Peter "Pedro" Spiller
1943 - 2020
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Peter "Pedro" Spiller
Peter "Pedro" Spiller,"77, of St. Augustine, Florida, passed away May 30 at Flagler Hospital.
Peter was born in New York City to Clifford and Geraldine Spiller, who predeceased him.
Peter is survived by his wife of 34 years, Debbie. Also surviving are sons Alex (Robin) and Peter Spiller, Jeremy Lee (Danyelle), daughter Jennifer Lee-Abascal (David) and 10 beautiful grandchildren; his sisters Jill, Susan and Nancy.
Peter was a dedicated professional. During his 30 years with Maersk Shipping, he was instrumental in the introduction of containerization and ultimately became the President of Maersk Venezuela. During his long career Peter also served as an executive for the Grand Bahama Port Authority and started the Florida Ship Owner's Association. Peter has lived in New York, New Jersey, Denmark, the Bahamas, Venezuela, and ultimately settled in Saint Augustine, Florida with his loving wife Debbie.
After Peter left the Hun School of Princeton he attended Wesleyan University, Middletown Connecticut graduating with honors in a BA in Economics, History and Government. From there attended Columbia University in New York City and received a Masters of International Affairs specializing in Latin America. He also received his Advanced Professional Certificate and Corporate Financial Management- NYU's core MBA program. Peter also taught economics at the Florida State University in Tallahassee.
Peter was very involved in his community and enjoyed volunteering for the Saint Augustine Lighthouse and Maritime Museum, where he served on the board; he was chairman for two years.
Peter and wife were strong supporters of EMMA Concert association and the St. Augustine Art Association.
Peter was a regular contributor to the St. Augustine Record where many enjoyed his insightful opinions.
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Near and dear to Peters heart was camp Wabun, located in the Temagami region of Canada. Where he spent his childhood summers canoe paddling. He later became one of the most beloved guides where he did over 1000 miles of paddling trips with the campers. In later years he very enthusiastically sent several grandchildren there for the summer. Peter and his friend Jon continued their exploration through Canada for many years each summer, for weeks at a time, canoeing and camping.
In 2006 Peter's thirst for adventure took him to Juliana Top in Suriname. Peter was part of the Juliana Top Expedition, who were the first people of European decent to successfully scale Suriname's highest peak, Juliana Top.
In addition to battling Polio as a child Peter was also a recent cancer survivor.
In his leisure time Peter very much enjoyed his paddling group and was an avid marathon and race runner. Competing in the Costal Challenge in Costa Rica for many years.
Peter and Debbie have been active members of Ancient City Baptist Church in Saint Augustine for 20 years.
Friends and family will always remember Peter best for his kind and playful sense of humor, his brilliant mind, selflessness, generosity and strong Christian faith.
A private service will be held at Ancient City Baptist Church. A YouTube Live Stream will also be available at 11 am Friday June 5th.
Search YouTube Ancient City Baptist Church

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in St. Augustine Record from Jun. 3 to Jun. 4, 2020.
Memories & Condolences
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18 entries
October 3, 2020
We just read the sad news of Peter's passing. Please accept our sincere and heartfelt condolences at this most difficult times and pleas pass these feeling on to your family. We remember, although we were competitors, the fine social visits we had during our time in Venezuela and cherish the painting you did for us on a small tea table.
Jim & Marisol Munion
Friend
August 14, 2020
Bon voyage my dear friend Peter! Although you've left a gaping hole in the hearts of many you've left behind, you've completed your journey and are resting comfortably as you gently paddle the pristine heavenly streams! You were intelligent, accomplished, and kind to everyone you met. You'll be missed by all. Love from Leigh and me.
Ron Howes
Friend
August 12, 2020
I met Peter 15 years ago in St. Augustine as we are both part of the local running community. My wife, Renee' and I shared many Great memories over the years with Peter and Debbie. He was a GREAT man and a Wonderful friend. We miss him every day.
Jim Wauldron
Friend
July 16, 2020
Met Pedro at Coastal Challenge. Told me to keep my shoes IN my tent. I laughed but did. Someone didn't and wound up stepping into a spiders new set up and couldn't walk for a day. Peter was a true man of wisdom.
Mark Matyazic
Friend
June 18, 2020
Peter was a wonderful classmate in the 3 major program at Wesleyan. Always friendly, never at a loss for a little humor in discussions, smart as the dickens. I really liked him, and so did so many of us.
