Clifford Ray Utter
January 30, 1941 ~ February 25, 2013
February 26, 2013
Ray Utter, 72, passed into the arms of his Lord
and Savior on February 25, 2013, after a long
battle with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease). He died
at his home near Bonners Ferry, surrounded by
Clifford was born January 30, 1941, to David
Gibson Utter and Harriett Ellen (Harrington)
Utter in Kansas City, Missouri.
During his high school career he was active in
basketball and choir, and was also student body
president his senior year. He was a member of
FFA and showed hogs with his uncle and cousins.
On July 11, 1959, Clifford married Donna
Catharine (Dix) Utter in Harrison, Arkansas. She
was his high school sweetheart, co-worker, team
mate, and faithful friend for 52 years.
After graduating from Tri-County High School in
Jamesport, Missouri, he attended Moler Barber
College in Kansas City. He began his barber
career in Jamesport.
He eventually bought his own shop in Cameron, Missouri, and then sold it
in June, 1970, when he decided to change careers
and become a full time minister.
He moved his family to York, Nebraska, to attend
college and to prepare himself for ministry. In
1972, he moved to Lubbock, Texas, and attended
Lubbock Christian College. He graduated in 1975
with a BA in Bible and a minor in agriculture.
While in Lubbock, he also taught agriculture at
Lubbock Christian High School. In June of 1976,
he began his full time ministry with the Church
of Christ in Dora, New Mexico.
Since then, he has worked with churches in Idaho
Falls, Idaho, Washington, Iowa, Bonners Ferry,
Priest River, Pendleton, Oregon, Eureka,
Montana, and Sandpoint.
Clifford was also involved in community
organizations such as the Jaycees, Lions’ Club,
Boy Scouts, 4H, the Ministerial Alliance and
Habitat for Humanity.
Clifford loved to farm, raise cattle, help Donna
with her garden, and spend time with his
grandchildren. Anyone who knew him knew he loved
people. He wanted to help people any way he
could, whether it was helping a neighbor put up
hay, buying gas for someone, paying an electric
bill, or taking them food.
He and Donna were especially concerned if there
were children in need. He enjoyed visiting
people in their homes, in hospitals, nursing
homes or anywhere he could sit and have a cup of
coffee. He loved to laugh and to make others
laugh and always had a joke or funny story to
share wherever he went. No one was a stranger to
him. More than anything, Clifford loved the Lord
and wanted to share the gospel and Jesus’ love
with everyone one he met.
Clifford was preceded in death by Donna, his
parents, two sisters: Linda Deckman and Alice
Tobey, and two granddaughters: Meredith Elise
Stinson and Laura Marie Utter.
He is survived by son David Utter of Lawton,
Oklahoma, daughter Vicky (David) Stinson of
Spokane, son Michael “Micky” (Joy) Utter of
Mica, Washington, daughter Stephany (Curtis)
Mast of Monroe, Washinton, foster-daughter
Bonnie (Jack) Breuer of St. James, Missouri; 15
grandchildren, six great-grandchildren, four
foster children, and three siblings: sisters
Sharon (Robert) Duffer of Tulsa, Oklahoma,
Roberta McNeel of Grants Pass, Oregon, and
Hannah Mae Ferris of Lee’s Summit, Missori,
brothers Ernest (Kathy) Utter of Boring, Oregon,
Steven Utter of Owasso, Oklahoma, and David E.
Utter of Azel, Texas.
Per Clifford’s request, there will be no
memorial service. Memorial gifts may be made in
Clifford’s honor to any of the following
Clifford and Donna Utter Children's Ministry
/Youth Leadership Training Fund, C/o Boundary
County Church of Christ, PO Box 997 Bonners
Ferry, ID 83805
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Support
Organization (ALSSO) PO Box 48177 Spokane, WA
Bonner Community Hospice PO Box 1448 Sandpoint,
Family and friends are invited to sign
Clifford’s book at
Arrangements are entrusted to the care of
Bonners Ferry Funeral Home.