ElRay Bridges was born to Octave Lynn and Melba LaRue Green Bridges on Sept. 23, 1939, in Murray, Utah. He was the first of three children and was raised with many aunts, uncles and cousins.
During his years at Riverton Jr. High School, he met the love of his life, Ann Butterfield. They graduated from Jordan High School in the spring of 1957 and married in September.
ElRay worked hard his whole life, but the work he loved the most was farming and working with animals. He raised ornamental pheasants for many years and always had birds and animals to care for.
The greatest joy of his life was the family he and Ann created together. He loved babies and couldn’t wait to hold them. He loved to tease his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. However, he taught his family to work together and look with satisfaction on a job well done.
With a strong testimony of Jesus Christ and his love for his fellow man, he served in many capacities in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He dedicated nine years of service to the Billings, Montana, temple each and every Saturday.
He appreciated his pioneer ancestry and strived to be a worthy son of such a heritage.
ElRay never met a stranger and loved to visit with people. He loved the outdoors, camping and hunting, with family and friends. He was a wonderful welder and machinist and loved to fix things, old and new. He had a passion for antiques.
He was taken quickly on March 22, 2019, after being diagnosed with cancer only two weeks prior. He is survived by his wife, Ann, of 61 years; his children, Sherie (Dave) Monk, William (Jody) Bridges, DeAnna (Mike) Calvin, LaRae (Kurt) Dobbs, Joe Bridges (Jennifer); and his brother Sheldon (Bonnie) Bridges. He leaves a posterity of 23 grandchildren and 40 great-grandchildren and one great-great grandchild.
He was preceded in death by his mother Melba, father Octave, sister Lynette Brinkerhoff and great-grandson Tobias Houchin.
Services were held on Wednesday, March 27, 2019 in Cowley, Wyoming.