Gary Leonard Peterson passed away from complications of leukemia at age 85 on Sunday, November 1, 2020 at home in Meridian, Idaho.
He was born May 20, 1935 in Dee Hospital, Ogden, Weber, Utah to Peter Leonard Peterson and Theo Carver both of whom are deceased. His siblings are Joyce Peterson Rich (deceased), Barbara Peterson Mickelson, Kathy Lynn Peterson Schmedding and Elwyn Peterson.
After his mother Theo passed away a few weeks after the birth of Elwyn, Leonard married Myrtle Nielson Jardine. Her children Velma and Clyde Jardine joined the family. Later Kathy Lynn was born creating a yours, mine and ours family. A loving and talented woman, Myrtle became the only grandmother Gary’s children have known.
Gary was grateful for being raised on a farm and the work ethic he learned. But his interests lay in Speech Communication and working with people in their communication problem solving. He began his teaching at the University of Washington [Seattle, Washington] later at Brigham Young University [Provo, Utah]. His final teaching years took place at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Washington. He was a dedicated professor who loved teaching. As a result, several his students have kept in touch with him over the years to share their Communication professions growth and their personal lives.
Aside from teaching, he was an ardent sports fan following baseball, basketball, and football in particular. He also enriched his community as a Rotarian and active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Gary attended Taylor Elementary and Junior High. He graduated from Weber High School in Ogden, Utah. He also graduated from Weber College, University of Utah and earned his doctorate at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio. He served six months active duty in the Army and six years with an active reserve unit.
Gary and UnaJean West were married 27 June 1958 in the LDS Salt Lake City Temple. They have five children: Andra Luna Peterson, Calene Peterson Borup, Randall Glenn Peterson, Bradford Gary Peterson and Erik Leonard Peterson. Fourteen grandchildren and 3 great grandchildren have joined the family.
Gary leaves the legacy of his father’s trait as a kind, gentle, fair and loving person, not given to anger easily. He was a punster, fun-loving and playful. We thank him for being our example for happiness.
Private funeral services will be held under the direction of Bowman Funeral Directors at 2 pm, Thursday, November 5, 2020. To watch the service please go to the following https://1drv.ms/v/s!AjjH6R2z65IesyhVO45YsiqEAnm-?e=pUQeF4 , Burial will take place at 2 pm Friday, November 6, 2020 at Mountain View cemetery in Eden Utah. Condolences may be left for the family at www.bowmanfuneral.com
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Debra Gessel saysNovember 3, 2020 at 7:59 pm
Gary and Debbie Gessel love Gary and Una Jean Peterson! We were so shocked to learn that he was diagnosed with leukemia, and shocked that he passed away so soon afterwards. His legacy will long outlive him in the University Place area. All those who were in his ward when he was bishop and were his friends hold his memory dear. He is such a good man! He was a true disciple of Christ and exemplified his attributes. We pray for your family!
Dale and La Rita Chugg saysNovember 4, 2020 at 9:23 am
Dear Una and family, What a great person, husband and father you have. From the time we first knew Gary, it was well know in Taylor of his gentle, kind and spiritual ways. It was a pleasure to have been able to spend teenage years being around Gary in high school and college. I knew that Una and Gary were to be together forever!
Our deepest sympathy to you and all of your family. He will be missed. Dale and La Rita Holley Chugg
Chris Bergmark saysNovember 4, 2020 at 5:09 pm
Dear Una and family, I am so sorry to hear about the passing of Gary. I will always have fond memories of my time in the Family and Church History Mission which he played a huge part. I was thinking yesterday how much fun I had there and enjoyed remembering the various socials and reunions where the Elders and Elderly Brothers participated. I will always be grateful to him for giving me those opportunities. He was and is still a great man! I will miss him. Sincerely, Chris Bergmark
Claudia Jardine McNair saysNovember 8, 2020 at 11:50 am
Dear Una Jean and family, Kathryn Lynn, Elwin, and Barbara and families, Sorry to read about Gary’s passing. Some of the best years of my childhood was being the Peterson’s next door neighbor on our Taylor farms. I loved your large family, although I was always confused about how the Jardine part fit in, despite Myrtle explaining it to me more than once. Gary was always the good-natured, easy-going big brother. Kathy and Elwin, remember the Cat Trick show you produced in your garage? Gary laughed the loudest and asked for a repeat performance. Part of the fun was walking down the road with Gary and everyone to bring the cows up from the pasture for milking. Gary and his love, laughter, and kindness greatly enriched my childhood. My sympathy and condolences for your loss.
Julie (Prochaska) Gilbert saysFebruary 11, 2021 at 9:40 pm
I just read Gary’s “In Memoriam” in the Winter 2021 the University of Puget Sound’s Arches magazine and I am so saddened to hear of his passing. Gary was one of my favorite teachers ever. He was so passionate about education and his students, and I learned so much from him. As a student of his at the University of Puget Sound, it was absolutely apparent how much he enjoyed teaching… and being around that, it was impossible not to enjoy learning. After reading about Gary, I learned something I never knew and wish I had known while I was a student of his: he was from Meridian, Idaho, which is my home town. It would have been fun to have known that connection, though it brought me joy to know it now. My sympathy for your family’s loss. Gary was a great man and I am glad to have known him.