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Rodney Owens Bradshaw

03/15/1925 - 04/25/2020

Rodney Owens Bradshaw, 95, passed away peacefully at home on Saturday, April 25, 2020. He was born on March 15, 1925, in Mesa, Arizona and was a lifelong and active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and resident of Mesa. Rodney was the student body president of Mesa High School Class of 1943 and kept track of his classmates throughout his life. During World War II, he served as a pilot in the U.S. Army Air Corps, flying a B25 Mitchell bomber in 34 missions over Italy, and discharged with the rank of captain. After the war ended, he served a mission for two and a half years in Argentina.

He married Ruth Skouson on March 23, 1951 in the Mesa Arizona Temple, and they enjoyed deep happiness together for 63 years until her death in 2014. Rodney attended Arizona State University, earning a BA, a MA, and enough hours for a PhD (ABD). He worked as a junior high school teacher and administrator for 27 years, spending his off hours building beautiful furniture and raising eight lively children with Ruth. He was involved with the Boy Scouts of America all his life; he was an Eagle Scout with three palms, a Scoutmaster, a recipient of the Silver Beaver award, and the inspiration for his six sons and 15 grandsons to become Eagle Scouts as well. He was just as proud of his two daughters and 18 granddaughters for receiving their Young Womanhood Recognition award.

Rodney is survived by his sons Aaron (Donna), Kim (Dina), Blair (Sheron), Richard (Sian), Rusty (Juli), and Philip (Wendy); his daughters Gayle (David) Thomas and Ruthann (Carlton) Van Leuven; 33 grandchildren, and 75 great-grandchildren; also his sister Cecile Ashby. He was predeceased by his wife Ruth, his parents, Samuel Silas Bradshaw and Clara Estella McClellan Bradshaw, his grandson Joshua Bradshaw, and 11 brothers and sisters.

Due to current conditions, services were limited to immediate family. A memorial service will be scheduled for a later date.


  • David and Elaine DeTemple

    What an amazing life and posterity. It is legendary. He will be missed

  • Jane M. Wainwright

    My prayers are for you Donna and your family at this very sad time. The WW I I men were the best.

  • K T Christensen

    The best grandpa and my mom’s beloved daddy. We all love you so much.

  • Gary and Beverly Van Horn

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family’s.

  • Gary and Lillian Brady

    Our condolences. What an amazing man. He will be greatly missed.

  • I loved that Uncle of mine. He was so talented and an inspiration person. Men like him doesn’t come around often. May he find his sweet heart in heaven and we will meet again.

  • James and Patricia Spiers

    Rodney was a stellar example of how to live a life. May God bless his posterity.

  • Kerry & Ellen Adams

    One of God’s noble yeomen… he leaves a legacy of love, labor, of living the Scout Law and Oath. His life is a leitmotif of faith, diligence, integrity and industry. We are grateful for his acquaintance and to share in small measure his posterity.

  • Doug Forrest

    As an employee of Bunkers helping out with hosting viewings for families paying respects to their lost loved ones I saw Rodney at the funeral home on several occasions. It seemed like he knew everyone and everyone knew him. The last time I saw Rodney was when he came to another viewing. I remember he was greeted at the door by one of his nieces. As they embraced she asked him “how old are you now Uncle Rodney?” His quick reply was “That’s none of your business” with a warm smirky grin on his face.
    I’m grateful to know some of the Bradshaws – Rusty and Juli and their family in particular.
    My sincere condolences to the entire family. Rodney will be missed.
    With love.
    Doug Forrest

  • E. Gene Shumway

    Any way you define the word “it,” I don’t think a normal lifespan on this earth can be lived more successfully and effectively than Rodney did it! What a guy. Gene Shumway, MUHS class of 1943

  • It’s tough to be separated from your Dad at any age. Condolence to the six of you.

    Any. way you look at it, I don’t think it can be done any better than Rodney did it!

  • Sandra Nesbit Money

    What a life he lived. Faithful and lively to the end of his earthly days.

    Before he left for Argentina, waiting for his Visa to arrive, he met and taught my Father, Ed Nesbit, the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

    He left for South America before my Father was baptized. Luckily 50+ years later I was able to tell him my Dad was baptized and was faithful to his last breath.

    Our Nesbit Family will always be eternally grateful.

    Sandy Nesbit Money

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