Surrounded by his loving family, Noel Hanks Olsen, age 80, bravely crossed the finish line of his mortal marathon on November 2, 2022, into the loving arms of his Savior and parents. Noel was born on May 23, 1942, in Salt Lake City, to LeGrand and Beulah Hanks Olsen. He was predeceased by his parents, brothers Dave and Stan, brother-in-law Willie Cowden, and cousin Steve Sorenson.
Noel is survived by his beloved wife Mary, six children, 19 grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. Children: Sharon (Kasi) Unufe, Nancy (Mike) Moore, Barbara (Peni) Tagoai, LeGrand, Pam (Bryan) Beach, and Katie (Van) Hoover. Grandchildren: Uini, Noel (Carlie), and Siale Unufe; John Michael (Samantha), Zoe, Grace, and Lucy Moore; Uso, Ezra, Eva, and Isaiah Tagoai; Milli, Liam, Greta, Phoebe, Hazel, and Aggi Beach; and Theo and Ruby Hoover. Great-grandchild: Calvin Moore. He is also survived by his brothers Richard and Barry (Carla) Olsen, sister Rebecca O. Cowden, sisters-in-law Kathie and Pat Olsen, many nieces and nephews, cousins Claudia S. (Bruce) Nielson and Corinne Sorenson, and many other cousins.
Noel grew up on Capitol Hill in Salt Lake, attended West High and Mesa Junior College, served in the East Central States Mission, and worked for 40 years in the U.S. Army Special Forces at Camp Williams, Utah. He enjoyed many varied adventures in his life, including hundreds of parachute jumps in connection with Special Forces; biathlon (cross country skiing and rifle shooting) in Utah, Italy, Slovenia, Vermont, and Lake Placid, N.Y.; assisting with the biathlon events at the 2002 Winter Olympics at Soldier Hollow; longtime competitive runner and triathlete, including many wins at the Huntsman World Senior Games; certified swimming instructor in Utah and Hawaii; hiking and camping with his family; serving in the bishopric; serving for many years with the Young Men, hiking and camping; serving with his wife Mary in the special needs branch; expert photographer, with his own darkroom; and expert in construction remodeling.
We will miss our wonderful husband, dad, grandpa, brother, uncle, and friend and his zest for adventure and excellence. Our heartfelt thanks to CNS Hospice, the sweet and caring staff at Ashford Assisted Living, and many family members who helped care for Noel in the final leg of his race, as he now moves on to greater adventures.
Viewings will be Monday, November 14, 6:00-8:00 p.m., at the Midvale 8th Ward, 8350 So. Jackson St., and Tuesday, November 15, 10:00-10:45 a.m., at the ward prior to the 11:00 a.m. funeral service. Sign language interpretation will be provided. Interment will be at the Midvale City Cemetery under the direction of Goff Mortuary. In lieu of flowers you are invited to donate to a charity of your choice.
The funeral service will be livestreamed at: