Who was Vance Peterson?

Dad...let me help
Dad...let me help

Vance and his brother David
Vance and his brother David

"Coach Peterson"
"Coach Peterson"

Dad...let me help
Dad...let me help

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Vance was more than my cousin...he was my friend.

He was, perhaps, the closest thing to a brother I had, and I am not alone in this feeling. Growing up together you always think you will be there together forever. Then one day you wake up and that's just not the case.

My cousin,Vance, was the "Great Outdoorsman". More at home in the woods and near lakes and streams than in town, Vance's loves were his family, his friends, his students, hunting, and fishing. He taught High School Business and coached Basketball...a sport at which he excelled and played at the collegiate level. In his prime, he lettered in 4 sports in high school and was a state champion wrestler.

His love of chasing the fish was legendary to those who were fortunate enough to know him. From Alaska, to the Snake River, to local reservoirs, and creeks he always could be found with a rod and reel. He was an avid hunter as well and spent more than a few weeks every year “chasing the big ones.”

When the diagnosis of cancer came, and the type became known, I knew it was bad. When the end came, his wife was left a widow, and his children fatherless. It seemed surreal that the “healthiest” of us all could have been struck down so early and yet it happened.

The stoves that bear his name are named so because of the activities he loved so much; Ice fishing, hunting pronghorn, deer, and elk, and fishing Alaska. I originally intended for these stoves to be a type of legacy or memorial for his name…then I realized more could be done with them. To this end a percentage of all Peterson Stove sales is donated in his name to the American Cancer Society. Together, we can find the cure.

 

"Don't give up. Don't ever give up!"

-Jim Valvano