David E. Peterson, 77

David Peterson

David E. Peterson, 77, of Northwood passed away peacefully on Sunday, August 11, 2019 at St. Mary’s Hospital in Rochester.

A funeral service will be held 1:30 pm Saturday, August 24, 2019  at Emmanuel Lutheran Church, 308 4th Ave, Grafton, IA 50440 with Rev. Barbara Wills of Peace Lutheran Church in Northwood officiating. Burial will be at a later date.

Visitation and public viewing will be 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Conner Colonial Chapel, 1008 1st Ave S., Northwood, IA 50459. Visitation will continue one hour prior to the funeral at the church.

David Elmer Peterson was born February 25, 1942 in Watertown, SD, the son of Elmer J. and Cora (Eidem) Peterson. He was baptized at Zoar Lutheran in SD, the church founded by his Grandfather John Eidem, who emigrated from Norway.   Growing up in Tracy, Minnesota, David was confirmed at Tracy Lutheran and graduated in 1960. He was a hardworking boy scout, achieving the rank of Eagle Scout,  earned the Pro Deo Et Patria award (For God and Country) and was selected as Outstanding Scout in the Sioux Council.   Furthering his education, David continued at Augustana College in Sioux Falls, SD, graduating with majors in Math and Physics in 1966.  David’s love of and prowess singing earned him a place in the Augustana Choir, giving him the opportunity to perform across the United States (including Carnegie Hall in New York City and Constitution Hall in Philadelphia, PA) and Europe, including a performance for the King of Norway.   In the middle of his college career, David became engaged and married to his high school sweetheart, Geraldine Pixler (also from Tracy, MN).  They were married on December 28, 1963 at Tracy Lutheran Church, Tracy, MN.   To this union, God graced them with two sons, Eric and Chris.   The family made their home in Northwood, IA where David lived out his calling as a high school math and science teacher.    Here he spent 35 years doing what he loved, teaching the many students of the Northwood-Kensett Community School District.  Summers brought him to work in the construction business many years for B&K Lumber and later for Northland Construction.  The enjoyment of camping was also, part of their lives.   In the late summer and fall David continued this teaching on the football field as the Assistant Football coach for 24 years.  One of his fondest activities was coaching the offensive and defensive lines for the NKHS football teams.  He also spent many years as yearbook advisor at NK.    He retired in 2001.   

One of David’s passions was working with the Church especially in the area of worship.   He lived and celebrated his faith by serving God and the Church the best way he knew how – teaching, leadership roles, and choir and was actively involved with the congregation at Peace from its beginning.  He loved helping and serving others.

David could often be found working outside with his hands and with his foot to the spade, tending to the flowers and gardening.  This became a beloved pastime.  He grieved deeply the loss of his ability to do this in his later years.   Peace came behind the wheel of a car or truck.   David earned his CDL after his retirement, an accomplishment he had dreamed of for many years, and this took him over much of the state.   Moments in the truck, traveling through the Iowa countryside, being surrounded by classical music were moments he treasured.   He loved driving his family around and driving the bus for school activities.  David was a proud Norwegian and time spent learning about the ancestry of his family and celebrating the culture were some of his happiest.   When his son, Eric, married a Norwegian in Norway it allowed David and Geraldine time to spend in this beloved country of his heritage.  He was overjoyed to present many slide show programs of Norway of experiences from these trips.

He loved to sing and with his numerous years of practice in his college choir and numerous years of church choir, he was not shy with his voice.  Most of all, David loved all of his family deeply.   He was a dedicated and encouraging husband, father, and grandfather who best showed his love through his actions.

Those left to cherish his memory include his beloved wife of 55 years, Geraldine; his sons, Eric (Lise) Peterson of Stavanger, Norway and Chris (Dee) Peterson of Centennial, CO; grandchildren, Julian and Aurora Peterson, Stavanger, Norway and Cassidy (Katrina) Curtis of Littleton, CO; his sisters, Corinne Grove of Phoenix, AZ and Connie (Jesse Oxendine) Peterson of Anchorage, AK; as well as many extended family members and numerous friends made over the years.

Those welcoming him into heaven are his parents, Elmer and Cora; and a brother, Dennis Peterson.