IRENE PETERSEN was born at home in Island Lake Township, Minnesota on January 2, 1933, to Frank and Annie Hellvig (Kindler). She was raised and attended country school here. Irene’s passion for animals and the outdoors was brought about early on in her life while she trained horses with her father. Soon, her talent became obvious and she became the sole trainer for their horses. On October 23, 1960, she was united in marriage to Alvin Petersen in Lynd, Minnesota. The couple made their home nearby on a farm close to Goose Lake. Prior to starting her family and working full time on the farm, Irene worked at Swift’s Turkey Plant. Year after year, Irene’s hard working character shined as she did whatever was necessary to maintain their farm from feeding chickens to breaking the iced over water troughs and even maneuvering hay bales and feed sacks. She especially enjoyed caring for and spending time with the sheep and lambs on the farm. As soon as spring began, Irene could only rarely be found indoors. After Alvin preceded her in death, she continued to live on their farm until she had the opportunity to be welcomed into the home of her son, Joe, in Minneota, Minnesota. On Thursday, April 25, 2019, Irene passed away at the age of 86 years.
Irene’s family was very important to her. She loved her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren with all her heart. Though she was tough and strong willed, Irene was also quiet and kind-hearted. She was sharp as a tack with an unrivaled memory. Her grandchildren will always remember her sense of humor and their various outings and activities including going to the free-store, fishing, and attending rodeos. The Porter Street Sale was always one of Irene’s favorite events. She was an avid fan of "The Price is Right" and polka dancing. Her famous fried potatoes will also surely be missed. Overall, Irene led a humble and modest life, but it was one to be proud of.
Irene is survived by her children, Joe (Judy) Petersen of Minneota, John Petersen of Ghent, Minnesota, and Susan (John) Laleman of Ivanhoe, Minnesota; seven grandchildren, Jessica (Joe) Wilson, Alex (Bee) Laleman, Adrian Laleman, Shawn Petersen, Morgan Petersen (Dana Hilfers), Patrick (April) Petersen, and Lisa Petersen; ten great-grandchildren, Carter, Dylan, Tyson, Layla, Abigail, Averyl, LaKita, Colton, McKenna, and Natalie; sister, Agnes Boe of Lynd; brother-in-law, Neil Petersen; and beloved dog, Daisy. She was preceded in death by her husband, Alvin; grandson, Anthony Laleman; and several siblings.