Gerald (Gerry) Peterson, of Thief River Falls, MN, passed away peacefully, surrounded by his family, on May 14, 2021, at Karlstad Senior Living Center, Karlstad, MN, at the age of 97.
A service to celebrate Gerry’s life will be held at 2:00 PM on Wednesday, May 19, 2021, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Thief River Falls, MN, with Rev. Terri Cuppett officiating. Burial will follow at the Viking Cemetery in Viking, MN.
Visitation will take place one hour prior to the funeral service on Wednesday at the church.
Gerald (Gerry) Howard Peterson was born on February 29, 1924, in Viking Township, the son of Charles (Charlie) Peterson and Hilda (Sustad) Peterson. He attended grade school at the Indian Trail School on the Pembina Ridge, then attended high school in Newfolden where he played football and baseball. He graduated from Newfolden High School in 1942.
On October 17, 1953, Gerry was united in marriage to Thelma June Skomedal at Nazareth Lutheran Church in Trail, MN. They lived on the family farm in Viking from 1953 and moved to Thief River Falls in 1969, where they have since resided.
Gerry hobby farmed turkeys, beef, and crops in Viking. He worked at Lakehead Pipeline for 15 years as a Journeyman Electrician, then worked at Arctic Cat Snowmobiles and Arctco for more than 30 years as a Licensed Class A Electrician. After retiring from Arctco in 1993, he and Thelma volunteered at The Heritage Senior Center for 25 years.
Gerry was a member of the Lutheran Social Service Senior Nutrition Board. In 2004, he received the Volunteer of the Year Award and in 2015, he was awarded 1st Place in the Volunteer Hall of Fame.
Gerry’s hobbies included woodworking, waterfowl hunting, snowmobiling, skiing, camping, fishing, golfing, and gardening. He was an avid deer hunter and just three years ago, at the age of 94, Gerry harvested a beautiful deer with one shot from 123 yards away.
Gerry was an active member of Trinity Lutheran Church, Fraternal Order of Eagles, MN Deer Hunters Association, and the Thief River Rifle Club.
Gerry is survived by his wife, Thelma Peterson; two children, Gary (Annette) Peterson of Thief River Falls, MN, and Kristy (Paul) Kelley of Mercer Island, WA; 7 grandchildren, Gabriel Peterson of Grand Forks, ND, Missi (Jeremy) Smith of Baxter, MN, Lindsay (Adam) Sjulestad of Goodridge, MN, Sam (Kayla) Kofstad of Thief River Falls, MN, Brittni Johnson of Thief River Falls, MN, Jackson Kelley of Bellevue, WA and Hannah Kelley of Mercer Island, WA; 7 great-grandchildren, Bryton and Blaine Kofstad, Crosby and Winnie Smith, Rosie, Sully, and Evie June Sjulestad; as well as several nieces, nephews, relatives, and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents and brothers, Lenold, Willard, Herbert, Ray, and Roy.
The family would like to thank the amazing staff at the Karlstad Senior Living Center for their wonderful care of Gerry in the last seven months. He was so happy there and loved them all.
Memorials suggested to the Heritage Senior Center in Thief River Falls, MN.