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Service to others a passion for Burdick grand marshals

Staff writer

After spending a lifetime in service to others, Burdick native Bill Peterson and his wife, Judy, of Herington have been selected as grand marshals for the Burdick Labor Day parade.

Pastor Bill, as he was known by many, retired July 1 after serving Good Neighbor Parish for 10 years. The parish was formed in 2007 to include Hebron Lutheran Church at Burdick, where he was baptized and confirmed, and St. Paul Lutheran Church in Herington.

The couple were both lay ministers when Bill decided to seek a theology degree. He enjoyed the pastorate that followed.

“I took care of all the people I knew all of my life,” he said. “They knew all about me, and it seemed to work.”

He still feels a deep connection to Burdick and admires the camaraderie and pride the community feels for their Swedish heritage. He remembers when Burdick had a grocery store, a variety store, a drug store, and a couple of gas stations run by relatives. Everyone took piano lessons from Goldie Steele, he said.

“I love Burdick,” he said. “It’s not the same as it used to be, but I like the spirit of the community. They take care of each other.”

Being a pastor was the last of many avenues of service taken by Peterson. A son of Wendell and Mary Deane Peterson, he grew up in Burdick and graduated from Centre in 1968.

He and Judy were married a year after he graduated from Bethany College with a degree in sociology and social work.

He was administrator of Lutheran Home in Herington for 15 years and chief executive officer of Herington Municipal Hospital for 10 years.He later did consulting work, was a traveling motivational speaker, and spent one year at Manhattan Home Care and Hospice.

Last modified Aug. 30, 2017

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