Dudley John “DJ” Rowley
July 28, 1933 ~ March 13, 2021
Dudley John “DJ” Rowley, age 87, beloved husband, father, and grandfather, passed away on March 13, 2021 in his home surrounded by his loved ones.
Dudley was the third of four children, born July 28, 1933 in Blanding, UT to Vernon Conrad and Charity Leavitt Rowley. He was married to his sweetheart, Lily Helquist, on May 5, 1966 in Reno, NV. They were sealed for time and all eternity in the Saint George Temple on February 21, 1970.
He grew up in Blanding where he could roam free in the hills and mountains, developing a lifelong love of the outdoors. DJ started driving logging trucks from state to state for his father’s lumber company at the age of 14. He later hauled uranium ore, taking over the family trucking business while overseeing its expansion throughout the western states. This eventually led him to teaching professional truck driving at Utah Technical College and—as the college grew to a university—transitioning to the General Education Department where he was a respected instructor of Health, First Aid, and many Phys Ed courses.
Excelling in sports from a young age, DJ graduated from San Juan High School and later attended Dixie College. After transferring to Brigham Young University, he graduated with his bachelor’s degree in Health and Physical Education.
With many others at the time, DJ was drafted into the Army Reserve prior to the Korean War where he proudly served our country, earning the rank of E-5, Specialist Second Class. Never being called up to the Korean war theater, Dudley jokingly referred to himself as a “Jockstrap Soldier” because his greatest contribution during the war was winning the golden gloves in boxing and playing other sports within his unit. He was honorably discharged from military service in 1956.
Dudley loved hunting, fishing, camping, boating, water skiing, and riding motorcycles and ATVs. Indeed, he was never happier than when he was enjoying the outdoors with his family and friends. We probably all have very fond memories of DJ in the outdoors, at the lake, or around the campfire, probably doing something outrageous and fun – encouraging all to join in!
As an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, DJ served faithfully in various callings throughout his life. He and Lily served two seasons as LDS Service Missionaries at the Heber Valley Camp and one year at the LDS Employment Center.
DJ is survived by his wife, Lily, and children – Andrea Rogers, Reagan Shiew, Nicole (Robert) Matthews, Marla (Troy) Olson, Corbin (Jennifer) Rowley, Brandon Kyle Rowley, and Jana (Joey) Echevarria – 22 grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren and counting!
Dudley is preceded in death by his parents, Vernon Conrad and Charity Leavitt Rowley; his brother, Vernon Conrad Rowley, Jr.; and sisters, Janice Rowley Hulet and Marilyn Rowley.
Dudley fought valiantly against Lewy Body Dementia. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Lewy Body Dementia Association at https://www.lbda.org/honor-memorial-gifts/.
Funeral services will be held on Friday, March 19, 2021 at 11 a.m., with a gathering beginning at 10 a.m. at the Wing Mortuary, 118 East Main, Lehi, UT. At his request, DJ’s body has been donated to the University of Utah for the advancement of medical science. https://medicine.utah.edu/neurobiology-anatomy/body-donor-program/
Online guest book at wingmortuary.com
Card of thanks
The family would like to thank dear friends and neighbors who have offered their gracious love and support. A special thanks goes to the medical specialists at the University of Utah and the compassionate hospice personnel who cared for DJ in his final days.