John's Mission "Mom", President Godwin's wife Sister Godwin, sent us these photos recently. She described meeting John and the other missionaries as they arrived from the MTC a few weeks ago.
"It is a pleasure for us to write to you and tell you how much we have enjoyed meeting your son. He along with 11 other elders arrived safely here in California. I am sure you have had communication with your son and he has probably informed you of the events of that day. When we left the airport, we took all of the Elders to Glen Helen Park at the mouth of the Cajon Pass. Sister Mills and Brother Bacon, local historians, met us there and told us how the area had been settled. Jefferson Hunt, Captain of the U.S. Army Battalion was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (also called the Mormons) as was all the members of the battalion. Because of this they were called the Mormon Battalion and they were sent to guard the pass and protect it from marauding indians. After they were mustered out of their service in the Battalion, they returned to Salt Lake City to join their families. President Young, seeing southern California as a source of supply for the Utah pioneers and to establish a mail route and supply stop for immigrants coming through California, used church funds to buy property that was for sale by Antonio Maria Lugo, a Mexican rancher that had obtained a 35,000 acre grant after they won independence from Spain. Twenty families were asked to colonize the area. Fifteen former Battalion men and their families also went, including Captain Jefferson Hunt. The story of the settling the area here in San Bernardino was told in a story written by Sister Mills for the February, 2003 Ensign, if you are interested in reading more about it."
We hope this information will be helpful to you. Some of it may have been a retelling of the story for you, (actually we heard nothing about this) but hopefully you have learned something you didn't know before.
We are looking forward to working with your son in this most wonderful of experiences - preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the people in this area. There is a lot of diversity here. He will learn a lot about other cultures We know your son will be a fine missionary. He is a wonderful young man.
If you have any questions, please ask us anytime.