Phone: (906) 786-2142
400 S 10th St. - Escanaba, Michigan 49829
West 3755 US 2 - Spalding, Michigan 49886
Walter "Wallie" Ray Petersen
Date of Death: June, 06 2011

Walter "Wallie" Ray Petersen
, 83, Powers, passed away on Monday June 6, 2011 at Pinecrest Medical Care Facility. He was born on February 13, 1928 in Spalding on his family's farm to Ray and Casimere (Pongelak) Petersen. Wallie graduated from Powers Spalding H.S. in 1945 and studied at Michigan Tech and Michigan State.

He worked for Michigan Department of Transportation from 1955 until his retirement in 1990. He worked all across the U.P. starting his career and family in Munising and worked on many highway and bridge projects including the Mackinac bridge in the 1950s. He also logged more than 250,000 miles on the job from 1973-1980.

Wallie also found time in the evening with the help of his two sons, to sell and repair lawnmowers, tillers, chainsaws, snowmobiles, and was an authorized Ariens and Jonsered's dealer. He was elected to the Powers-Spalding school board in 1964 and remained on the board until 1987 serving as President, Vice President and Secretary. He was proud to present each of his children their high school diplomas during his tenure on the school board. He joined the Powers- Spalding Fire Department in 1959, becoming an honorary member in 1984; was a member of Powers-Spalding Lions Club and a member of UTEA, serving as Vice President of Chapter 2. He was a member of Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church, the Super Yoopers, Superior Sams RV clubs, SERA and was a bowler.

He married the former Anne T. Cass on June 18, 1955 at St. Joseph's Parish in Escanaba and together raised seven children. Wallie enjoyed reading, bowling, woodworking, camping, traveling throughout the U.S. and spending many winters in Arizona, Texas and Florida. He also fulfilled a lifetime dream of becoming a pilot at the age of 55 and flew as far as New York.

Wallie will be fondly remembered for his quiet wisdom and caring ways. Family was very important to him as he looked after his parents and aunts who lived to be centenarians and also raised his children to value an education. He was always there for his children and their families.

He is survived by his wife, five daughters: Pattie (Don) Heilala of Iron Mountain, Beth (Brian) Waitrovich of Kingsford, Susan (Mark) Lemke of New Franken, Ruth (Terry) Szapa of Green Bay and Anne (Jeff) Heino of Florence, two sons: Mark (Denice) Petersen of Menominee and Nick (Amy Petersen of Wilson, eighteen grandchildren: Andy, Adam and Alex Heilala, Jon and Ben Vish, Tom Waitrovich, Greg (Heather) Carr, Chris Carr, Sara (Justin) Lemerande, Katy, Jacob and Aaron Szapa, Emily Petersen, Abby, Jared and Samantha Heino and Mallory and Payton Petersen, four great-grandchildren, a special niece: Shelly Fazer as well as numerous other nieces and nephews.

Wallie was preceded in death by his parents and one brother: Grant Petersen.

Friends may call from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. (noon) (CST) on Thursday June 9, 2011 at the Allo Coolman Funeral Home in Spalding. A funeral service to celebrate Wallie Petersen's life will be at 12:30 p.m. (CST) on Thursday at Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church in Powers with Pastor Ronald Zindler officiating. Burial will be in the Spalding Township Cemetery. A luncheon will be held in the church fellowship hall.

In lieu of other expressions of sympathy, a memorial will be established and donations may be made to his family at this time.

Please visit to send online condolences to the Petersen family.

The Petersen family would like to extend a special thank you to the Dickinson County Hospital ACU nurses, Dr. Mahadev, Dr. Morrell and the DCH Med/Surg staff, the staff at Pinecrest and Pastor Zindler for all their kindness shown to Wallie during his time of illness.

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