David Griffith
Classmate
June 10, 2020
I worked at Maersk for 29 years in New York, Port Newark, NJ and Madison, New Jersey. Peter was a part of all of those years and I had a great relationship with him. He was a kind man and very seldom...if ever...did I hear him say anything derogatory about anyone. I can vividly remember my first business trip out of town, when I visited the Philadelphia Agency probably in the year 1973. Peter was manager and went out of his way to make me comfortable and provide me with the benefit of his shipping expertise as it related to my specialty in cargo claims. I never forgot that visit or my wonderful dinner that night at a great restaurant with Peter. In closing I want to say this......in this world we meet many men and women who are outstanding executives. Peter was in this category ,but he was very much more. He was a warm human being, in a business that did not generate many warm human beings. I exchanged an email with Peter only a short time ago..in April.. when we talked about the passing of Ole Caroe. Once again, Peters words were kind and positive about one of our former colleagues. I will miss Peter and I send my condolences to his wife and family and friends and I pray he may Rest In Peace.
Ronald Griebell
Coworker
June 6, 2020
Peter was a founding member of our ultra-running community. His stories in camp after stages of The Costal Challenge inspired me to explore the world and push my limits. Pedro, you will be missed
Dave James
Friend
June 5, 2020
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Andrew Kleinfeld
June 5, 2020
My deepest condolences. Pedro will be missed by many, I will always remember is positive attitude towards life and his desire to enjoy it to the maximum.
He raced several years at The Coastal Challenge in Costa Rica which I organize and direct.
He will be missed but well remembered.

Rodrigo Carazo
Friend in adventure
Rodrigo Carazo
Friend
June 5, 2020
long time business associate and friend, you'll be missed.
Gary Ferrulli
June 4, 2020
My sincere sympathy. I always enjoyed Peter's insightful contributions to The Record.
Anne Heymen
Friend
June 4, 2020
My deepest sympathy to Debbie and family. I treasure the tea set you handpainted, and I think of you and your family often. I always read Peter's contributions to The Record with great interest.
Anne Heymen
June 4, 2020
Pedro, you will be sorely missed... the daily exchange of emails, our common political views, your wisdom on climate change, your great sense of humor. What I'll remember most is the many miles we ran together through the beautiful country of Costa Rica. Thank you most of all for your friendship, Amigo. Jay Norman
Jay Norman
Friend
June 3, 2020
To a wonderful, thoughtful and generous man who left a lasting impression on my life. I owe a debt of gratitude to Peter for the confidence he exhibited in me when he passed the torch upon his retirement from the Florida Shipowners Group. I will be forever grateful.
Rest In Peace my friend.
Joe Espinosa
Joe Espinosa
Coworker
June 3, 2020
Rest In Peace Peter. So happy we had a good chat 10 days ago and you were so upbeat doing long walks, and getting your strength ready for another adventure or run. What a shock to receive a call of your sudden passing. You will leave with us your great stories, your fun humor and your good insights. Thank you for all you did in shipping for those of us that had the fortune to see your handiwork. A True gentlemen Warrior To the end. God bless you my friend.
Rick Murrell
Rick Murrell
Coworker
June 3, 2020
May your hearts soon be filled with wonderful memories of joyful times together as you celebrate a life well lived.
Gayle Phillips
Friend
June 3, 2020
May you rest in peace Peter - knowing that you had inspired us all to be kinder & helpful to those in need, more patience & determination in facing/overcoming challenges, more inquisitive to everything around us, more appreciative of everyone, and seeing the beauty of the world!!!
It had been my honor to have know you, to have you as a mentor, and to have you as a dear friend! Salute to a true gentleman and a life well lived!
Until we meet again...
Patrical
Patrical Leung
Friend
June 3, 2020
Say not in grief: "He is no more", but live in thankfulness that he was. We will all miss Peter very much....my heart today is with Debbie. So many accomplishments, a wealth of hopes and dreams fulfilled, so many days well-lived and now a legacy to celebrate. I remember especially his love of our Lighthouse and Museum and I can't help but see the similar traits. Peter at 77 years young was strong and quiet, but firm in his resolve...his inner light shined with dignity and his eyes with love. Thank you for always guiding our Board with your wisdom...We will still look up to you! His love of life (living it with gusto) and compassion endeared him to me. The Bible reminds us that "Blessed are those that mourn for they shall be comforted." I pray that this will be especially true for those who loved him. The celebration of Peter's life will hopefully help all of us to grieve, heal and go on as he would want us to. Fair winds and following seas my friend, Judy Burnett Albright
Judy Burnett Albright
Friend
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