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Stephen Richards Covey, "Papa"

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Memories & Candles

“Thank you. ”
1 of 100+ | Posted by: Alberto - México - Student

“It was an honour for me to translate S.R. Covey's Seven Habits, a book with a lot of "bon sens près de chez vous". Reading and translating it...Read More »
2 of 100+ | Posted by: Magali Guenette

“The principles I was able to recognise through Dr Covey's guidance remain unchanged and provide a light to guide me. A gift from a gifted man. ...Read More »
3 of 100+ | Posted by: Nick Thompson - DC

“His 7 Habits book made a profound impact on my life. He will be missed by many. ”
4 of 100+ | Posted by: Karl Krayer - Dallas, TX - client

“I will always be inspired by the generous spirit and lifetime of thoughtful giving that Dr. Covey so eloquently lived. ”
5 of 100+ | Posted by: Phillip Randazzo - Dallas, TX

“Dear Family & Friends of Stephen R. Covey,I should like to express my deepest and heartfelt condolences. I will keep Stephen R. Covey and all his...Read More »
6 of 100+ | Posted by: Andrée Bayhurst - Boeblingen

Audio Memory: Click play to listen

7 of 100+ | Posted by: Andrée Bayhurst - Boeblingen

“Stephen Covey made a difference - not only in my life, but the lives of many friends, colleagues, and perhaps millions of others. That influence will...Read More »
8 of 100+ | Posted by: Michael J. Bement - Fernley, NV

“Hearing the sad news hit me like a ton of bricks. Stephen embodied everything he taught. When his sons stepped into the company I was even more...Read More »
9 of 100+ | Posted by: Robyn Gosney - toronto - employee

“We have lost a great human being - our belovd teacher. May his soul rest in peace. My heatfelt condolences to his fmaily and friends. Regards...Read More »
10 of 100+ | Posted by: Karthikeyan T - Bangalore - India, MA

“Dr. Covey, like countless other millions, you and your work have been one of the greatest inspirations to guide me in my personal mission here on...Read More »
11 of 100+ | Posted by: Darryl Clark - Olathe, KS

“In this way I want to express my respect and my gratitude to Dr. Covey, whose work is an important inspiration for me. Fortunately I was able to tell...Read More »
12 of 100+ | Posted by: Alexandra Schriefers

“It was a great honor to read youre work. ”
13 of 100+ | Posted by: Snezana

“You inspire me to be the best I can be even now. Thank you for being you. My thoughts and prayers are with your family. Xxx ”
14 of 100+ | Posted by: Donna Ambrose - United Kingdom

“I first read your Papa's books when they were initially published ... and over and over again ... and they changed my life. I went from being a...Read More »
15 of 100+ | Posted by: C M - Philadelphia, PA

“Seldom the Gospel has been taught the way Stephen does. I will hold his advice dear forever. Pini and I will keep you in our prayers. Jussi ”
16 of 100+ | Posted by: Jussi Kemppainen Pikkala, Finland

“The Covey Family Thank you for sharing your Dad's wisdom with me... He touched my life as a young adult through his book The 7 Habits, and became a...Read More »
17 of 100+ | Posted by: Alison Geduld - Follower

“A candle loses none of its light by lighting another candle...and Stephen has lighted many. His light shines brightly in all of his family and all...Read More »
18 of 100+ | Posted by: Kate Mahon - Halifax Nova Scotia

“Dr. Stephen Covey, There are many famous leaders in the world. But you are the one of a few powerful leaders. You lead by your heart and love for...Read More »
19 of 100+ | Posted by: Chang Hong Yu - Los Angeles, CA

“World has lost one of the greatest man who ever lived. I feel as if a member of my own family has passed away. Much of the happiness I experience in...Read More »
20 of 100+ | Posted by: Adam Pura - Warsaw, Poland

“May He Rest In Peace He who wanted us to help us find our Inner Voice and help other find theirs, while aiding us living a True and Meaningful Life...Read More »
21 of 100+ | Posted by: Ibrahime Camara

