Stake Memories

The experiences we have all shared are sacred and to record them allows us to remember with gratitude the miracles of God in our lives. 

Submit a Salem Stake Memory


Behold a Royal Army
Janice Kent : April 16, 2020

As Ward Historian for the past 15 plus years, I have never added any of my own comments to the ward history. Because of the spiritual experience I had during the trial of the fires and mandatory evacuation, I feel I would be remiss if I did not share my personal story. We have lived in Woodland Hills twenty-five years this next February. We raised our three children here. I tend grandchildren most days of the week and have been doing this for Read More...


Living in a Miracle
Kelsie Larsen : September 30, 2019

It has been over a year since we were evacuated for the fire and I have been blessed to have a constant reminder of the miracles we have experienced and continue to experience. I live right above the park, on the front lines as I sometimes think of it. My house is surrounded with barricades and hundreds of sandbags. When we walk out our front door we are faced with a field that has been dug up to catch as much mud as possible for potential mud Read More...


My Fire Testimony
Margareth Jolley : February 7, 2019

The day of the evacuation we were very busy packing. We had time to pack the most important things, but we had not the time to pack/take our animals: 8 goats, 10 chickens, 3 ducks, and 2 turkeys. We were leaving them behind. For our most surprise, just before we're leaving, my son-in-law comes with a covered trailer and cages and with 3 of his friends. Quickly they got our animals.My daughter had already found places to foster our animals and Read More...


My Fire Testimony
Becky Warner : February 7, 2019

As I frantically searched my home to gather those necessities and items of treasured value (that could not be replaced,) my anxiety and stress were immense. As we drove down the mountain we both were afraid of the loss of our home and business. Each day, as the evacuation continued, we prayed and worried. We talked about what we would do, how we would move forward if all was gone. Slowly my heart changed to recognize this was all in the Lord's Read More...


We were blessed
Robin Ballew : February 7, 2019

Our elderly neighbor had her son visiting, so he was able to help her. We are the district leaders. This freed us up to gather our irreplaceable items and pets. My husband's daughter offered to let us stay with her, so this allowed us valuable time with grandkids we don't see very often. Mt. Loafer Ward Read More...


My Fire Testimony
Glenda K. Egbert : February 7, 2019

I have a two-page type-written testimony of the fire and its effects. The Lord blessed us. As President Clare said at our special stake conference, I truly did leave my home and possessions with the Lord and knew that whatever happened, He would make it right. Faith in God, prayer, following our leaders. Thank you to all. Mt. Loafer Ward Read More...


We Were Blessed
Jeane Beese : February 7, 2019

I have learned to say, "We were blessed, not we were lucky." We feel it's so important to acknowledge and praise our god for keeping us and our homes safe. Read More...


In the Midst of Our Trials
Craig Moyer : February 4, 2019

The Bald Mountain fire affected our Woodland Hills community in ways we never imagined. My recollections come both as a member of the community and as a firefighter with Woodland Hills. A wild land fire is something we train for, but that training is something I never thought I’d have to use. Until this. Throughout the fire I continually saw the hand of the Lord in watching over us - my family was offered a place to stay in Salem in the home Read More...


Home, a Refuge From the Storm
Joan S. Moyer : February 4, 2019

When we were evacuated from our home it was a challenge for me. When my family knelt down to pray together to help us know what we needed to do, I received a witness that all would be well. I had a hard time leaving my "refuge from the storms of life" (my home), and didn’t want to leave if things were going to be okay. People were very generous to our family, but I had a hard time sleeping at night. I wasn’t in my home. After several days we Read More...


Little things aren't so little
Debbie or Mark Bracken : January 28, 2019

Our evacuation story is not unusual, but supports the experiences expressed by our friends and neighbors. We want our Salem family to know we are grateful for the hand of the Lord, which blesses us daily. The first miracles were apparent as soon as the notice came advising we were possibly being evacuated. First Miracle: Mark was home during the day. That rarely happens. He was able to communicate with me (a modern miracle) so we coul Read More...


