Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Milton Christian Petersen

Milton C. Petersen passed away peacefully on Tuesday, April 24, 2012, at Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare- All Saints, just four months shy of his 97th birthday.

He was born in Racine on September 5, 1915, to the late Nels and Lily (nee: Anderson) Petersen. On September 16, 1939, he was united in marriage to Anna Marie “Becky” (nee: Beck) at Messiah Lutheran Church. They spent nearly 65 years together until she preceded him in death on January 18, 2004.

Milton was employed by Modine Manufacturing Company beginning in 1935. He served as a draftsman for 25 years before being promoted to Supervisor of the Drafting Department for over 20 years until his retirement in 1980. During WWII, Modine wrote the draft board to explain that Milton would best serve his country by remaining a draftsman at home. However, he did regret not being able to join his brothers in arms on the battlefield. After his retirement, he attended the Modine 20-year club and continued to do so until his passing.

Milton was a lifetime member of Our Savior's Lutheran Church where he served as a member of the church council, deacon, Sunday school teacher, led numerous Bible classes, and continued a tradition of leadership well into his 90's when he served as a youth mentor to confirmation students. He also taped every Sunday sermon and personally delivered the tapes to shut-ins from 1962 to 1998. Milton began singing at age 5 as a member of the Petersen Brothers Trio, where he sang and performed with his brothers for various groups at school and church. He belonged to the Our Savior's Lutheran Choir for 60 years, from age 20 to 80, the Modine Men’s Choir and the Midwestern Male Chorus. He also belonged to the Racine Churchmen’s Club. He was a master gardener of flowers, vegetables, fruit trees and berry bushes, a talent he learned as a child, where he grew up and lived on nine different farms and three houses all over Racine County.

Active to his last day, Milton loved to golf and fish, enjoyed bowling as a member of the church bowling league, and loved to travel extensively throughout the United States and abroad. He was also an active member of the Racine Athletic Club until the day he passed away. But most all, people will remember Milton as a distinguished gentleman, who was always friendly and positive to everyone he met.

He is survived by a daughter and son-in-law, Becky and Rev. Dr. Robert Mortvedt; granddaughter, Clare (Jeff) Swenson; two great-grandsons, Nate and Nick Swenson; great-great-granddaughter, Jayme Swenson; grandson, Jake (Karen) Mortvedt; three granddaughters, Steffane, Katelynn and Delaynna; one grandson, Skyllar; two sisters, Doris Hanson and Eloise (Lowell) Yena; one brother, Elmer Petersen; as well as many nieces, nephews, other relatives and numerous friends. He was preceded in death by his wife, Marie “Becky”; sister, Vernetta Ness; and two brothers, Donald and Marvin Petersen.

A Celebration of Milton’s life will be held at Our Savior's Lutheran Church, 2219 Washington Ave., on Saturday, April 28, 2012, at 11 a.m. with Rev. Ronald Ballew officiating. Relatives and friends are invited to meet the family on Saturday at church from 9 a.m. until the time of service. Private interment will be held at West Lawn Memorial Park. Memorials may be directed to Neighborhood Ministries of Our Savior's Lutheran Church and/or to Habitat for Humanity.

Wilson Funeral Home
1212 Lathrop Ave., Racine  262-634-3361

No comments: