By RACHEL DAHNEKE
Elder Jared Mont Pulham was a BYU student that never got a chance to go to class.
He deferred enrollment to go on a mission, and his plans to return to BYU ended when he and three other missionaries died in a car crash in Iowa on Jan. 28.
Pulham, who grew up in Alpine, struggled with dyslexia and worked hard to get into BYU, said his father, Brian Pulham, autobody technician and shop foreman at the BYU Physical Plant.
“He thought he didn’t have a chance with his learning disability, but with hard work, faith and prayers he got in,” his father said.
This disability was frustrating for Pulham, said his Bishop, Gary Wilder.
But he didn’t give up or have self-pity.
“Rather than walking away and feeling bad for himself, he focused and quietly stepped up. He wasn’t a braggart, just was a doer,” said MaryLynn Cowley, assistant in the Career Counseling Center at Lone Peak High School.
Pulham’s persistent attitude was carried into the mission field.
When he made up his mind to go on a mission, he put all effort into that, his father said.
“He knew where he was going and what it was going to take to get there. Of all his buddies, he was the one who went on a mission. That was never a question,” Cowley said.
A week before his death, Pulham talked with his father about the birth of his new baby brother.
“We’re doing really well. We have the spirit of Heavenly Father holding us up and support of friends,” his father said.
Pulham graduated from Lone Peak High School. He was a member of the American Fork Swim Team, the chess team, a cappella choir, and was an honor student.
He would hang out with his friends, work on old cars with his brother and father, and on the weekends go on dates.
Pulham spread confidence and believed in other people, Cowley said.
“His brother, Nate, was really struggling to graduate. I talked to Jared about [Nate] and asked if he was worried. He said, ‘You know, he’ll get it done, he’ll step up to it and get it done,'” Cowley said.
“Things changed just because he was there. He was real soft spoke, but had a mighty presence. He was a power for good,” Cowley said.
See related stories and video:
Funeral services held for first of four missionaries 2/3/2000
Funeral services announced for missionaries 2/1/2000
Missionaries die in Iowa car accident 1/31/2000