Funeral services were Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2010 at the Nain Lutheran Church in Newell. Burial was in the Newell Cemetery in Newell. The Fratzke & Jensen Funeral Home in Newell was in charge of the arrangements.
James Elmer (Jim) Petersen, Jr. was born Sept. 18, 1923, in Newell, to James Elmer Petersen, Sr. and Lillian A. (Shaw) Petersen. He was baptized in Nevada, Iowa.
Jim attended Newell Consolidated School and graduated in 1941. Following graduation, he worked for Montgomery Ward in Chicago, Ill. He entered the Air Force in January 1943 and had training at Miami Beach, Fla., Headquarters Second Air Force, Colorado, Boise Air Force Base, Pocatello Air Force Base, and March Air Force Base at Riverside, Calif. He left for overseas in December of 1943 to serve with the Eighth Air Force earning six Bronze Stars. He returned to the United States in May 1945. After a furlough, he served with the Fifth Ferrying Command at Dallas, Texas, until discharge in October 1945.
He was a member of the 453rd Bomb Group Association of the Eighth Air Force and also a member of the Second Air Division of the Eighth Air Force.
On Nov. 7, 1948, in Albert City, