Sally Jeanne (Grant) Peterson was called by our Heavenly Father to join her parents and two sisters on September 9, 2013, in the presence of her family. Sally was born in Baker, Oregon to Al and Modest Grant on June 27, 1938. She attended St. Francis Academy through 12-grade where she was active in school, won numerous music and leadership awards, and was Salutatorian of her class. Sally passed on an opportunity to attend The Julliard School of Music to enroll at Gonzaga University, thereby continuing a long family legacy first established by her father. As a sophomore, Sally gave strong consideration to joining the Order of St. Francis of Philadelphia. Fortunately, during Sally’s junior year, she met a fellow Gonzagan at the steps of the Crosby Library during Campus Days. She and Terry Peterson, of Livingston, Montana, dated for the next several years while Sally received her degrees in Sociology and Psychology, graduating with the class of 1960. At this time, she began her work career facilitating adoptions at Catholic Charities of Spokane.
Sally and Terry married August 10, 1963 at St. Francis Cathedral, a church painstakingly constructed by her grandfather in Baker and where Sally often sang and played the organ at Sunday Masses while growing up. Together they began their lives in Colville, where Terry taught school while Sally worked for the State Welfare Agency. They started their family and welcomed their children, Mike, Ann and Tim. During the summer months, Sally worked for Head Start assisting children in need.
In 1974 the family moved to Spokane where they joined St. Augustine Parish. This is where Sally immersed herself in various ministries and developed many close friendships that continue today. Once her children were older, Sally continued her commitment to quietly better the lives of others as a middle school intervention specialist.
Sally welcomed family and friends with a warm greeting, an open door hospitality, humor and a glass of wine. She could often be found working in her garden or chatting with a neighbor. Sally will be remembered for the sparkle in her Irish eyes, her professional status as a worrier, and her devotion to her husband, children, and seven loving grandchildren.
Sally is survived by her husband of fifty years and her children, Mike Peterson (Lori) of Helena, MT, Ann Becker (Steve) of Bozeman, MT, and Tim Peterson (Paul) of Monroe. Her sense of humor lives on in her grandchildren Haleigh and Sarah Peterson and Ashleigh, Matt, Katie, Alli and Lauren Buckner.
Vigil service was held Sept. 13 in the Gonzaga Student Chapel (third floor of the Administration Building). Mass of Christian Burial was held Sept. 14 at 10 a.m. at St. Augustine Catholic Church, 428 W. 19th, with a committal at Immaculate Heart Retreat Center. A reception followed in the parish hall.
In lieu of flowers, please make memorial donations to Catholic Charities of Spokane in Sally’s name.