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Friday, November 20, 2015

52 Ancestors Year 2 #47: Walter Hudson Peterson, my Uncle Wally

     This week's prompt is to write about "Sports".  In my family there is very slim pickings in that category.  My husband's father and grandfather played baseball in College and my father played Basketball in High School but I have written about them (and my father would've thought it hilarious if I wrote about him in the category of sports!). Dennis' brother played baseball and football in High School and my father's brother played football in High School.  I also found a cousin who was on his High School Bowling team. Over 10,000 on my trees and this is about it in terms of sports! But I thought I'd write about my Uncle.

     Walter Hudson Peterson was born 1 Aug 1918 in San Antonio, Texas.  He was named Walter for his father, Walter Leonard Peterson, and Hudson for his mother, Elizabeth Hudson. (At least, I am assuming this as it seems logical). His father was employed by the US Army as a Physical Ed Instructor with YMCA. WW I was still in progress when he was born. The family moved to Fort Worth where his younger sister, Betty, and brother, John (Jack) were born.  The family moved to Detroit and then to Chicago where his father entered a Seminary and became a Presbyterian Minister. The first Church his father had was in Bessemer, Michigan. This is where Wally (as he was called by the family) went to High School.  And this is where the sports comes in! He played guard on the football team. After High School, Wally went to Ironwood Junior College where he again played guard on the football team.  This explains the photo I have of him wearing a helmet.  I believe that this is the football gear worn at that time. My father said of him, in his autobiography, "He was muscular, well coordinated and a tough he-man.  Playing guard in football is a rough, mud-biting, nose-grinding, and hard-knocking 'sport'...I imagine that he couldn't be pushed around.  He was held in respect by other boys...I think he had courage, but no chip on his shoulder."

     He married Grace Basket on 15 Sep 1938.  They had a long and loving marriage with three children of their own and one adopted child.  When WW II came he served in the Pacific in the Navy.
He became an Industrial Psychologist and was successful in his field.  His brother says, "He was brilliant and independent in thought...He could speak well and clearly. I don't know anyone who made more sense and who could handle questions and elicited discussions better." He loved to spend time with his children and grandchildren camping and visiting National Parks. My sister and I always enjoyed any time spent with him. He died 25 Jan 2001 in Decorah, Iowa, leaving his wife and many descendants. I think he would be amused to know that I have chosen him to write about in the category of "Sports!"

1 comment:

  1. I'd never thought of it before, but we don't have a sports tradition in the family that I'm aware of. You've given me a different way to think about Uncle Wally!