Ralph Gerald Peters Sr. passed away peacefully on Oct. 3, 2019, at Oak Park Place in Burlington. During his final days in hospice care, he was surrounded by many family members who helped to care and comfort him as he made the transition to being with his Lord and Savior, as well as other loved ones, in heaven.
Ralph was born in Chicago on Sept. 24, 1934, to Harold and Elsie (Cole) Peters.
He married his high school sweetheart, Helena Erakovich, on Sept. 27, 1952, at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church in Park Ridge, Ill. After 44 years of marriage, the Lord took Helena to heaven on Nov. 22, 1996.
Ralph married the second love of his life, Mary Shea Flanagan, on March 5, 1997, at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Fort Atkinson. They were blessed with 22 years together until Ralph’s passing.
Ralph followed his father into the printing business and worked his way up through the ranks of numerous companies to production superintendent. He also was an entrepreneur who started and headed his own printing company in Elkhorn for many years.
Ralph is remembered fondly for being a passionate and outgoing person with a magnetic personality that endeared him to many who came in contact with him. He was a dedicated family man, an avid fisherman and hunter, a Chicago hotdog connoisseur, a White Sox and Bears fan, a great storyteller and a person who loved to share his faith with others in a variety of ways.
In addition to his wife Mary, Ralph also is survived by three of his children with Helena: Ralph (Ilse) Peters Jr. of Fort Atkinson, Marian (Eric) Jacobsen of Menomonie and Kurt (Rebecca) Peters of West Bend. Additionally, he is survived by his stepdaughters, Kari Flanagan of Mukwonago and Kathleen (Marc) Harris of Salem, South Dakota. Lastly, he is survived by 15 grandchildren: Kirsten, Nicole, Sarah, Shanna, Michelle, Amber, Brittney, Stephanie, Sean, Kellie, Katherine, Amber, Allison, Kailey and Benedict; 18 great-grandchildren; and his older brother, Thomas Peters of Holiday, Fla.
Preceding Ralph in death was his beloved baby daughter, Debra Jean Peters, who passed away as an infant in 1955, as well as his younger sister, Carol (Edward) Van Cleave.
A visitation will be held on Tuesday, Oct. 8, at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, 301 S. High St., Fort Atkinson, from 9 to 11 a.m. Funeral services will begin immediately after the visitation at 11 a.m.
Memorials can be made in Ralph’s name to the charity of one’s choice.
Nitardy Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.