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In Memory

Lewis Munk

Lewis Edward Munk Jr., 98, passed away at his home in Montpelier on Monday, Nov. 28, 2005. Lewis was born Sept. 29, 1907, in Bennington, Idaho, to Lewis Edgar and Frances Wright Munk. He attended local schools and graduated from Montpelier High School in 1925. In 1929, he graduated from Brigham Young University, where he was a sports reporter for the Associated Press and lettered several years as a member of the university’s tennis team. For the next five years he taught English and was the first football coach at Snowflake, Arizona High School.

In the mid-1930s, Lewis returned to Bear Lake County, where, except for one year, he taught a variety of subjects at Georgetown High School and Grade School and Montpelier and Bear Lake High Schools until his retirement in 1970. He was particularly known for his English classes and the encouragement he gave his students to pursue higher education.

During his teaching years and for a decade or so thereafter he farmed, mainly in the Georgetown area. There, he pioneered the growing of strawberries and raspberries. He harvested his last crop of berries and corn in the fall of his passing.

As a young man Lewis was a pitcher and catcher for a number of baseball teams in the Bear Lake area. He was also an avid fisherman and bowler. At age 83, he took up golf, with great enthusiasm. His last golf outing took place on his 98th birthday.

Lewis was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He served in a number of callings, including member of the Montpelier stake presidency, stake Sunday school president and gospel doctrine teacher in the Montpelier First Ward.

Lewis was also active in a number of civic endeavors. He was a member of the board that made arrangements for the first town water system in Georgetown, a member of the hospital board at the time the Bear Lake Memorial Hospital was built, and the representative from Bear Lake County for the 1951 session of the Idaho state House of Representatives.

Lewis married Vea Higginson of Hatch, Idaho, in 1938, in the Salt Lake City LDS Temple. She preceded him in death in 1998. He is survived by his sister, Lillian McDonald, of Spanish Fork, Utah; sons, Russell (Debra), of Kensington, Maryland, and Dale (JoAnn), of Mapleton, Utah; daughters, Janel, (Sharon) Dayton of Cokeville, Wyo., Marian (Richard) Yeoman of Dayton, Nev., and Kristin (Bruce) Williams of Salisbury, Md.; 27 grandchildren and 36 great-grandchildren.

Funeral services were held Dec. 3, 2005 in the Montpelier First and Fourth Wards Chapel. Interment was in the Montpelier Cemetery.

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02/24/14 12:43 PM #1    

Larry Grimes (1958)

When I entered the University of Idaho and attended my first college English course, it became apparent that I had seen the material before.  I mentioned that to the professor who then said, "You must be from Montpelier and Lew Munk was your teacher." At the time I didn't really understand that comment.  Later it became apparent that Mr. Munk taught an AP course in Montpelier to his seniors before we ever heard of AP courses.  Because of this, English was never really a problem for me in college. Having made my living in the law I can appreciate the English education I received from MHS and Mr. Munk and his colleagues. 

02/25/14 09:39 AM #2    

Roger Wilcox (1961)

After returning from our missions in 1965, Ken Wilkes and I went to play tennis at the city park.   When we arrived we were amazed at the sight of Lewis Munk playing tennis with his son, Dale, who was at the time an outstanding high school athlete.   Dale was rushing back and forth across the court as Lewis was standing in the center of the court driving balls from one side of the court to the other.  I came to understand that he had played on the BYU tennis team.

Roger Wilcox MHS 1961

02/25/14 04:09 PM #3    

Gordon Bradley (1963)

I started attending USU in 1966.  In my first Freshman English class, the teacher made the comment, "Look around, half of you will not be around next year, because I will flunk you out."   I thought, this this must be a very hard class.  As it turned out, I had no problems with Freshman English.  To this day, I thank Mr Munk!  He was a great teacher, and person.  When I would talk to him, he would always say, "when you go to college, or where are you going to college."  He left not doubt that I was going to college.     Montpelier was so fortunate to have such a wonderful teacher.                                                               



03/27/14 11:00 AM #4    

K B Rasmussen (1950)

It seems I've been teaching all of my life - first at the University of Utah, later as a gospel doctrine teacher, as a bishop, as a stake president and, especially as a mission president. When I taught at the University of Utah - expository writing, English as a second language, introduction to literature, etc. it was as if Lewis Munk was right there with me. I don't know of any teacher who had so much of a dramatic influence on the lives of his or her students.

I think that we all took something very special away from his classes. In a number of years of higher education and two decades of experience with a New York City based publisher, I never found another teacher or a writer to compare. Those of us who came to know him and to love him have been very blessed.


07/17/14 08:22 PM #5    

Dorothy Grimes (Allsop) (1951)

Mr. Munk was a master teacher.  I always thought he was the best teacher I ever had in high school or college.  He made literature exciting and interesting.  We knew we had to speak well if we wanted to succeed in life.  When my husband and I were called on a mission to Mongolia to teach English, I wrote him a letter before we left and thanked him for his influence in my life and was pleasantly surprised when he responded.  I also remember picking raspberries and strawberries on his farm out in Georgetown.  Those were happy days.  My lunch probably cost more money than I made, but he taught us to work hard and he was so patient and kind.  Dorothy Grimes Allsop class of 1951

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