The miracle of fires and faith
Diana Ballard : December 30, 2018

I have a younger brother, William, who with his wife, lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. He has no faith in any God, and believes that anyone who does believe in God is weak and is manufacturing a God for a crutch. During late September, 2018, about 3 days after the Woodland Hills Residents were allowed to go back to their homes after their evacuation, I was still in awe because of the many miracles I had both seen and heard of. I saw the Read More...


Gratitude to God
Nancy Ercanbrack : December 19, 2018

We feel incredible gratitude that the area affected by the fires of 2018 did not take the lives of our precious friends and neighbors. Our homes were spared and the beauty of Woodland HIlls is appreciated even more from day to day. We will never take clean air for granted. We are so grateful for those who aided in any way to make our lives, our animals and our homes more safe. We express to God our gratitude that we have our home in Woodland Hill Read More...


Blessings
Gary and Val Hansen : December 11, 2018

A few weeks ago, a raging wild fire burned in the hills above us. As it gained intensity, smoke filled the air and infiltrated our homes. When it became a threat to Salem and the nearby communities, residents were placed on alert. We received a text from our District Leader informing us of the “pre-evacuation” notice due to the fire. The message came from the stake to the ward and then to individuals. Immediately, there were responses from Read More...


Skousen Family Fire Miracles
Grant and Keri Skousen : December 10, 2018

Our miracle story is two-fold. Past History #1 – In 1988, Grant discovered Woodland Hills via a church off-site leadership meeting. We went for a drive that week – drove all around (just the old section – the rest was still undeveloped) and ever since, it has been our undying dream to live here. Ten years later we were able to buy a building lot. For various reasons, we did not build a home until THIS YEAR. But all their lives, our child Read More...


Fasting in Pittsburgh on 9/16
Mike Wilson : December 2, 2018

I had to travel from Salem to Pittsburgh, PA for work during the time when the area fires were causing extreme concern. I was grateful that a special fast was being held on Sunday, Sept. 16th and even though I was far away from the fires I could lend my faith to appeal to God for help to protect homes and property that was in such imminent danger. While attending a conference and trying to honor the Savior on his day, I fasted and I prayed m Read More...


Mount Loafer Splendor
Andrea Kirk : November 21, 2018

I’m an artist within the stake. Last December, I took a beautiful photo of Mount Loafer that I immediately painted. Little did I know that several months later, the mountain range would be engulfed in flames. For the Thanksgiving holiday, I made a time lapse painting video tribute to the firefighters who saved our precious Mount Loafer, all of the homes resting below the fires, and the surrounding communities. They risked their safety and liv Read More...


Postcard from heaven
Karen Anderson : November 19, 2018

On Thursday, August 17th, the hills south of Woodland Hills erupted in fire. Early afternoon there was a pre-evacuation notice put out for everyone south of the Highline Canal, which is only ½ a mile away from us. By late afternoon, all residents of Woodland Hills and Elk Ridge were evacuated from their homes. As Relief Society president of the Salem 7th Ward, I was on my phone constantly, for the next week, relaying messages from President Clar Read More...


Bald Mountain Fire
Chris Helvey : November 18, 2018

As a member of the Woodland Hills Fire Department we, as well as many other departments from the valley, barely slept. From Wednesday night (Sept 12)- Saturday morning (Sept 15), approx. 2 hours of sleep. The miracle of sustainment from our Lord is real! Thursday night to Friday morning (September 13-14) myself and those around me did know how Woodland Hills and Elk Ridge would survive the massive wall of flames racing towards both cities (down Read More...


Bald Mountain Fire
Chris Helvey : November 18, 2018

As a member of the Woodland Hills Fire Department my heart sank when the dispatchers came across our radio and told us that Woodland Hills, Elk Ridge, and possibly parts of Salem and Spanish Fork were being evacuated, due to the Bald Mountain Fire. Our fire department, along with many in Utah County, were over on Highway 89 fighting the Pole Creek Fire from destroying homes on the other side of our mountain. Thoughts ran through my mind, "This Read More...


