3/24/1940 ~ 7/17/2022
Mary Genevieve (“Mary Jane”) Edwards Peterson returned to her Heavenly home on July 17, 2022. She was born on Easter Sunday, March 24, 1940 in Vallejo, California to Thomas Ellis Edwards and Mabel Orilla Brierley. Her doctor was aptly named Dr. Bunny.
As a child, Mary Jane moved frequently throughout northern California. She lived in Vallejo, Applegate, Colfax, Sacramento, and Auburn. She also lived in Reno, Nevada. While she made friends wherever she lived, her closest friend in her early years was her younger brother, Lowell. Despite a four-year age gap, she always allowed him to be her little shadow.
When she was about 8 years old, her family was given a Boston Terrier named Bootsie. This began a lifelong love of Bostons. Mary Jane owned several throughout her life, and especially cherished their companionship in later years.
She met Lowell Jack Peterson (“Jack”) when a college roommate from Fillmore took her home for a visit. The two friends attended a dance in Flowell. Jack saw Mary Jane walk in, and the Spirit whispered to him that she would be his wife. The message scared him so badly, he spent the evening playing the records on the record player and didn’t dance or even talk to her. Fortunately, Jack later found the courage to invite her to the National Guard dinner and dance and they were married in the Manti Temple on June 29, 1961.
Mary Jane always loved being active and playing sports. At about 12 years old, she learned to ski while living in Reno, Nevada, and passed her love for it on to her children and grandchildren. While her children were living at home, the family spent most winter Saturdays on the slopes. To the amazement of their friends, she later taught many of her grandchildren to snowboard. She loved softball, and once played catcher on a championship fast-pitch team while pregnant with one of her children. In her later years, she enjoyed competing in the Utah Summer Games and in triathlons.
Mary Jane’s love of sports led her to earn a bachelor’s degree with honors in Physical Education from Brigham Young University. Over 22 years, she taught hundreds of 5th grade students at Fillmore Middle School. She was a lifelong learner, who encouraged her children and grandchildren to continue learning also.
Mary Jane was baptized into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at 9 years old, but didn’t consistently attend until she was a young teenager. Once she started attending regularly, she never stopped. She faithfully held many callings, including serving as an ordinance worker in the Manti Utah temple. She and Jack served two full-time missions together in the Tennessee Nashville Mission, spending the majority of their time in Tompkinsville, Kentucky.
Mary Jane is survived by her husband, Jack; her children Deanna Peterson (David), David Peterson (Bonnie), Ellis Peterson (Janene), Don Peterson (Lara), Annette Lund (Steven), Kristine Akenson (Chris), Kalani Atkinson (Dallin), Tim Peterson; 31 grandchildren; 33 great-grandchildren; and 2 great-great-grandchildren.
Funeral services will be held Tuesday, July 26, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. in the Fillmore 1st/4th Ward Chapel. Viewing will be held Monday July 25, 2022 from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. and Tuesday July 26, 2022 from 9:30 – 10:30 a.m. prior to services both at the church. Interment in the Fillmore City Cemetery. Due to some family members with allergies please refrain from wearing perfumes, deodorants and other scented items.