Duane Irwin “Pete” Peterson, 72, a former Halfway resident, died on Feb. 5, 2005, at Spokane Valley.
At his request there will be no viewing. There will be a Celebration of Life service at 2 p.m. Saturday at the Hazen and Jaeger Valley Funeral Home in the Spokane Valley. There will be a family reception/potluck afterward.
Pete was born in Halfway, Oregon on January 19, 1933 to Dick D. Peterson and Bessie I. Peterson Irwin. The gold rush days relocated Pete and his parents to Cornucopia, a small mining community close to Halfway, where his parents ran a store. They returned to Halfway in 1942. He was one of five to graduate from Pine Valley Union High School at Halfway in 1950.
While in high school, Pete participated in various activities including football, track, the Glee Club. He was in several plays and was the secretary of both his senior class and the Agricultural Club.
He went on to the University of Oregon at Eugene before entering the U.S. Navy. He served his country from Jan. 18, 1951, to January 18, 1954. He was discharged in Seattle, Wash., where he met his first wife, Viola Marie Anderson.
They were married on Feb. 18, 1954, at Baker City. They moved back to Halfway where Pete worked as a clerk in the U.S. Forest Service. He then went on to work on both the Brownlee and Hells Canyon dams near Halfway.
They then moved to Wenatchee, Wash., where he started as a fireman for the then Great Northern Railroad and on onto Spokane, Wash., where he later became an engineer. He retired from the Burlington Northern Railroad in 1995.
Pete had eight children from this marriage. He married Jo Mason in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, on Aug. 20, 1976. They had one child.
Pete was a lifetime member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and was an avid hunter and fisherman. In recent years you could find Pete on the lake, playing cards with his many friends or feeding his pet squirrels. He was loved and will be missed by all who knew him.
He was preceded in death by his parents, and children, Sherry Peterson, Dickie D. Peterson, Randy Peterson and Billie Joe Peterson.
Survivors include his wife, Jo; children, Robert Peterson and his wife, Donna, of Bend, Dawn West and her husband, Bob, Sandra Kaye Schaich, Richard Peterson and his wife, Tami, and Mary Baker and her husband, Dexter, all of Spokane, Wash.; 14 grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; and numerous relatives throughout the Pacific Northwest and Canada.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Ronald McDonald House at Spokane, Wash.
Used with permission from: Baker City Herald, Baker City, Oregon, February 11, 2005
Transcribed by: Belva Ticknor