Portraits of Moab…1988-1993, #5…by Jim Stiles

In the late 80s and early 90s, I was taking a lot of pictures of Moab’s ‘survivors.’ the ones who decided to tough out the hard times and make a new life. Here is Part 5 of my collection of Great Moab Faces…JS


ZEKE & MARALEE FRANCIS, long-time Moab residents and the owners of Four Corners Design. Great Zephyr supporters for many years and parents of the most amazing kids you’ve ever seen. Zeke died suddenly in 2008. Maralee still lives in Moab. Here’s a link to a recent story about their youngest son, Jacob:



VERNON ERB, a lifetime resident of Moab, started the Hogan Trading Company in what was then “The Grand Emporium” building at the corner of Main & Center Streets. A few years later, he built his own shop a block south and still owns one of the classiest shops in town.


BILL BENGE came to Moab in the early 70s from California and never left. He became the youngest County Attorney in Utah history when he was elected at age 27. He served Grand County for 30 years before his death in 2006.

For more on my old pal, here’s a link:


DAVE BAKER and his wife SHIRLEY came to Moab in 1949 from near Debeque, Colorado. He worked for the Skakel Family, who owned what is now “Moab Springs Condos” north of town, had a urnaium claim staking company fora while, worked for public roads and at the Atlas Mill before finally going to work for the Park Service in 1966. He stayed 26 years and retired in 1990.  Shirley passed away in 2004. Dave continued to grow one of the most remarkable gardens in Southeast Utah.

For a wonderful interview with dave and Shirley by Jean McDwell for the Dan O’Laurey Museum, follow this link”


TOM STOCKS was a Moab Native, from one of the community’s oldest and most respected families.
He served as Moab’s colorful and sometimes controversial mayor for 18 years, and saw the community transformed during those two decades.
Tom finally moved to southwest Utah in the mid-90s where he was elected mayor of  LaVerkin.
He died suddenly in September 2011.

To read the PDF version of this article, click here.

Don’t forget our loyal Backbone members!

And our Lifetime Backbone members!

2 comments for “Portraits of Moab…1988-1993, #5…by Jim Stiles

  1. Cris Sarten
    June 4, 2013 at 2:07 pm

    Wow! My daughter, Sara was searching for pictures of her G’pa…..and we came across this website. Seeing Bill K., Mikey M., and many others made me smile. Still waiting for a picture of Devin V. in a skirt! The picture of my daddy captured his spirit…..Thank you.

  2. rick garvin
    June 7, 2013 at 11:30 am

    I had a friend in Moab who ran the card shop a.k.a games his name was LG and I can’t remember his last name but he had a stroke about 5 years ago and I’m afraid something may have happened to him anybody know who I’m talking about?

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