Onward, Saint Luke!

On January 17, 2014, UVU Review, The Independent Student Voice, ran an article of testimonials about David’s impact from UVU students, faculty and staff.

freakin Deac

I absolutely love the following passage:

Thirteen years ago as an undergraduate student I approached David (more or less out of the blue) and, after explaining my thin set of qualifications, asked if I could be his research assistant. It was an absurd gamble, and I had little hope of a positive response from him. David looked at me, and in his great booming voice said, “YES, LUKE, THAT WOULD BE EXCELLENT!” He continued to take unwise chances with me, letting me organize symposia, conferences, and an entire lecture series on behalf of the Ethics Center. When I decided to pursue an LDS mission, David sent me off with his secular blessing. One of my most vivid mission memories is of sitting on a hill overlooking Florence, and unwrapping a long parcel from David. Inside I found a hideous Jerry Garcia tie, and an attached yellow sticky note that read: ‘ONWARD, SAINT LUKE!’

The tie (and sticky note) are among my most prized possessions.

For a dozen years David took chances on me for no good reason other than his unflinching faith in the boundless potential of his students. I owe David more than I can say for giving me the high wire, the pole, and for taking away the net. Now, I can only hope to repay him by emulating that same unwavering faith in the students who approach me with short resumes and grand ambitions to change the world.

Luke Peterson
Director, Corporate & Community Partnerships
Utah Valley University

Luke’s story illustrates is how receptive DK was to people with different beliefs. I feel like we live in self-imposed camps now: Liberal/Conservative; Christian/Atheist; White/Black; Urban/Rural. Let’s be more like DK, and cross whatever chasm divides us from others.

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