He was born in Spokane, Washington, Oct. 23, 1941 to Roy L. and Viola I. Lathrom. They later divorced and Viola married Robert G. Caine, who raised Roy and his older brother, David, as his own. The family lived in Spokane, Washington, Silverton, Colorado, Salt Lake City, Utah, and La Sal, Utah, and finally moved to Moab Utah, where Roy entered his junior year in high school.
He met Pauline Thompson and they went together through their junior and senior years, getting married right out of high school in July of 1960. They made their home in Moab. To them were born three children, Lori Lee, Gregory Lynn and Jeffery Loren. In his younger years he was part of the local Jaycees, was in the Toastmasters and helped coach his two small boys’ football team.
Roy went to work for J.W. Corbin, who owned the Midland Telephone Co., in Sept. of 1961. He started as a “worm” on the line crew. He did various jobs there, retiring in 1992 as a construction inspector-splicer. He loved his work in telephony and after he retired from the telephone company, he then worked for Volt Telcom and then later was the manager for Dasco, Inc., putting telephone lines in for the local telephone company. He oversaw the installation of the fiber-optic line between Thompson and Moab. He ended that career in December of 2001.
Roy had many interests and hobbies. He could do just about anything he set his mind to, from building houses to doing electrical work. He kept everything working like clockwork. He liked to fish, especially at Dark Canyon Lake in the La Sals. He liked to hunt and he bowled league for many years — but his favorite pastime was building motors for race cars, doing mechanics and working on pet projects. He could do just about anything to keep a vehicle up and running, which was good in the younger, leaner years. In the 1960s, he souped up his 1966 Chevy and raced it at the old drag strip south of Moab. He also built a dragster and raced it as well, winning a lot of trophies to show off!
Roy had a soft spot in his heart for young people and mentored quite a few of them as he was helping them to learn to build motors, re-build carburetors and set timing for them. When he built a motor he was never “Ok” with it until it was in the vehicle, he heard how it was going to run, set the timing and then, with a big smile, he would declare, “That’s a good one.” Funny, because all of them were.
Roy had a generous and kind spirit. He had a lot of love in him. He loved God, his family, his friends and his country.
He is survived by his wife, Pauline; children, Lori (Nick) Davis, Gregory (Crissie) Lathrom and Jeff (Michelle) Lathrom; grandchildren, Melissa Davis (Hank), Nicklis (Kim) Davis, Amanda (Jared) Waldron, Joshua Lathrom, Sinda Sakala, Sarah Lathrom, Ciara Shay, and Jesse Lathrom; great-grandchildren, Chad and Kasen Davis, Taya and Avery Lathrom, Kai and Dax Waldron, Caleb, Bella and Stockton Sakala, and Kristian, Xavier and Kalista Lafoon. He is also survived by a sister, Patricia Evans and husband Paul Rice; a brother, Ed (Miriam) Caine; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins who loved him and will miss him dearly.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Robert and Viola Caine and Roy L. Lathrom; brothers, David Caine, Robert D. “Buddy” Caine, and sister, Bonnie Rae Lathrom; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Emanuel and Elsie Thompson; sisters-in-law, Muriel Devereaux and Lois Weis; and brother-in-law, Jim Renfro.
Services will be held at The Canyonlands Fellowship Church (Moab Arts and Recreation Center) on Saturday, March 25. At 10 a.m., with a graveside service to follow.
In lieu of flowers, the family would like to request donations be made to Grand County Hospice, 450 W. Williams Way, Moab, UT, 84532.
Condolences may be sent to the family at www.SpanishValleyMortuary.com.