Taking part in the prayers
anonymous : October 29, 2018

As my family and I joined with everyone in many prayers we could feel the power and importance of those prayers. The direction we were given to pray at specific times with everyone else was unifying and helped our family so much. The laser focus of those prayers and intensity of feeling inspired humility, gratitude, submission and also faith. We are so grateful for leaders who directed this. In one particular instance as I was driving alone t Read More...


A Zion Firey Test
Kathy Pitochelli : October 29, 2018

I will back track a little to set a trail of events the Lord has been leading us in what feels like a Lehi journey. Ten years ago, the Spirit whispered "Get prepared!!!". Since my Patriarchal Blessing stated I would see and know the Last Days events and interpret them correctly, I was on high alert. (My remarks are not intended as direction for others, just my family). Prepare how, and for what I thought? We had already followed the Church Read More...


Charred Pine Bough is a Symbol
Michael C. Raymond : October 29, 2018

We were stunned by the announcement of a "mandatory evacuation" and weren't as prepared to go as we should, but nevertheless we packed some essentials and drove to stay with our son in Sandy, Utah. He was very kind and accommodating, but it was still difficult. We earnestly pleaded with the Lord in every prayer starting that Thursday night for His mercy and protection. As news of the miracles came to our attention we understood without Read More...


The Power of Prayers
Lana : October 28, 2018

I’ve always believed in the power of prayers and strength in numbers. It was pretty cool to see the strength in power of prayers once again through the experience of the fire. The fact that the fire was so big, so out of control and our community in such a wooded area, there’s no explanation, other than the hand of God, as to why our homes were not burned. I was told that the fire chief looked at Woodland Hills and said “We can not save tha Read More...


My Fire Story
Marina Spence : October 27, 2018

Fire Evacuation, Thursday, September 13th: With smoke building behind our mountain all week I was awakened at 4:00am with the distinct impression, Pack the car! I had prepared lists for an emergency evacuation some years ago, so I shared my thoughts with Charky when he awakened and invited him to help get things ready: take pictures throughout our house for insurance purposes, and other things so I could focus on the ward needs.. Then I went t Read More...


A Fleece for Us
Annette Moulton : October 26, 2018

I think this only makes sense in my mind but I kept thinking of the story of Gideon in the Old Testament during our recent fire/flood situation. Talk about a situation of opposite or contrasting needs: first the need for rain and then the need for no rain. I love this story. The Israelites, who had not been obedient, were in bondage to the Midianites. After they finally humbled themselves and prayed to God, the Lord sent a prophet who reminded t Read More...


Fisher Family Wedding, Reunion and Fire
Claudia Fisher : October 24, 2018

Fisher Family Wedding, Reunion and Fire Evacuation September 13, 2018 During the month of August as I read comments on Facebook, I was surprised so many people were commenting on the Coal Hollow fire advancing from Thistle in Spanish Fork Canyon towards Spanish Fork. Being the optimist that I am, I totally discounted the fact that the fire could ever reach the valley. I did notice, however an unusual amount of deer in our city which was spe Read More...


My memories
Sheryl Thompson : October 21, 2018

I remember little Rosie standing on the sofa watching the terrible lightning storm that started the fires. She loves fireworks and natures fireworks. She calls them 'boom boom' s. I had never before seen so much lightning in the sky in such a short time. It really did not surprise me later when I was riding south on I-15 with my husband and I first saw one column of smoke and then two. It didn't take long after that for Pole Creek and Bald Mounta Read More...


Home!
Becky Poulter : October 19, 2018

When the evacuation was lifted on Saturday, September 22nd, I returned to our home to join my husband Zac and daughter Normandy after finishing things up at the Evacuation Donation Warehouse. Oh home! I love my home! I was ready to leave everything behind, but sooooooo grateful to be given another chance. I awoke later that night with thoughts running through my head about home: What is a home? My mother-in-law was also evacuated and it wa Read More...


Generous Community
Angela Rogers : October 15, 2018

One of the memories I have of the response to the evacuation due to the Pole Creek fire was how generous everyone was. When there was a call for donations, they poured in. When a need for paper plates was requested, they got 100 times more than they needed. I loved how much everyone wanted to help each other. We are taught to be prepared and self-reliant, and it is hard for people to accept help, but we sure wanted to help in any way we could Read More...