Albert 'Gene' Peterson
STURGIS - Albert "Gene" Peterson, 81, Sturgis, passed from this life Sunday, March 11, 2012, at the Sturgis Regional Senior Care Center. Gene's last years were complicated by Alzheimer's disease, but he now has victory and can pursue all things he had planned for retirement.
Gene was born Oct. 6, 1930, to Carl A. and Doris M. (DeWitt) Peterson. He lived his childhood on a farm and ranch at Folsom, S.D. Gene graduated from Rapid City High School in 1950, excelling with the track team, breaking low-hurdle records. In 1951 Gene enlisted in the United States Navy serving in California, and carriers USS Lake Champlain and USS Hornet. Upon his discharge in 1954, Gene returned to Rapid City and married Joan Martinson on Aug. 14, 1955. They celebrated 56 plus years together.
Gene enrolled at South Dakota School of Mines & Technology in the fall of 1957 taking advantage of the tuition provided to veterans. He graduated in 1961 with a degree in Civil Engineering and began his 33-year career with South Dakota Department of Transportation. He worked on building Interstate 90 from Rapid City to the Wyoming border with offices in Rapid City and Sturgis. Upon completion of the Interstate, he served as an area engineer retiring from the Belle Fourche office. Gene had a great passion for golf and the Boulder Canyon Country Club. Gene looked forward to deer hunting in the fall with his Dad and relatives and reliving stories from "buck camp." Gene pursued all sports with enthusiasm and enjoyed his winter skiing and bowling.
Gene is survived by his wife, Joan Peterson, Sturgis; son, Eric John Peterson, Sturgis; sister, Elaine Barber, Rapid City; and brother-in-law, Ralph Rogers, Rapid City.
He was preceded in death by his parents, and sister, Alice Rogers.
Memorial services will be at 10 a.m. Thursday, March 15, at the First United Methodist Church in Sturgis, with Pastor Jenene Earl officiating. Committal services, with military honors, will follow at Black Hills National Cemetery near Sturgis.
Memorials have been established for the building funds of the South Dakota School of Mines and the First United Methodist Church of Sturgis.
Condolences may be sent to the family at www.kinkadefunerals.com
Published by Rapid City Journal on Mar. 13, 2012.