An Idaho statesman has passed away. Mark Ricks passed away Thursday, September 29 in Rexburg. He was Lt. Governor of Idaho ten years ago. He also served in the legislature from 1979 to 1994, several of those years as majority leader.
Ricks is perhaps best remembered in this area as the man who, as the LDS stake president, headed up Rexburg relief efforts after the Teton dam flood of 1976.
He used a program already in place where every family in the Mormon Church is assigned a pair of home teachers from their congregation to look after their needs, and report back to church leaders.
When federal disaster officials came after the flood, they found relief efforts already in good hands.
“When I went down to their meeting I said, ‘Now, we have the means to contact people individually, and if you work through us we’ll help you reach people’, and so they did. After that federal disaster agent had been here a few days he came to me and said, ‘You don’t need me anymore. You folks are running this operation and I’m just in your way.’ “
40 years after the flood, Ricks reflected on the event. “To have that happening right here in this little town of Rexburg was really something. I’ve never forgotten it.”
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 8, at the Rexburg 19th ward LDS chapel. Visitation will be held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday and from 9:30 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. Saturday, at the church.