Visitation at Funeral Home
Visitation at Funeral Home
Obituary of Robert T. Peterson
ROBERT Thomas PETERSON
1926 - 2019
In discussing Robert’s life, his nephew, William, noted that: “What I learned from having Uncle Robert in my life can be summed up in two words – ‘everything counts’.” Everyone who knew Robert would agree that he lived a life of excellence. Whether it related to his relationships with his family and friends, his God and his church, the organizations to which he belonged and which he served in many capacities, and even to strangers on the street, Robert related to all with kindness, generosity of spirit, a smile and a good word (frequently humorous). Always impeccably dressed, always with a spring to his step, Robert moved through every aspect of his life with enthusiasm and grace. To Robert, every activity or encounter deserved, and received, the best he had to give.
Robert was born in Brooklyn in 1926, and as a child, moved with his family to the Bronx, where he lived his entire life. He began his education at Saints Peter & Paul Elementary School on Brook Avenue (Bronx), and later graduated from Morris High School. While working as an Accounts Receivable Bookkeeper for the Swiss watch company, Endura, Robert owned and operated his own photography studio on 161st Street in the Bronx. His passion for photography continued throughout his life, to which his albums of family history will attest.
Though Robert never married, he faithfully and lovingly stood-in as a father for the family of his dear friend, Edward Williams, who passed away leaving a widow and eight young children. Throughout their lives, he loved and guided them, attended their school and family events, enjoyed holidays with them, and rejoiced in their successes. No father was ever closer.
Similarly, as Uncle Robert, he was an essential part of the lives of his 15 nieces and nephews, their spouses, their children, and their grandchildren -- always caring, always involved and the hub of family news, always there to be the uncle that everyone loved, and the uncle who nurtured each of them.
Throughout his life, Robert was an integral part of Saints Peter and Paul Parish, serving at various times in one or more capacities as usher, lector, cantor, soloist and a Eucharistic Minister. He was also a member of the Knights of Columbus for over 20 years.
In addition to his commitment to his work, family and church, Robert also served his community and country for four years in the U.S. Army National Guard, and then as a Lieutenant Colonel in both The Old Guard of the City of New York, and in the Seventh Regiment, and later, the Veterans of the Seventh Regiment (where he served as Regimental Chaplain, Fourth Vice-President and, from 2010 to 2016, as Treasurer of the Seventh Regiment Fund.) His service spanned over 70 years. In each organization, he frequently was part of whatever organizing, chore-doing, or inspiring that needed to be done for social or regimental events.
Into his late 80’s, Robert kept up with an activities calendar that would make a much younger man pale. And with it all, there was always time to take a call, do a favor, invite a guest (or several) or visit an ailing friend.
What will live on in the lives Robert touched is the memory of his (sometimes devilish) sense of humor, his beautiful tenor voice, and most of all, the love he always carried in his heart, yet freely gave away.
Robert will be remembered with love and laughter by his sister, Agnes (Peterson) Palmer, his nieces [Katherine (Palmer) McHugh, Agnes (Palmer) McCaffrey, Mary (Palmer) Murphy, Karen and Maureen Peterson], nephews (Vincent Palmer, and Kenneth, William, Richard, Robert and Michael Peterson), numerous grandnieces and grandnephews, and of course, by his “children” (Dennis, Mary Ann, William, Guy, and Katherine Williams), as well as all their spouses and children.
Now welcoming him “Home” are his “children” (Richard, Edward and Dorothy Williams), Robert’s brothers (John, William, Paul and Francis) and all their spouses, his nephews (Orio and Stephen Palmer, and Dennis and Phillip Peterson), as well as Edward Williams and all of Robert’s cherished friends who passed before him.
The family will be present on Sunday, November 24th, 2019 from 2-4 & 7-9 PM at Ruggiero & Sons, Inc. Funeral Home & Cremation Services - 732 Yonkers Avenue - Yonkers, NY 10704 (914) 375-1400. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Monday, November 25, 2019 at 12:00 PM at Saint Barnabas Church, 409 East 241st Street, Bronx, New York 10470 with Interment to follow at Woodlawn Cemetery, East 233rd Street & Jerome Avenue, Bronx, New York 10470.
Our facility at 732 Yonkers Avenue is independently owned & operated by Richard & Michael Ruggiero. This location is staffed by Michael, Eileen, Michelle and Andrew Ruggiero. At this time, this is the only facility owned and operated by the Ruggiero family
732 Yonkers Avenue
Yonkers, New York
Phone: (914) 375-1400