OBITUARY: Kenneth Carl ‘Pete’ Peterson, 70, Dies After Courageous Battle With GBM Brain Tumor

By  //  September 14, 2021

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Pete was aviation enthusiast, volunteered at Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum in Titusville

Kenneth Carl ‘Pete’ Peterson died on August 31, 2021, at his home in Melbourne, Florida after courageously battling a devastating GBM brain tumor.

BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – Kenneth Carl ‘Pete’ Peterson died on August 31, 2021, at his home in Melbourne, Florida after courageously battling a devastating GBM brain tumor.

Ken was born September 5, 1951, in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. to William O. Peterson and Jean Marie (Woodin) Peterson. He met the love of his life, Deb Schubin, while both were members of the Arlington, N.Y. Junior High Chorus, performing together at the 1964 World’s Fair.

Although they parted in 1970, Kismet reunited them on October 3, 1982. They married on May 16, 1986, and celebrated their 35th anniversary earlier this year.

In 2011 they joined Director John LaFalce, his former chorus members, and students in the Arlington Junior High School auditorium and joyously celebrated the 50th Anniversary of the Chorus.

A 1969 graduate of Arlington High School, Ken joined the U.S. Navy in February 1974, advancing to the rank of Petty Officer First Class as a Hull and Fire Fighting Technician.

His last naval assignment was aboard the USS Ranger (CVA-61) on a cruise from Alameda, Calif. to the Western Pacific in the winter and spring of 1976.

After discharge from the Navy, Ken joined his father at Poughkeepsie’s Western Publishing Company as a machinist.

In 1988, Ken, Deb, and daughter’s Keva and Kiera moved to Kent Lakes, New York. They were joined there in 1992-93 by their third daughter, Cristina Porto, an exchange student from Spain. While living in Kent Lakes, he worked for Polytemp and AMHAC as an HVAC Sales & Design Engineer, retiring in 2005.

Ken was passionate about flying in October 1982 he qualified as an ultra-light aircraft pilot and then in fixed-wing aircraft. He delighted in flying his family and friends down the Hudson River and around the Statue of Liberty.

In 2005, he fulfilled a life-long dream becoming certified as an AirFrames and Powerplants (A&P) Mechanic, with advanced degrees from Vaughn College of Aeronautics and Technology.

Ken took great pride in his work, volunteering at the Valiant Air Command’s Warbird Museum in Titusville, Fla., working with “Grummies” restoring World War II aircraft to flight status.

A gifted and skilled artisan with a great sense of humor, Ken enjoyed up-cycling antique wood and metal objects, turning them into Objects d’Art, many of which are highly prized by friends and admirers all over the world.

In preparation for retirement, Deb and Ken purchased a winter home in Melbourne, Fla., and a summer home in upstate New York’s Adirondack mountains (Schroon Lake). A master renovator, he turned a rustic cabin into a warm and cozy lake home. Ken and Deb’s life-long love of music continued after their retirement.

During the summers, they really enjoyed volunteering at the Schroon Lake Seagle Music Festival. In Florida, he loved assisting his wife and their many friends in the Platinum Show Chorus, a chapter of Sweet Adelines International.

Always generous with his time and knowledge, during retirement he also mentored or volunteered for: Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum, Schroon Lake Fish and Game Club, Schroon Lake Library, Schroon Lake Association, East Shore Schroon Lake Association, Seagle Festival & Guild, Space Coast Teacher Retirees in Florida, Experimental Aircraft Association, Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association and Health First Hospice of Melbourne.

Ken’s life of service continues as he has dedicated his body to medical research at the Central Florida School of Medicine, and has contributed his DNA to ongoing research into the genetic influences on disease.

Ken was predeceased by his parents William and Jean (Wooden) of Escanaba, Mich., and his sister, Jill Peterson West. He is survived by his wife, Deb, and two daughters, Keva Mosher, (Louis Diliberto); Kiera Mosher (Paul Ansbro); his brothers, Eric (Sandy Guenette) and David (Michelle) Peterson of Escanaba, Mich., as well as many nephews, nieces, cousins, and several ‘grandcats!’

A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, November 13 at the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum. Details to follow.

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