Affectionately know in the community as "Aunt Jody"
In honor of her courage, faith, compassion, friendship, love, and medical service to the greater Bluff community from 1882-1906.
In addition to serving the children as Bluff's Primary president for 25 years, Josephine Wood was called by Bishop Jens Nielson to serve as the community's midwife and doctor. As she had no previous experience prior to this calling, she began studying, became friends with the Indians and learned their remedies, and most of all relied on the Load to do her work. She performed well over 165 births and provided healing and comfort to any and all that were ailing, including those as far away as Moab. Although Josephine had a large family of her own, she often spent up to two weeks caring for babies and mothers in their home, which was possible due to the support of her husband Samuel and his plural wife Emma Louise Elliker.
"She took care of me when my eight children were born.... To have Aunt Jody near was worth more than medicine. Her tender touch, encouraging words, calm spirit, cheerful way, and prayers were many times the only medicine needed." -Caroline Nielson Redd
"She had something which few doctors have - the power of projecting her courage into the souls of people who are in sickness and in sorrow, and doing for them what no medicine can do." -Albert Lyman, reflecting on the lancing of a most terrible boil.
"To us it seemed quite unthinkable that any one could die in Bluff, or be born, or have pneumonia, a broken limb, or a broken heart without Aunt Jody." -Albert Lyman, after the death of his father.
"Jody was a legend. She was not just a person, but an institution." -Charles Redd, reflecting on the tiring yet cheerful care of Jody when he was a child, dangerously ill with an abscess on his lung.
As her descendants, we pay tribute to the legendary sacrifice and service Josephine Wood offered to her community and to our God. May we emulate her courage, compassion, selfless service, and stalwart faith.