What a difference 50 years of goodness makes...


Over the last 50 years many lives and situations have been blessed because of the lives of Joe & Isabel Free. They will tell you it is the Lord that has blessed them, and that is true. However, they have lived their lives for others and that results in great blessings because they are doing His work. How appropriate that on this 50th anniversary they find themselves on the other side of the world and equator in South Africa on their 3rd mission.

Help us show them how much of a difference the Lord has helped them make in so many lives. Please click on "add new comment" once or twice or as many times as you want to record memories of a difference you are aware of. (if you don't see "add new comment" please choose "register")

We also need your help to spread the news far and wide so that on the 9th of September it will take all day for them to try to read the impact they have had.

Come back often and read of what others have shared, it might prompt some more memories to share.

Please include who you are and how you came to know them as you share your memories.


ps-Some have asked if they could give something. It is not necessary, but if you feel that you would like to give a gift, beyond your memories, we have set up a fund where you can donate. This fund will be used by Joe & Isabel to "make a difference" in the lives of some wonderful friends in South Africa. Just click on the "donate" button to the right.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

from kent

I am very happy with your anniversery.thank you for letting us sleepover at your house in parreguna.

From Anna

Congratulations on fifty years!
I'm very happy for you!

One of my most favorite memories with grandma and grandpa was when we had a big family get together were Uncle johny would bring delicious jell-o, And when aunt marilee cooked delicious food for us. I always liked the lessons that grandpa would always do that were easy for me to understand.I always liked the way grandpa was always wearing a smile. in fact I've never seen him frown! (the same goes for Grandma of course!)

Another one of my favorite memories would be when grandma taught me how to crochet.She let me crochet a little bit of the scarf that she was making for brett. I also remember the time grandma let me buy anythig that I wanted for my birthday at the dollar tree.Melinda had come with us and helped me glue my plastic nails on that we had bought.

And the last thing that I will never forget is how they love me and care for me all the time. It makes me feel really happy to know that someone cares for me that much!

thank you for everything!
I love you lots!!


From Chiaki

Dearest Mom and Dad

Thank you for the wonderful examples. I really don't know what I would do without you. I am just greatful that I am part of this wonderful family.
Kansha shite imasu.

Love, Chiaki


Uncle Joe & Aunt Isabel-

Happy 50th Anniversary!!

I want you to know that as a young girl coming to your home to visit was a real treat! I still remember the delicious smell of homemade wheat bread, fresh from the oven! I was always impressed with the spirit of your home and the example for righteous living which abounded everywhere. You continue to set that example today serving away from home for a 3rd time. Thank you for showing us how it is done!

With love,

Debbie & Jon Monks & family

Happy 50th Wedding Anniversary

Across the miles and continents we want to send our love and congratulations on this important milestone. Someday we hope to be able to follow in your footsteps and serve as missionaries and also to achieve 50 years of companionship as well. We've had a little trouble getting on this website--I'm pretty computer illiterate, so if this is late we apologize! I have so many fond memories its hard to know where to begin. I can recall some vacations and trips together with our family but most of all the real bond was including me in your family when I came up to BYU. I've got so many memories of canning, baking, spudnuts, Isabel's chocolate chip cookies, hydroponic tomatoes, family get togethers. You have a wonderful family and it was a treasure to be included. I remember a surprise baby shower you hosted at your home with my ward friends and neighbors. You taught me how to support my husband in his ecclesiastical duties and how to nuture my own testimony and serve faithfully in church callings. I can remember your preparation and commitment to your Spiritual Living lessons. You were the glue that kept us together-- when loved ones were in town planning and organizing and hosting. I marvel at that because our family size and responsibilities are so similar and I wonder how you did it. You welcomed Wayne with open arms and I can remember how you commented on our marriage, kneeling across the altar in the St. George temple. He loves you and your family--bonds have been cemented with the addition, the rototiller, family get togethers. You have both been an example on how to courageously face challenges that come in raising a family and remaining stalwart, firm in your testimony and convictions and yet showing Christlike compassion, forgiveness and respecting their agency. You have gone before and shown us the way it is to be done. You have always been deeply in love with each other and very supportive of one another. We are feel so blessed to be included in honoring you. May you be enveloped in all our love. coming from all over the world, from lives you have touched and blessed. Wayne and Nita

Happy 50th Anniversary. Congratulation Comments from Robert H. &

Dear Joe and Isabel,

What a privilege! I am grateful for the opportunity to write a few words and to congratulate you on the 50th Anniversary of your wedding.

I apologize that I have not had the opportunity to respond sooner to this special invitation. Do you remember capstone Joe? I’m sure that you do. This fall we have 220 students and 32 projects—more students than we have ever had. You can imagine that we have been pretty busy these past few weeks trying to get set up for the new year as your son’s invitation came.

I remember well when I arrived at BYU as a new faculty member in the fall of 1989. I had just come from 10 years of experience in industry at GM and Michelin with responsible positions in Sr. project engineering and Sr. management. Although Joe was in a different department than I was as I started at BYU, he took me under his wing and helped me make the adjustment back into academia. We had 8 children—all at home except for our oldest son who had just left on a mission.

During the fall of the following year we started BYU’s now internationally recognized Capstone course. Joe Free and Jay Kunzler had a wonderful vision and it was a privilege for Carl Sorensen, Spencer Magleby and myself to help bring it into reality. The goal was to create a two-semester course for our students in which they would be formed into interdisciplinary teams and be given to opportunity to tackle real industrially sponsored design and build projects. The goal was that students would learn a structured design process that would go with them throughout their lives and have the opportunity to really learn it by trying it out on a real-life project accountable to a real customer. BYU’s Mechanical Engineering Capstone course has become recognized as a leader in mentoring undergraduate students in the practice of engineering and preparing them for leadership in their professional lives. The course has been nominated and has received a number of awards for its success. Later, when I became a department chair myself, Joe again was a great help to me in my stewardship as additional opportunities for service came.

During those earlier years at BYU I found myself in Joe and Isabel’s home a number of times and each time I was there I felt the Spirit of the Holy Ghost and a special peace there. I came to know that Joe and Isabel were ‘equally yoked’ in their stewardship as husband and wife and that they had a great love for each other.

Many years ago when my wife, Janell, and I were married in the Salt Lake Temple, we were sealed by a wonderful man who gave us some counsel after we were married. He said, “You think you love each other now, and I know that you do, (he knew each of us sometime before we were married). If you keep the covenants that you have made here in this temple today—just wait 5 years, 25 years, 50 years and 500 years, I promise you that your love for each other will grow at least a thousand fold more than what it is today.” My precious wife and I have not reached the 50 or 500 year mark yet but I have come to know with Janell that what this special man said to us is true and I sense that Joe and Isabel Free—who have reached the 50 years mark, know it is true as well.

We love you Joe and Isabel. Congratulations to you and your special and wonderful family on this special and wonderful event in your lives.

Sincerely with love,

Robert H. and Janell S. Todd