“Because of great men like Stephen I value time and experiences more than I did in my past. He was a light to this world. I will be forever grateful...Read More »
22 of 100+ | Posted by: Melissa Fancey - Mentee

“I never had the privelege of meeting Stephen, although I had hoped to one day. His work with The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People changed my...Read More »
23 of 100+ | Posted by: Bridget Zahradnik - MI

“I cannot put into words the impact Stephen had on my own happiness and success. I admire his personal discipline and dedication to his Mission and...Read More »
24 of 100+ | Posted by: David Palmer - Cwmbran, UK

“Dear Friends and Family of Stephen and to Stephen himself.Thank you for the wonderful teachings over a life which is an example to all, I feel...Read More »
25 of 100+ | Posted by: Justin Williams - London, UK

“I had the privilege of facilitating the Seven Habits course for many years for an organization in which I was employed, and I also had the pleasure...Read More »
26 of 100+ | Posted by: Katherine Maas

“Today I am receiving my new planner and I came across Mr. Covey's statement that "Integrity is Loyalty". Our state is struggling with a football...Read More »
27 of 100+ | Posted by: Frank Marshall - Camp Hill, PA

“I am reminded of the following "For Good" song lyrics from the Broadway musical "Wicked":"I've heard it saidThat people come into our lives for a...Read More »
28 of 100+ | Posted by: Debra Hawley - Downingtown, PA

“Thanks Stephen.I read your greatest book 20 years ago.It changed the way I think everyday. Still does today.You'll be always living in my mind, and...Read More »
29 of 100+ | Posted by: Raffaele Santopaolo Naples, ITALY

“I kind of met Mr. Covey on the day he passed. I was in a slump and looked over my bookcase and picked up the book "7 habits of highly effective...Read More »
30 of 100+ | Posted by: Juanita Scriven - Nassau, Bahamas, FL

“My Brother, With tears in my eyes, I don't know what to say. I will miss you, your insights, your calmness, and your ability to see into the hearts...Read More »
31 of 100+ | Posted by: Maurice Brown - Nashville, TN

“I was first introduced to Stephen Covey through his book, "Spiritual Roots of Human Relations". I lived by its every word and used it parallel with...Read More »
32 of 100+ | Posted by: Dr. John Nauss - Friend...

“I was out of town last week and missed everything. We lost a good man! It was my joy to know Stephen and the family for many years - all...Read More »
33 of 100+ | Posted by: Shirley Johnson - UT

“I was able to meet Bro.Covey when he was in London. He was an inspiration to me we spent most of the night talking with him and enjoyed being with...Read More »
34 of 100+ | Posted by: Brenda Kershaw Corder - Caldwell, ID

“Thank you for everything, sharing your wisdom , for your commitment for making this world a better place and contribution to education. My sympathy...Read More »
35 of 100+ | Posted by: Edson Williams - London - student

“As a tribute to Dr. Covey, I am humbly running for State Office with the slogan "Leadership is a choice, not a position." I adopted this motto...Read More »
36 of 100+ | Posted by: Jason Harris, MBA, PE, PMP - AZ

“Asked many times if we were related, not so, sorry for your loss. ”
37 of 100+ | Posted by: Jeannie Covey - roseville, MI

“July 23, 2012 Dear Sister Covey, The world has just lost a giant of a man, but we are much better for having had him here. My name is Judy Garner...Read More »
38 of 100+ | Posted by: Judy Garner Scott - UT

“I am sorry that he is gone. He made this world a better place by teaching numerous people how to better themselves. ”
39 of 100+ | Posted by: Promagirl

“Rest in Peace, You have touched many lives on this planet. "Papa" fits perfectly ... our were "Papa" to us all..those you touched with Your Deep....Read More »
40 of 100+ | Posted by: A B AL Mahmood - NY

“Dr. Covey was by far the most influential professor I had at BYU (MBA in the 1970s). His teachings and personal insights have had a lasting impact...Read More »
41 of 100+ | Posted by: G Kent Peterson - UT

