Cheryl England Obituary – Obituary and Service Information
Cheryl England, 70
Cheryl Ann (Allred) England, 70, closed the next chapter of her life peacefully at home, surrounded by family, on August 12, 2021 after a long and courageous battle against multiple sclerosis and breast cancer. Cheryl was born on March 30, 1951 in Salt Lake City, Utah, to Irvin Lynn Allred and Barbara Jean (Newbold) Allred. She was the first of four children and was born when her father was fighting in Korea.
While Cheryl and her mother waited for their father to return from Korea, they lived briefly in the San Diego, California area. There a local newspaper published an article that Cheryl Ann had never met her father and was waiting for him to come home from Korea. One of the TV stations picked up the story in the newspaper and gave Cheryl’s mother some money for the rights to use her name on an upcoming TV show called “The Water Front”. The tug was named “Cheryl Ann” on the TV show.
Cheryl grew up in the East Bench area of Salt Lake City. As a teenager she took piano lessons in order to be able to afford ballet lessons at the University of Utah with William Christensen. She graduated from Skyline High School in 1969. Because of her high ACT scores, she was offered multiple scholarships, but she eventually declined all of them, agreeing with her parents to stay home and attend the University of Utah, making the best decisions of her life.
At a challenge from her friend, she enrolled in a course at the LDS Institute of Religion. On the first day of class, she saw a newly-returned missionary who she was sure she knew, and felt like she had been best friends her entire life. Later that day, her friend introduced him to Lee England. They soon found that they had grown up on the same stake, only two miles apart, but had never met.
The two were only together a few times before Lee left for Texas for his six-month training to become an aircraft maintenance specialist for the Utah Air National Guard. Cheryl said that during those six months, Lee taught her the gospel by airmail. They began dating shortly after he returned home and were married on February 12, 1971 in the Salt Lake Temple.
Cheryl worked at the Salt Lake Genealogical Library, where she trained as a professional genealogist and developed a lifelong love of genealogy. Her family teased her when they couldn’t find someone’s ancestor because they didn’t want to be found.
When Cheryl was expecting her first child, she miscarried early in the pregnancy. When she still had symptoms and severe morning sickness, her doctor did another test and found she was still pregnant. She had many problems with pregnancy, but her daughter Cheralee was born on the first day of spring in 1972. The baby was struggling, but a well-known cardiac surgeon, Russell M. Nelson, happened to be there because his wife had just given birth to their son. When Dr. Seeing Nelson Cheralee in the nursery, he found that she had heart problems. Dr. Nelson called a pediatric heart specialist and they found that she had a rare heart defect called Wolf Parkinson White Syndrome. Before that time, most children with the disease did not survive. Since they discovered it so early, they could treat her and she could go home on time with medication.
Three years later, Cheryl gave birth to their son, J Lynn. When he was just three months old, he developed meningitis and almost died. They soon found out that J Lynn was profoundly deaf as a result of the illness. This taught the whole family sign language.
They lived in Salt Lake City, Hunter, and West Valley City. When Cheryl’s asthma finally got so bad they went to the emergency room at least once a month, her doctor wrote her a prescription to move out of the Salt Lake Valley. As a result, they moved to Vernal, Utah, where Lee got a position in the Uintah County’s Sheriff’s Department. Not long after they moved, Cheryl discovered she was pregnant again after having wanted another child for several years. It was a very difficult pregnancy and she had to go to bed most of the time. Both the mother and the baby were not doing well, and as soon as they found that the baby would survive, the doctors started labor. The baby appeared to be fine, but Cheryl required a complete hysterectomy that put an end to her hopes for a large family. It soon found out that the baby, Martena, was not developing as quickly as she should. After many tests, it was found that Martena was born with cerebral palsy due to the difficult pregnancy. Cheryl immediately began investigating the disease and began doing physical therapy on Martena’s muscles on a daily basis. Doctors told Cheryl that due to Martena’s extensive brain damage, she would likely never walk or study much. However, as a result of Cheryl’s therapy and work, Martena eventually began crawling and walking and first learned to communicate using sign language. Today you would never guess that Martena still has CP
To help with family finances, Cheryl began working for the Sheriff’s Department as a dispatcher / jailer and cook. She also worked as a grocer and manager, butcher and office manager. All this time, she also took extension courses at Utah State University. In addition to her education, she completed a year-long internship at Vernal Junior High School, where she supervised a class of special needs students, which included her son J Lynn.
After living in Vernal for eight years, the oil shale market fell out and Vernal almost became a ghost town. As a result, Lee and Cheryl decided to return to Salt Lake and finish their education. Both enrolled full-time at Weber State College. After two years, Cheryl fulfilled her lifelong dream with a degree in mathematics. During her studies, she helped support the family by working as a tutor for the college.
Because the job market in Salt Lake was so poor after graduation, Lee and Cheryl took a job as dormitory parents at Ricks College in Rexburg, Idaho. Cheryl said she raised 250 young men. She also taught most of them and was nicknamed “Mathematicians”. The following year Lee got a job as a correctional investigator with the Idaho Department of Correction and they moved to Blackfoot. Cheryl soon began working for the Bingham County Sheriff’s Department, first as an 911 operator and then as a law enforcement officer. After working there for several years, she felt that she no longer had the strength to help her colleagues when they needed help in prison, so she retired early and gave up her badge. She was confirmed to have multiple sclerosis shortly afterwards. When she and the doctors researched her history, it was determined that she had likely had symptoms since fifth grade.
Cheryl couldn’t sit at home without doing long periods of time, so she and Martena both enrolled at Idaho State University. In 2007 Cheryl graduated with a degree in English, majoring in Old English Literature. During her studies she learned French and read “Old English” and “Middle English”.
Cheryl couldn’t stay home long so she started volunteering at Lee’s office to organize her papers and records. She was so good at her job that she soon got a full-time position in her Idaho Falls county office. She soon received enough credit that she was asked to move to Boise’s office to do the same with the records there. She felt poor enough now that she had to decline the offer. Not long afterwards, she became so weak from MS that she had to stop and soon had to use a wheelchair to get around.
She couldn’t stay still at home either, so she began to write. She first wrote stories about her two parents, then started writing books based on the bedtime stories she told her children. In the end she had published four books. Her health slowly deteriorated until she was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic breast cancer in the spring of 2020.
Cheryl was an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She has served in many roles in Relief Society, primary and Sunday schools. She loved teaching in any position in the Church or anywhere else.
Cheryl leaves behind her husband Lee, her children Cheralee England (Martin) from East Carbon, Utah; J Lynn England (Kenohra), from Blackfoot, Martena England, 10 grandchildren, 2 great-grandchildren; Brother Kevin Allred (Jenice) of Vernal, Utah; Sister Charlene Ryan (David, deceased) of Ogden, Utah; and sister Julie (Darren) Jensen of Salt Lake City.
Cheryl preceded her parents Lynn and Barbara Allred in death.
A funeral service will be held at Grove City Cemetery on Saturday, August 21, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. under the direction of the Hawker Funeral Home.
Expressions of condolences can be made at www.hawkerfuneralhome.com.