An ousted member of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints — who was once favored by many in the polygamist community to take over as prophet — died Monday, banished from his home and reportedly brokenhearted.
Louis Barlow, who purportedly had seven or eight wives and about 60 children, had been expelled from the FLDS Church in January. Some who knew Barlow say he had a heart ailment that required medication.
They also said the stress of the past five months took its toll. Within the past month, Barlow’s wives apparently had been reassigned to other men by FLDS church leader Warren Jeffs.
Barlow and three brothers — who were among 21 men Jeffs had exiled from the community on Jan. 10 — had been living in Bloomington, a suburb of St. George.
“In my opinion, he died of a broken heart,” said Richard Holm, who knew Barlow well and was ousted himself in November 2003. “I heard he had made comments last week that he had nothing to live for. He was one of the patriarchs of the community, a very decent man.”
Barlow, who was about 80, was the oldest living son of John Y. Barlow, a former FLDS prophet. After the mass excommunications, an anonymous letter circulated in the sister cities of Hildale, Utah, and Colorado City, Ariz., where most support polygamy as a religious tenet, telling of a supposed revelation that Louis should be leader.