hales for 70 years.

“He was tireless in his ministry. He was loyal to his family and friends to the Lord, and to the Lords prophet.” Eyring said.

Elder Hales was born in New York City and graduated from The University of Utah and Harvard before serving in the Air Force as a fighter piolt.

Hales became a very successful business executive for several companies. “He was a legend in the business world,” said Eyring.

In 1975, at 42-years-old, the call came from church headquarters.

"He was asked to leave his career and serve in the Lord’s church,” said Eyring.

In 1994 at age 61 he was called as an apostle, where he would serve for 23 years before his death.

“Elder hales was a valiant member of the quorum of the 12 apostles,” said Pres. Russel M. Nelson. “He has passed the test of mortality and returned home with highest honors"

Elder hales leaves behind his wife, Mary Elene Crandall Hales, and two sons. Unfortunately, he's suffered from health issues since a heart attack in 1991.

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