John Talmage “Tal” Huber, Husband, Father, Grandfather, Great-Grandfather, and Friend returned home to his Heavenly Father on December 31, 2023.
Tal was born September 22, 1931, in Mesa, Arizona to Lee Jacob and Gladys Leona Pomeroy Huber. On September 22, 1955, he married the love of his life, LaRae Jenson in the Mesa Arizona Temple, to whom he was married for 68 years. Tal was devoted to LaRae and his five children and was a powerful example and patriarch to his family.
He is preceded in death by his parents Lee Jacob and Leona Huber, older brothers Melvin and Clarence Huber and step-grandson Timothy Robinson. He is survived by his wife, LaRae, brother Lee Huber and children; Kerri (Brent) Robinson, Marcie (Gray) Gallacher, Tammy Anderson, Jon (Denae) Huber and Joel Huber, 23 Grandchildren and 24 Great-Grandchildren.
Throughout his life, Tal nurtured a strong testimony of and desire to serve in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and share his love of the Gospel. He served an honorable mission in Brazil and continued to speak Portuguese throughout his life. He served as Bishop three times, as a Branch President twice, in several Bishoprics and has had many callings working with adults and youth. He and LaRae served many years at the Provo MTC as well as Temple Workers at the Mount Timpanogos Temple.
Following his mission, Tal attended Arizona State University where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Animal Science and Biochemistry. He also completed ROTC training and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the US Army Reserve Medical Service Corps. He completed his active-duty military training at Brook Army Medical Center in San Antonio, TX and served in the US Army Active Reserve for 30 years, attaining the rank of Colonel.
Following his active military service, Tal and LaRae moved to Ames, Iowa where Tal received his PhD in Dairy Science from Iowa State University. Upon graduation, Tal accepted a professorship at Virginia Polytechnic Institute (VPI) in Blacksburg, Virginia where he taught and did research. Following 6 years at VPI, Tal was recruited to Michigan State University (MSU) in East Lansing, Michigan, where he continued his teaching and dairy research for 18 years. He then took a research and teaching position at the University of Arizona in Tucson, Arizona, where he retired.
Professionally, Tal’s research and training of graduate students from countries throughout the world leaves an enduring legacy. He traveled to many countries assisting farmers with nutrition and increasing their dairy yields. He was a member of the American Dairy Science Association (ADSA) and was awarded the following distinctive awards: The American Feed Manufacturers Award (1968); Researcher of the Year (1993); Outstanding Dairy Nutritionist (1997); Fellow of ADSA (1997) and Outstanding Research in Dairy Science (Borden Award).
Tal was curious and loved learning. He noticed and put the needs of others ahead of his own. He would often go out of his way to help when he saw someone in need. He loved his family, the gospel, his country and loved playing and watching basketball at almost every opportunity. But, with all of Tal’s academic and professional success, the most important things in Tal’s life were always his faith in Jesus Christ and his family.
Funeral services will be held Saturday, January 6, 2024, at 11:00 AM at the LDS Orchard 6th Ward Chapel at 1120 East 600 North, Orem, UT. Family and friends are invited to a viewing at the chapel from 10:00 – 10:40 AM.
For those unable to attend the funeral service in person, you will be able to watch the service on your mobile device via Zoom at: https://zoom.us/j/92194079926#success beginning shortly before 11:00 AM.
Interment and a graveside service and grave dedication will be at the Mesa City Cemetery in Mesa, Arizona on Friday January 12, 2024 at 1:00 p.m.