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G. William Richards

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G. William Richards (1918-2005) was a prominent Latter-day Saint (Mormon) composer and organist. Two hymns in the current English version of the church hymnbook are set to music written by Brother Richards.

Richards was the son of Stayner Richards, and his mother was the former Jane Taylor.

As a young man, Brother Richards served as a missionary in the Eastern States Mission. He was, however, transfered to the California Mission to serve as organist of the Church's exhibit at the San Francisco World's Fair.

Richards served in the United States Army during World War II. He was a chaplain's assistant and carried an organ with him. He was involved in the Battle of the Bulge as well as the liberation of some German death camps.

Richards then studied at the University of California, Berkeley, the Manhattan School of Music, and Columbia University. He later was a faculty member at New York University as well as serving as organist for various non-denominational services.

Brother Richards married Claire Dyreng, whom he met while they were both music students in New York, in the Manti Temple in August of 1955. They had four children.

Richards later moved his family to Reno, Nevada, where he served as Executive Vice-President of the Nevada Division of the American Cancer Society.

After he retired, Richards took courses at Utah Technical College (now Utah Valley University) in building and construction.

Richards served in many positions in the LDS Church including as bishop of the Manhattan Ward and as a member of a stake high council.

Brother Richards was also a member of the commitee that organized the 1985 English version of the LDS hymnbook. Among the hymns in that publication with music by Elder Richards is "From Homes of Saints Glad Songs Arize" (hymn # 297).

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