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Hans Petersen

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Hans Petersen Obituary
Petersen, Hans G.

"The Chicken Man"

Endwell: 86, passed away peacefully on July 1, 2011 at Bridgewater Nursing Home in Binghamton, NY. Hans is predeceased by his mother and father, Maria and Jacob Petersen, his brothers Herman and Paul, and his sister Marga Petersen. He is survived by the love of his life, his wife of almost 59 years, Janice Petersen. He is also survived by his sister, Carla Butler of Long Island, NY, daughter Gayle Petersen, Endwell, NY, son, Richard Petersen (Jane), Portland, ME, daughter Debi Petersen-Moore, Ithaca NY, and seven nieces and nephews. Hans was blessed with four grandchildren whom he adored, and who loved him dearly: granddaughter Kristina Moore, Ithaca, NY, granddaughter Meredith Petersen, Portland ME, granddaughter Ashley Moore, Ithaca NY, and grandson Hayden Petersen, Boulder CO. He imbued in all his children an understanding of the importance of integrity, honor, honesty, loyalty, courtesy, consideration for others, and a strong work ethic. They will always be grateful for his example as those values have served them well in navigating their own lives.Hans was born in Husum, Germany on April 25, 1925 and immigrated to New York City with his family in 1928. It was in New York City he fell in love with 'the girl next door'. He was a member of the "Greatest Generation". He joined the Coast Guard, part of the Navy at that time, at the age of 17 to serve his country as a Machinist Mate 3C serving aboard two ships from 1943 - 1946. He also served in the USAF from 1951 - 1953, and retired with rank of Major from the USAF reserves. Hans returned from his active duty and enrolled in Syracuse University where he earned his degree in engineering; a member of his graduating class of 1951 was none other than Dick Clark. He moved his family from New York City to Endicott, NY in the fall of 1957 when he accepted a position in IBM Endicott. He was a Staff Engineer in Cost Engineering and a loyal 'IBMer" for 25 years. Hans placed his priorities in the following order: family first, followed by love for his country, then friends and last but certainly not least, Binghamton hockey. He fell in love with hockey in NYC in 1938, beginning his journey as a life long fan of the NY Rangers. It gave him great joy to see them win the Stanley Cup in 1994. His love of Binghamton hockey began in 1973, when he and his wife Janice were among the first season ticket holders of the Broome Dusters. Hans was a reserved man until he sat in his seat at the arena. One day he brought a rubber chicken with a rope around its neck to a game and hung it over the glass after a player on the opposing team took a cheap shot at one of the Dusters. It was at that moment he became 'The Chicken Man', and the rest is history. Over the years he had several personas as the hockey clubs changed - Chicken Man, The Old Ranger, The Ancient Mariner, and The Old Gladiator. He was a strong believer in supporting your team, win or lose. It was unfortunate that after supporting his teams and waiting 38 years, he was unable to attend the playoffs during the season that brought home the Calder Cup. However, it gave him great joy to know that they'd won, and the Binghamton Senators brought the Calder Cup to him at Bridgewater for a photo. His journey with Binghamton hockey was now complete. Our family will always be grateful for this act of kindness. A few years ago, the 'Lifetime Fan Award' was created in his name, and he was the first to receive that honor, of which he was most proud. We know that not only his family and friends will miss Hans, but so will the fans of Binghamton hockey. If there is a hockey team in heaven, he will be preparing for his new role as a loyal super fan. His entire family would like to acknowledge the wonderful and compassionate care provided by his cardiologist, Dr. Nasiruddin Jamal, for over 30 years, as well as his primary physician, Dr. David Zander. Hans' final 6 months of life were spent as a resident of Bridgewater Nursing Home, where he touched the lives of residents and staff alike. The care and genuine love he received while there will never be forgotten. To the staff that became part of our family on the second floor, there are no words to thank you enough for all you provided to Hans and his family. He treasured the small photo album he kept of you all, entitled 'My Bridgewater Family' and we know he loved you all very much, as do we. The family will receive friends at the Barber Memorial Home, Inc. 428 Main St., Johnson City, Sunday July 3rd from 2 - 5PM. Private burial with military honors will be held on Tuesday, July 5th, at Calvary Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to: , PO Box 3049, Syracuse, NY 13220

Published in Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin from July 2 to July 4, 2011
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