“I am a 35 year old mother of 4 boys (plus a 5th on the way). But when I was a teenager, I had heard the name "Stephen Covey," and his famous title,...Read More »
42 of 100+ | Posted by: Angel Naivalu - Aspen, CO

“I am so inspired by many of his books even before I became a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He was a great and awesome...Read More »
43 of 100+ | Posted by: Cynitra Anderson - Pontiac, MI

“Eleven years ago, when I was a homeless street musician in Hawaii, a stranger made a lasting impression on my life. He gave me strength to pursue my...Read More »
44 of 100+ | Posted by: Elisabeth Hirsch - Salt Lake City, UT

“Here is a great man with a great legacy! Inspired and enlightened as few men can be. What a privilege and honor I had in receiving his influence and...Read More »
45 of 100+ | Posted by: Mauricio Araujo - São Paulo

“"And on that day when my strength is failing, The end draws near and my time has come, Still my soul will sing Your praise unending, Ten thousand...Read More »
46 of 100+ | Posted by: Jenni Williams - Dublin, OH

“Dear Stephen, The first time I met you, you took my hand and looked straight into my eyes. You smiled at me and said: "I'm Stephen". Your blue eyes...Read More »
47 of 100+ | Posted by: Christian Tyden - Madird

“What a Life Steven R, Covey lived !!!! an amazing story ...all the best to his family and friends at this difficult time . ”
48 of 100+ | Posted by: Doug Voice - winnipeg

“Deepest sympathy to the Covey family at the sad loss of Stephen. Stephen's legacy will be to inspire those who take on his teachings to live much...Read More »
49 of 100+ | Posted by: Pauline Maher - Dublin

“Our deepest sympathy to the Covey family and entire organization. Dr. Covey's teachings touched millions including me personally and our region of...Read More »
50 of 100+ | Posted by: George Swift - Lake Charles, LA

“Stephen Covey was a Giant. I can still remember the first time I heard him speak at the time I entered IBM for my first job as a junior engineer in...Read More »
51 of 100+ | Posted by: Ara Talaslian - Montreal

“thank you for what you taught me and through me many other people. ”
52 of 100+ | Posted by: dorine de jong - admirer

“Thank you for all the inspiration to live a good life - you have changed my life. Rest in heavenly peace, Dr. Covey. ”
53 of 100+ | Posted by: Patrik Slechta

“May the Lord welcome you at His presence. Goodbye, teacher ”
54 of 100+ | Posted by: Carlo Tuzi - Italy

“Although I never had the opportunity to meet Doctor Covey, I have followed Franklin Covey since I was a child. The utmost appreciation for his...Read More »
55 of 100+ | Posted by: Sarah Gordon - Minneapolis, MN

“Dr. Covey, I never had the honor of meeting you personally, and it was one of my long-term goals to one day be a part of your incredible...Read More »
56 of 100+ | Posted by: Tashina Schimming - Kansas City, MO

“My Deepest condolences to the family. Stephen surely inspired and there is a living memory in each one of us. ”
57 of 100+ | Posted by: Joseph A D'Souza - Karachi

“Thanks Mr. Covey for all and my deeply respect for his family in this moment. God bless you. ”
58 of 100+ | Posted by: Jose Antonio Delgado - Follower

“May God bless Stephen Covey and his family. He was a wonderful friend and Sundance neighbor; his influence for good and his positive example will be...Read More »
59 of 100+ | Posted by: Harris H. Simmons - UT - Friend

“Dr. Covey was one of the persons who impacted my life, specially with his best seller "The 7 habits...". HIs legacy will live on. May God through his...Read More »
60 of 100+ | Posted by: Lucas André Albrecht

“I reflect on the memories shared by your family, the continued good works others are sharing, and in this I think I hear the rising of his crescendo...Read More »
61 of 100+ | Posted by: Robert Hovis - CA

“Thank for for the the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People book, which has led me lead a successful life personally and help many of my people around...Read More »
62 of 100+ | Posted by: Lionel Watson Melbourne Australia

