Skip to main content

Santry Elmer papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSS 9214

Scope and Contents

Collection includes mission journals and other personal ephemera belonging to Santry Elmer; missionary teaching material; historical reports related to the fall of South Vietnam to northern Communism; and related Church and governmental publications. Subjects of materials relate to Elmer's experience serving as a missionary in Vietnam until missionaries were evacuated in April 1975, their subsequent waiting in Hong Kong, and being reassigned to serve in Vietnamese refugee camps in California. Materials are dated approximately 1955-1980, with the bulk between 1974-1976.


  • approximately 1955-1980
  • Majority of material found within 1974-1976


Language of Materials

Materials in Vietnamese, English, and Cantonese.

Conditions Governing Access

Open for public research.

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to publish material from Santry Elmer papers must be obtained from the Supervisor of Reference Services and/or the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Coordinating Committee.

Biographical History

Santry Elmer (1955-2018) was a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Vietnam during the end of the Vietnam War.

Derrell Santry Elmer was born in Safford, Arizona on April 28, 1955, to Lawrence Derrell Elmer and Jacquelyn Jean Leonard. He graduated from Duncan High School in 1973. He served as a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from 1974-1976. He was assigned to labor in Vietnam, which was part of the Hong Kong mission at the time. He served there with several other missionaries until April 1975, when they were evacuated due to the fall of South Vietnam to North Vietnam. He then served temporarily in Hong Kong until he was reassigned to the California Anaheim mission, where he worked with Vietnamese refugees who were living at a camp in the area. Elmer worked in business and management during his lifetime, including for Paragon Cable, Ballet Arizona, and the International Foundation for Education and Self-Help (IFESH). He died March 21, 2018.


2 boxes (1 linear ft.)

Custodial History

Purchased by curator John Murphy from Confetti Antiques, September 6, 2018.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchased; Confetti Antiques; September 6, 2018.


Utah and the American West and LDS cultural, social, and religious history (20th and 21st Century Western and Mormon Americana Collection development policy 5.IV).

Processing Information

Processed; Brynne Karlinsey; August 2019.

Register of Santry Elmer papers
2019 August 5
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English in Latin script.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States