On an ordinary morning my wife, Toni, answered the phone and her face went ashen. She quickly handed the phone to me but pressed her head against mine in an attempt to hear both sides of the conversation.
The man on the other end had asked for me. He identified himself as the Mormon Mission President from Sao Paulo, Brazil, where our 19-year-old son volunteered. Our missionary son had been sending us fascinating audio stories of living among poor but wonderful families.
Mission Presidents rarely call parents unless there’s bad news. I could feel Toni’s fingernails squeezing my arm as President Shepherd said Ben was in critical care with an unknown but possibly life-threatening illness. He was down to 140 pounds on his 6’5” frame.