Fern Wilhelmina Peterson, 92, passed away on Thursday, January 27th, 2011 at Kennedy Park Medical and Rehabilitation Center in Schofield, WI. Fern had been a resident of Kennedy Park for the past 8 years.
Fern was born on October 28, 1918, in Hayti, South Dakota, to Peter and Amanda (Johnson) Anderson. As a young woman, she moved to Detroit, MI, and met her husband, Herman J. Peterson. When Herman was stationed overseas during World War II, Fern assembled spark plugs in a Detroit factory to keep the army planes flying high.
After Herman's discharge from the Army, Fern and Herman moved to Hayti, South Dakota and owned a small farm. They then relocated to Ontonagon, Michigan, in 1952. Fern was a stay-at-home mom. Every summer, she always had huge vegetable gardens and raspberry patches and sold fresh produce at her residence on US 45.
Upon Herman's death in 1981, Fern attended the Ontonagon Area Community School programs. At the age of 66, she received her high school diploma. She was active in the VFW Ladies Auxiliary, Ontonagon Senior Citizen Center, and Redeemer Free Lutheran Church. Due to health issues, Fern moved to the Wausau area in 2001.
Fern is survived by two daughters, Elsa (Hank) Swenson, Rothschild, WI, and Marie (Terry) Barnett, Mosinee, WI. She was most proud of her three grandchildren, Terry J. Barnett, Katie (Nic) Habeck, and Joshua (Katelyn Sleeter) Swenson. Fern also has one great grandson, Ayden Barnett and a soon-to-be great granddaughter. One sister, Margaret Ferguson, currently resides in Livonia, MI.
Fern was preceded in death by her husband, Herman, daughter, Martha Ann and her parents, Peter & Amanda Anderson. Seven of Fern's siblings, Lillian, Helen, Gertrude, Edwin, Clarence, Ernest and Wendell also preceded her in death.
Funeral services for Fern will be 2 p.m. Monday, January 31, 2011 at the Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home, Sixth Street, Wausau. Friends may call on Monday from 11:00 a.m. until the time of services at the Sixth Street funeral home. Fern will be buried at the Riverside Cemetery Ontonagon, MI in the spring.
The family wishes to extend their sincere appreciation to the staff at Kennedy Park for the care given to Fern.