“I was so fortunate to have Dr. Covey teach a smallish group of us. His energy radiated throughout the room. His teachings have changed my life. He...Read More »
63 of 100+ | Posted by: Evelyn Turner - Bellingham, WA

“I met Dr. Covey 1 time in 2005 at the Metro State College of Denvers' at the Auraria Campus. I sat front and center at one of his speaking...Read More »
64 of 100+ | Posted by: Keith Dorsey - Denver, CO

“The best professor I ever had. Your spirit will be always with us through your teachings and your example. The good you made can not be measured....Read More »
65 of 100+ | Posted by: Jose Insenser - Madrid

“Thank you Covey family for sharing your husband, father and grandfather to the world. What a sacrifice, but to know how many lives he impacted must...Read More »
66 of 100+ | Posted by: CFoster - Atlanta, GA

“Stephen Covey taught me more than I could relate and for that I am ever grateful. What I also learned was that I also need then to teach others and I...Read More »
67 of 100+ | Posted by: Steven King - NY

“Stephen R. Covey was one one of most influential leaders of the 20th century. He was also profoundly influential in my life, as his work saved me...Read More »
68 of 100+ | Posted by: Weldon Long | Writer, Speaker and Entrepreneur - CO

“This is first and foremost a loss for the family. My condolences to you. But this is also a loss for all of his readers. I think I bought "Spiritual...Read More »
69 of 100+ | Posted by: Bjorn Engelbrektsson

“God bless Stephen. Thank you. What you've done is timeless. My condolences to the entire family. Sincerely, Ara ”
70 of 100+ | Posted by: Ara Talaslian - Montreal

“I have never met you but I feel as I have known you for years. Words can't describe what I have learned from you and how your books have formed me...Read More »
71 of 100+ | Posted by: Robert Allen - CA


“I only knew Stephen for a short time but felt like he was a kindred spirit. I got to know him well as he was healing from his accident. Although...Read More »
73 of 100+ | Posted by: Miriam Cook - Orem/Provo, UT

“My heart goes out to your entire family during this difficult time. When my own mother died the sadness and grief washed over me in ways that caught...Read More »
74 of 100+ | Posted by: Debbie Davis - Ogden, UT

“Stephen has inspired and lifted me as I have studied the books and words that he left. I saw him in January of this year, 2012, at his home and was...Read More »
75 of 100+ | Posted by: James Larsen - Provo, UT - friend

“May God continue to bless you in Heaven as you have blessed all of us here on Earth. Thank you for sharing your gifts. Kim ”
76 of 100+ | Posted by: Kim Elizabeth Manning

“Thank you Stephen for sharing so much with the world. Your systems of values and principles, personal and public victory, first things first and so...Read More »
77 of 100+ | Posted by: Stephen

“I have long adored the writings and talks of Brother Covey. This past Christmas my youngest son and I listened intently to several of his books on...Read More »
78 of 100+ | Posted by: Resa LaRu Kirkland - Orem, UT

“Everyday your teachings inform my life and the choices I make. I was fortunate enough to attend my first class (Seven Habits) in 1994. The ensuing...Read More »
79 of 100+ | Posted by: Laura Moriarty - South Lake Tahoe, CA

“You gave me wisdom and confidence to be a man of integrity and strong believes. Thank you so much Sir. I am forever greatful. You are a hero in my...Read More »
80 of 100+ | Posted by: Niclas - Stockholm

“Stephen, I never met you. I don't know you, but you have and continue to help me in my life. Your advice in your teachings and your books is...Read More »
81 of 100+ | Posted by: Justin Brewer - Charlotte, NC

“Thank you for sharing, leading and teaching me the last 35 years. Blessings to your entire family. ”
82 of 100+ | Posted by: Brett Potter Barrett - Provo, UT

“I feel like Dr. Covey was not only a father figure to me, but to millions of other readers out there. I still remember the 1st time I read his "7...Read More »
83 of 100+ | Posted by: Jay Jackson - Las Vegas, NV

