Melvin Thomas “Pete” Petersen, 92, of Dickinson, passed away Thursday, February 28, 2019, at Cornerstone Hospital of Clear Lake. He was born August 21, 1926, in Yankton, South Dakota to Henry and Jenny Petersen. Pete grew up in Nebraska and joined the US Army Air Corps in 1944, where he served as the first non-commissioned officer member of the Court Marshall Board. At the end of World War II, he became an apprentice chef in his aunt and uncle’s hotel restaurant. This is where Pete’s lifelong love of food, cooking, and especially barbecuing began. In 1950, Pete was called back into active duty for the Korean War. During his service, Pete was a Mess Sargent in charge of 82 mess halls. He was proudly awarded a letter of commendation for having the best mess hall during IG inspection. After his discharge, Pete began a career in the construction industry, finally landing in Galveston, where he helped build the San Luis Pass bridge and then started Kelso Marine, where he remained until 1982. Pete also ran his own company, M & M Supply, since 1975, and started working at Malloy & Son Funeral Home in 1999. In 2010, Pete began working at Crowder Funeral Home. His last job began in 2016, when he became a member of the Arbitration Review Board for the Galveston County Tax Office.
In addition to his lifelong love of working, Pete loved girls’ softball and coached both daughters for over 10 years, touching the lives of all the girls he coached, while also supporting his son Roger in his many sports endeavors. Pete was active in many facets of his community. He was a longtime member of Trinity Lutheran Church of La Marque, where he served on the church council for many years. He then became a long-tenured member of Faith Lutheran Church in Dickinson, where he served as a deacon, a member of the church council and a Stephen Minister since 2000. Pete was a member of the Galveston Kiwanis Club, serving as President in 2002/2003, and was awarded the Hixon Award in 2001. He was a longtime member of the Propeller Club of Galveston and the Sons of Hermann, where he was awarded the Humanitarian of the Year Award in 2014.
Pete was always a natural “people” person. He loved to greet friends and strangers alike with a warm smile, a hug, and a cheery hello. Getting the family together was the only gift he ever asked for; family was number one to him. He will be remembered with love by all who knew him.
Pete is preceded in death by his wives, Mary Ann Petersen and Dottie Norris; brother, Bob Petersen; and grandson, Noah Gunhouse.
He is survived by his daughters, Sharon Bolen, Shelly Gunhouse and husband Ronald, and Cindy Balsam and husband Felix; sons, Roger Petersen and wife Virginia, Dale Henne, Robert Petersen and wife Brenda, and Richard Petersen and wife Luwanna; brother, Henry Petersen; former wife, Laura Petersen; former son-in-law, Chester Bolen; sister-in-law, Leona Petersen; 15 grandchildren; and numerous great grandchildren.
Pete’s family will receive visitors beginning at 6:00 pm, Friday, March 8, 2019, at Crowder Funeral Home in Dickinson, TX. A prayer service will begin at 7:00 pm.
Funeral service will begin at 11:00 am, Saturday, March 9, 2019, at Faith Lutheran Church in Dickinson, with a reception following.
Pallbearers will be Shaun Bolen, Kyle Bolen, Regan Gunhouse, Ron Gunhouse, Jeremy Kelley, and Chester Bolen. Honorary pallbearers will be Ron Hanson, Steve Price, Judge Lonnie Cox, Joshua Petersen, and Felix Balsam.
Memorials may be made to Faith Lutheran Church, the Ronald McDonald House of Galveston, or a hospice organization of your choice.
Date: Friday, March 8, 2019
Time: 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
A prayer service will begin at 7:00 pm.
Crowder Funeral Home – 851 FM 517 Rd. W – Dickinson, TX
Date: Saturday, March 9, 2019
Time: 11:00 am
Faith Lutheran Church – 800 FM 517 Rd. E. – Dickinson, TX