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Obituary, Bud (Robert William) Peterson, 90


Bud Peterson

Bud (Robert William) Peterson passed away peacefully after a brief stay in a nursing home in Anchorage, Alaska.

Bud was born April 24, 1924 in St. Paul, Minn. to Hilma and Oscar Peterson. He was the youngest of six children. When very young, his family moved to Florida, then settled in the Oswego Lake area in Oregon. His love of fishing started about that time.

Bud enlisted in the army his senior year of high school receiving the equivalent of a diploma so that he could start his army career in February of 1943. He was a Technician Fifth Grade, switchboard operator, phone lineman and rifle expert. He landed on Normandy, D-Day plus 20, and shortly after was wounded.

For his heroism in the line of duty he received a Bronze Campaign Star, a Good Conduct Ribbon, a Purple Heart, and a European African Middle Eastern Theatre Ribbon.

After being wounded, while stateside for rehab, he met Helen Keller who was giving the fallen soldiers a pep talk. It must've worked, because when he was about to be discharged, he re-enlisted, going back to Europe to tour the field hospitals with his new prosthetic leg. He showed the newly wounded soldiers that life wasn't over.

He was honorably discharged in September 1945. He bought his folks a car, then headed to Alaska, to visit his sister, Anne (Jim) Leekley, where he stayed.

He got a job as a laborer at the Experimental Fur Farm in Petersburg where Jim Leekley was the veterinarian for the University of Alaska and in charge of the farm.

Bud bought a homesite with a three-room tar paper shack on it. He married Judy Allen in June of 1954, and a little more than a year later their son David was born. 

He retired from the Fur Farm in the early 70s and went fishing on seiners and gillnetters. From the late 80s to the 90s he took to hand-trolling.

Bud kept people (many of them elderly, who couldn't go get their own) supplied in fish, shrimp, clams, crab, berries, goose-tongue, fire wood, and even seaweed for the garden. He'd share the bounty of his garden with many.

He was Uncle Bud to a good portion of the town, and was quick with a joke.

In 1997 Bud stopped driving due to diminishing vision that could not be corrected.  He called daughter-in-law Kelly his "seein' eye puppy." She also learned how to run the skiff so they could go fishing.

In recent years Bud enjoyed his great-grandkids and would even walk them around on his walker.

He is preceded in death, by his parents, siblings; wife, Judy; grandson, Matthew Scott; and granddaughter Jessica Jean.

He is survived by his son, David (Kelly) of Petersburg; foster daughter Roseann (David) Dyakinoff of Ketchikan, Alaska; granddaughter, Grace (Eric) Wolf of North Bend, Ore.; granddaughter, Marie (Bert) Dersham of Anchorage, Alaska; foster granddaughter, Genia Smith of Ketchikan; great-grandchildren Aurora and Molly Wolf, and Connor and Matilda Dersham, and numerous nephews and nieces.

Bud was given a send-off of his choosing, his ashes resting in the waters directly in front of his home, the land that he loved profoundly.


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