“I will miss old friend ”
84 of 100+ | Posted by: scott covey - gardners, PA

“Gracias por cambiar mi vida que es una antes de leer sus conceptos y ptra después. Nos queda el compromiso moral de seguir enseñando su...Read More »
85 of 100+ | Posted by: Juan Carlos Feijoó - Caracas

“I read my first Stephen R. Covey book when I was in my teens ('Spiritual Roots of Human Relations') and have been influenced by his ideas and...Read More »
86 of 100+ | Posted by: Ian Govier

“My thoughts and prayers go to to the family and friends of Dr Covey. He has been a truly inspirational man. His "7 Habits of Highly Effective People"...Read More »
87 of 100+ | Posted by: Fr. Jarek Pachocki, OMI

“A beautiful eulogy for a beautiful soul. : ) ”
88 of 100+ | Posted by: Sheila Long - Nesbit, MS - fan

“The world is beter place because of you! Thank you for touching my life. ”
89 of 100+ | Posted by: William Lessingh - South-Africa

“I'm a recovering addict and have been clean By the Grace of God since Aug 19th, 1986. Stephen's positive affirmations, writing an teachings helped...Read More »
90 of 100+ | Posted by: Linda Nichols - Corpus Christi, TX

“For so many whom he helped, for so much he've done with his books and personal example of life, no words could express a loss feeling. Mr. Covey has...Read More »
91 of 100+ | Posted by: Andre Miguel - Sao Paulo, Brazil

“To the man who changed my life for the better and made me a better person dear Dr. Covey ~ You have touched and impacted so many lives. I live and...Read More »
92 of 100+ | Posted by: John F Catena - Kissimmee, FL

“Rip.. you have inspired so many people, me included. Forever with me on my iphone. Feel like I know you from listening to you for so many years. ...Read More »
93 of 100+ | Posted by: Valentin Bladt

“I learnt late the passing of who I considered as my Spiritual Mentor & Leader, Mr. Stephen Covey (though, of course, he never really knew me...Read More »
94 of 100+ | Posted by: Noel Carmona Dacanay - Manila

“God bless your soul Dr.Covey.You truly lived a life with great purpose.:-) ”
95 of 100+ | Posted by: Edward Croban - Bronx,New York, NY

“When I was employed at Farmland Industries, Kansas City, MO in the late 1980's, then CEO Jim Rainey, was deploying 7H training to 100% of his staff,...Read More »
96 of 100+ | Posted by: Linda J. Nolte - Redmond, OR

“Since I attended the official 7Habits seminar here in the Philippines years back, I have been guided by the principles taught by Mr. Covey. I was...Read More »
97 of 100+ | Posted by: Estrella Barlis

“The true measure of a man is the legacy he leaves behind. Though you have left us, what you have taught us will live on in perpetuity. Rest in...Read More »
98 of 100+ | Posted by: Evron Simon

“I learned and benefited so much from (and now have the pleasure of teaching others) the wisdom shared for so many years by Stephen Covey. The impact...Read More »
99 of 100+ | Posted by: Scott Doggett - Orlando, FL

“RIP man of principles who thought the world to look and think long Turm and made everything make sense, Heaven be your place and god bless your soul ”
100 of 100+ | Posted by: Mohamed Essam - Cairo - Student

Our beloved husband, father, and grandfather, Stephen R. Covey, passed away peacefully at a hospital in Idaho Falls, Idaho, early on the morning of July 16, 2012, due to the residual effects of a bicycle accident he sustained this past April. He was in his 80th year. In his final hours, he was surrounded by his loving wife and each of his nine children and their spouses, which was a tender mercy of the Lord and something he always desired.

Stephen was born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah, to Stephen Glenn and Irene Louise Richards Covey. He attended East High School and graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in business. Following his graduation, Stephen served a mission to the British Isles. Upon his return, he earned an MBA from Harvard Business School and then began his teaching career at Brigham Young University where he later earned his doctorate degree.

Stephen was a faithful member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and served in various capacities, including as a bishop, regional representative, temple sealer, and an advisor to the LDS Church Missionary Committee. At the age of 29, Stephen was called as the first mission president to Ireland, a calling he loved and which became a formative experience in his life.

It was while serving as a missionary in England that he discovered his talent and passion for teaching. In 1983, he made the decision to leave his full time teaching position at BYU, which he had thoroughly enjoyed for over 25 years, to start an organization, Covey Leadership Center (which later became FranklinCovey), with the mission of taking Principle-Centered Leadership to the world. This mission influenced him to grow a global organization with operations in over 125 countries and to personally deliver thousands of speeches to individuals, leaders, CEO's, Generals, and Heads of State from all around the globe and to write dozens of books which have sold millions of copies in numerous languages. He thereby influenced literally tens of millions of people and thousands of organizations and communities everywhere. He was always surprised and embarrassed by his professional success and simply saw himself as a steward of the great work he was doing, always giving credit to God.

Dad's greatest joy was his family. He'd prefer to spend time with his wife, kids, and grandkids than with anyone else. He loved family trips, special one-on-one dates, birthdays, farewells and homecomings, kids' sporting events, skiing at Sundance, and late night talks. He loved spending time in Montana on the lake where he taught us to water-ski, drive boats, ride bikes, fish, and shoot the bow and arrow and BB guns. He loved gathering his family and holding family councils and firesides where he would teach us important lessons such as how to make Christ the center of our lives or how to better serve Mom so that we "don't kill her off."

Dad simply adored Mom, the former Sandra Merrill, and the love of his life, whom he met while he was a missionary and she was traveling abroad as the youngest member of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. They later married on August 14, 1956, in the Salt Lake Temple, a marriage which led to nine children, 52 grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren.

Dad loved the Savior and believed that if you put Him at the center of your life, everything else would fall into place. He was humble, compassionate, and generous to a fault. He had unbelievable optimism, was so affirming, and saw the good in everyone.

He frequently played practical jokes on his friends, and let the kids build peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on his bald head more than once. He had a multitude of friends from all walks of life. He enjoyed riding his bike, watching inspiring movies, eating Chinese food and cherry-chocolate malts, attending BYU sporting events, and asking his wife to sing in public without any warning whatsoever.

Throughout his life, on most mornings, he would arise early, go to a place where he could be alone, and he would pray, meditate, and study the scriptures. This daily private victory, as he coined it, became the source of his security, guidance, wisdom, and power and he often told us kids that "if you will spend twenty minutes each day with the Savior of the world in private worship, you will spend eternity in his presence."

We are grateful for our knowledge of the Plan of Salvation and know that our patriarch has been taken home to a loving Heavenly Father and is now with his sweet mother and father, his sister Marilyn, and many other relatives and friends. We will sorely miss our "Papa" and long for the day when we will once again be united.

Stephen is survived by his wife of nearly 56 years, Sandra Merrill; his nine children and their spouses: Cynthia (Kameron) Haller, Maria (David) Cole, Stephen M.R. (Jerolyn) Covey, Sean (Rebecca) Covey, David (Pamelyn) Covey, Catherine (Paul) Sagers, Colleen (Matthew) Brown, Jenny (Jason) Pitt, Joshua (Jenny) Covey; his siblings: Irene (Cal) Gaddis, Helen Jean Williams, and his best friend and brother John (Jane) Covey.

Funeral services will be held at 1:00 p.m., Saturday, July 21, 2012 at the UCCU Events Center at Utah Valley University, 800 W. University Parkway, Orem, Utah (just off of the University Parkway freeway exit). Friends may call from 5:00-8:00 p.m., Friday, July 20 at the Oak Hills Stake Center, 925 East North Temple Drive, Provo, Utah (across from the Provo LDS Temple) and at the UCCU Events Center, Saturday, from 11:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m. prior to services. Condolences may be entered on his obituary at

If desired, donations may be made to the I Am A Leader Foundation, a charity supported by Stephen and dedicated to developing character and leadership skills in children and youth in public schools. Please visit any Zions Bank location for assistance or send your donation to: I Am A Leader Foundation, PO Box 1936, Provo, UT 84603, USA.