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The final chapter of the storied life of Rex D. Jacobsen, 70, from Vernal, Utah, was written on Sun., April 8, 2018, when he passed away peacefully surrounded by the love of his life, his wife Billie, and family in Grand Junction, Colorado.
While the ending of the story is sad, the many chapters in the Life of Rex D. Jacobsen were filled with a zeal for living, golf, humor, telling stories (some of which may have included tidbits of truth), his family and his friends.
Rex’s story began on Sept. 11, 1947, when he was born to Dell and Wanda Jacobsen. Rex has an older brother, Doug (Nedene) Jacobsen. Rex loved to tell people that once Doug shot him with an arrow in the chest during target practice and that his mother chained him to the front porch because he tried to run away. Rex claimed Wanda said, “If you are going to run away like a dog, I am going to treat you like one. Somewhere in those stories, there might be the truth, but the reality is Rex loved and took care of his parents until the day they died. And, though there might have been a scar to back up his “arrow in the chest” story, through the scars of childhood, he and Doug remained very close.
Rex grew up in Vernal and graduated from Uintah High School in 1965. He honorably served his country in the U.S. Navy for four·years during the Vietnam War. He attended Salt Lake Community College and then went on to work for the Forest Service, Questar and the Flaming Gorge Dam (He often said, “I have the best dam job.”). Rex was a long time committee member of the Dinosaur Roundup Rodeo and served as their President in 2000.
If you wanted to find Rex in Vernal, you’d have been wise to check the golf course or the 7·11 Cafe. There were very few Friday nights that Rex was not at the 7·11 for a very rare prime rib dinner. At the Cafe, he and his friends “solved all of the world’s problems. And, when they agreed with each other, they said, “Ditto. Some friends would give you the shirt off their back, in this group, Rex found a brotherhood that offered up a kidney when Rex was going through dialysis.
To know Rex was to love Rex. Never was there a time he didn’t run into someone he knew. Even when he wasn’t feeling well, he would take time to make sure others around him did. Whether it was a visit with an old friend or donuts to the girls at the Pharmacy at Smiths, it was just his nature to think of others. His heart was bigger than he let on. Rex loved Vernal and we’re quite certain if Vernal could talk, our city would say, “Ditto."
He married the love of his life, Billie, February 1985. They have six children: Christina Minnick, Eric (Kate) Jones, Rachelle Sorensen, Josh D. (Jessica) Jacobsen, Danielle (Bryon) Bowden, DeAnn Jacobsen. They have 10 amazing grandchildren: Ethan, Aaron, Dixie-Lynn, Zac, Rylee, Paige. Karlin, Agnys, Soren, and Asher.
We all love and will miss him. In lieu of flowers, please, donate to your local VFW in his honor.
A celebration of life will be Saturday, June 30, 2018 from 11:00-1:00 PM at the Uintah Conference Center. Interment will be in the Vernal Memorial Park with Military honors provided by the American Legion Post 11. Online condolences may be shared at www.AshleyValleyFuneralHome.com.