March 27, 1940 ~ February 19, 2024 (age 83) 83 Years Old


Gerald Arthur Peterson, 83, passed away on February 19, 2024, in Riverside, CA.
Jerry was born on March 27, 1940, in Detroit, Michigan, to Marvin and Helen (Edwards)
Peterson. He graduated in 1958 from Gladstone High School in Michigan and immediately
entered the U.S. Navy, where he served from 1958 to 1962 aboard the U.S.S. Alamo. After his
discharge from the Navy, he joined his mother and sister in Orange, CA. The family attended
the Evangelical Free Church of Orange, CA where he met Kathy Carlson. He and Kathy were
married on June 18, 1966, and together they had two children, Brian Peterson (52) and Carlene
Sawyer (49).
Jerry received a teaching degree from Cal State Long Beach in 1969 in Industrial Arts. His
teaching career started at the California School for the Deaf in Riverside which prompted Jerry
to move his growing family to Riverside, CA in 1974. In 1988, Jerry earned a master’s degree in
special education from Cal State San Bernardino. Jerry taught special education and developed
the Workability Program for Riverside Office of Education until retiring in 1994.
Jerry is survived by his loving wife, Kathy of 57 years; brother, Richard Peterson and sister,
Barbara Elkin; son, Brian Peterson of Arden Hills, MN; daughter, Carlene Sawyer of Riverside,
CA; three grandchildren, Katie Peterson, Jack Peterson and Shane Sawyer, and numerous
nieces and nephews. Jerry deeply loved his family.
Jerry was a true “handyman”, whether it was woodworking, house painting, helping others with
needed projects or odd jobs around the house. And there were always projects to do around the
house. If there was cutting involved, his favorite phrase was, “Measure twice, Cut once”.
Throughout his time in Riverside, Jerry was an active member of Grace Baptist Church, Victoria
Community Church, and Magnolia Church. He used his handyman skills at these churches
where he enjoyed building sets for dramas and the Living Christmas Tree. Jerry also enjoyed
singing in the church choirs.
Some of Jerry’s favorite activities included season tickets to LA Clippers, Angels baseball, CBU
basketball games and NASCAR races. Jerry also enjoyed traveling. He and Kathy went on
numerous cruises all around the world, took the family camping when the kids were young, and
many trips to visit family and friends.
Jerry will always be remembered as a gentle and quiet man with a sweet smile.

Celebration of Life Service will be held on March 27, 2024, at 1:30 pm in the Worship Center of
Magnolia Church, located at 8351 Magnolia Avenue, in Riverside. The family requests that in
lieu of flowers, donations be made to Magnolia Church's “Caleb Senior Ministry".

Arrangements entrusted to the care of Akes Family Funeral Home, Riverside,

©copyright 2024 Akes Family Funeral Homes

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Funeral Service
March 27, 2024

1:30 PM
Magnolia Church
8351 Magnolia Ave
Riverside, CA 92504


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