David and Stacey McDowell of Montpelier are moving to Bow, New Hampshire, this week.
After teaching Seminary and Institute classes in Montpelier for a little over 16 years and serving as Bishop of the Montpelier Third Ward for the past five years, David McDowell is being transferred to coordinate the New England area for morning Seminary and Institute. He will be coordinating all early morning teachers in Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine as well as teaching Institute at the universities there.
David and Stacey have five children: Michael (22) who just got married in the Provo LDS Temple the week before Christmas to the lovely Ziely from Brazil and is attending school at BYU and wants to be a chiropractor; McKay (20) who works for LZ Custom Homes and lives in Montpelier; Elisabeth (18) who is a freshman at BYU studying human development; and Joseph and Benjamin (14) who have been freshmen at Bear Lake High School and are the only ones who will be moving to New Hampshire with their parents. Joseph and Benjamin will be attending Bow High School.
David grew up in Prescott, Arizona, where he graduated from Prescott High School. He then went to BYU where he studied International Relations and graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree. He received his Master’s Degree from Utah State University.
Stacey grew up in Rexburg and graduated from Red Mountain High School in Mesa, Arizona. She studied Elementary Education at BYU graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree.
David and Stacey met while working at Glacier National Park in Montana. They had both taken a summer job there with best friends. Her best friend liked Dave’s best friend. By the end of the summer, the two friends weren’t together, but Dave and Stacy were. They waited tables at the main lodge and worked all the same shifts together since they had asked to have Sundays off. All of their days off were together so they hiked and saw all the “cool” stuff around Glacier.
David had served a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to Eugene, Oregon, but Stacey hadn’t served a mission yet, and she wanted to, so she went on a mission to England and Wales. They wrote letters while she was gone, and she said it was great to get to know each other and have a shared mission experience.
She had only been home from her mission a month when they got engaged, then two months later they were married in the Mesa, Arizona, LDS Temple. They just celebrated their 24th anniversary.
During their marriage, they have also lived in American Fork where Stacey taught 6th grade and pre-school for a time and Provo where she also taught 6th grade. Then David got hired as a Seminary teacher in Afton for three years where Stacey taught 4th grade. They then moved to Cache Valley for four years before moving to Bear Lake where they’ve been for over 16 years.
While living in Montpelier, The McDowell’s have been involved in many aspects of the valley. Not only has David been Bishop of the Montpelier 3rd Ward, but he sang in the Easter Cantata every year, he played in guitar and sang in the community talent show one year, and he coached his kids’ soccer teams when they were little. The two of them sat on the bleachers of the soccer games every year to support the teams.
Stacey was just released as Relief Society President of the Montpelier 3rd Ward. She was involved in the Arts Council for a time and in the PTOs of AJ Winters, Bear Lake Middle School, and Bear Lake High School.
Both David and Stacey say they “love, love, love Bear Lake.” They say it is the perfect place to raise kids and they love the people here. They have lived here longer than anywhere else their whole lives, and it has truly been home. They are heartbroken to leave, but know they are supposed to move to New Hampshire as well.
Stacey says, “We want to thank the valley for being so wonderful; all the coaches, teachers, doctors, and friends here. We’ve truly loved it and everybody. If anyone gets a hankering to travel out to New Hampshire, look us up. We would welcome you with open arms!”