Family Organization



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Mormon Pioneer Ancestors of George & Olive Osmond

The Osmonds: Side by Side
(a YouTube video: 1-hour 35-minutes long, uploaded in 2012)

History of George and Olive Osmond

George Virl Osmond (1917-2007)

Obituary, Deseret News, November 9, 2007
     George Virl Osmond Father and Patriarch of Legendary Osmond Family Passes Away at 90

     George Virl Osmond, father and patriarch of one of the world's most esteemed entertainment families, The Osmonds, passed away peacefully of natural causes the morning of November 6, 2007, at his home in Provo, Utah. He was 90 years old.The father of nine children, Virl, Tom, Alan, Wayne, Merrill, Jay, Donny, Marie and Jimmy. George Osmond was born on October 13, 1917, in Star Valley, Wyoming. He liked to be known as "The Wyoming Cowboy," never forgetting his western roots. A devout Mormon, Osmond served two missions for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, one in the state of Hawaii and one in the United Kingdom. Osmond was also a respected veteran of World War II. He met and married Olive Davis on Dec. 1, 1944, in the Salt Lake City Temple. As he and Olive began their life together, George worked in real estate, sold insurance and worked as a postmaster for the city of Ogden. Little did he know that from such humble beginnings, what would become one of the world's most renowned musical families. George Osmond loved to sing, and taught his children to sing barbershop harmony. It wasn't long before the community and public took notice of the talented kids and they started performing at church functions and at local civic events. Managing his talented sons, George arranged for them to perform at Disneyland in California, where they caught the eye and were mentioned by Walt Disney himself. History was made when the Osmonds were offered a chance to audition for Andy Williams, an opportunity which would forever change their lives. Living for his childrens' success, George gave up his life and work in Utah and he and his wife Olive soon moved the family to California when it looked as though entertainment would be the future of their talented family. George believed that family was the most important element in his life and he loved each of his children equally. He believed that families are forever eternal and throughout his life, instilled that faith in each of his children. He loved his only wife Olive intensely, who passed away in 2004. George Osmond lived his life true to his faith and true to his family. He was never heard to say a bad word about anyone and he treated everyone equally and with the utmost respect. He and his wife Olive founded The Osmond Foundation, which would later become the Children's Miracle network, the largest charitable organization of its kind serving children's hospitals worldwide. The Osmonds are of the belief that this should be a time of celebration instead of grief. George Osmond leaves nine childrenVirl, Tom, Alan, Wayne, Merrill, Jay, Donny, Marie, and Jimmy, 55 grandchildren, and 48 great-grandchildren. His legacy will forever be remembered.

Olive May Davis Osmond (1925-2004)

Deseret News article, May 10, 2004

     Olive Osmond, matriarch of a Utah family of famous entertainers, was being remembered on Mother's Day for her devotion to her nine children and her millions of "children" throughout the world.
     Mrs. Osmond, who had been suffering the effects of numerous strokes over the past 5 1/2 years, died about 4:40 a.m. Sunday at her Provo home, surrounded by family. She had turned 79 on Tuesday.
     A spokesman said her family felt relief that she had been released from suffering. "They've been anticipating this, but nothing prepares you for the time, or (for) it to come on Mother's Day," family spokesman Ron Clark said.
     Mrs. Osmond's health had declined in recent weeks, and all of her children were able to say their goodbyes. Some were not at her bedside when she passed because they had contractual obligations, but they were en route to Utah Sunday.
     Messages from fans throughout the world were posted to Mrs. Osmond's Web site, http://www.oliveosmond.com.
     A woman identified as "Cindy" wrote she was sorry for the loss. "I grew up with your family on TV and radio. I felt that I knew you through this media."
     Mrs. Osmond was born in Samaria, Idaho, in 1925 to Thomas and Vera Ann Davis. Her father was a school principal, which Clark believes explained why she loved reading all her life.
     She moved to Ogden and worked as a secretary at the Adjutant General Depot where she met a young soldier, George V. Osmond, and wrote in her diary, "Today I met someone who's going to mean a lot to me."
      They married in 1944. Early in their marriage, she played saxophone in a band that performed at local dances. She later played the sax on television for family Christmas specials, albeit reluctantly. "Her kids (would) say, 'Look, we're producing the shows, you're going on,' " said Clark, who was the executive director of corporate communications for the family for 14 years.
     Mrs. Osmond complied because she believed the specials promoted a "positive aspect of family, in this case, a large family," he said.
     The Osmonds' first two sons, Virl and Tom, developed degenerative hearing losses that also affected their speech, Clark said. Their subsequent seven children — Alan, Wayne, Merrill, Jay, Donny, Marie and Jimmy — did not develop the same hearing problem and went on to musical fame and fortune.
"She knew the kids wanted to sing. They loved to sing together," Clark said. "It became something they enjoyed so much, she and George put their lives on hold."
     In an interview this year, Merrill Osmond said the family originally began entertaining to raise money to send family members on missions for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
     The family traveled to Southern California in the early 1960s hoping to break into show biz on "The Lawrence Welk Show." They couldn't get an audition, and the children started to get discouraged.
     "Olive said, 'We're not going to sit here and be miserable. Let's go someplace to play and have fun,' " Clark said.
     The family went to Disneyland and began alternating songs with a barbershop quartet they ran into on Main Street. Soon, Walt Disney hired them to promote Disney attractions, and the family moved from Ogden to Southern California.
     They returned to Ogden when the Disney contract was up but moved back after landing a contract on an Andy Williams television show. They got a contract with MGM Records in 1971.
     "And as they say, the rest is history," Clark said.
     The Osmond Brothers garnered dozens of platinum and gold albums. "The Donny and Marie Show" ran for four seasons on television in the 1970s.
     The family moved back to Utah at the end of 1972 and built a recording studio in Provo, commuting to Los Angeles when necessary.
     Mrs. Osmond prioritized the events of the day. She never let herself get down, and the word "cannot" was not in her vocabulary, Clark said. "She handled it very well. She was highly organized. She was so positive." Mrs. Osmond knew music made her children happy. But she also defined success as having strong faith and character.
     "She has succeeded. This is a very unified family. And in show business, that does not very often prevail," Clark said.
     She wanted other children to be positive, too.
     Osmond fan club members received one of two teen magazines: Osmond Spotlight, for residents in the United States, or Spotlight World, for residents in Europe that included Mrs. Osmond's words of positive reinforcement. She wanted to help build young people's self-esteem.
     "She wanted to touch their lives. She didn't want to convert them to Mormonism. She just wanted them to be secure with what they were," Clark said.
     Today, Virl and Tom are working and taking care of their families. Alan is on a speaking tour promoting values with the World Family Organization. Jimmy owns two theaters in Branson, Mo. Donny is still performing and recording. Marie has a syndicated radio program. Wayne, Merrill and Jay are on tour together.
     Mrs. Osmond also is survived by her husband, George, 55 grandchildren and 22 great-grandchildren.

Historical Publications

     The Osmond Family Organization has published three books on their family history, which can be freely viewed or purchased online and are listed below:

Osmond Ancestry and Genealogies. This 131-page book was published in 2010 and can be freely viewed online or purchased from Amazon.

Osmond Ancestry Book. This 21-page book was published in 2009 and can be freely viewed online or purchased from Amazon.

Davis Ancestry Book. This 21-page book was published in 2009 and can be freely viewed online or purchased from Amazon.


You can contact the OFO through its email address at: officer@osmondfamily.org

OFO Email: officer@osmondfamily.org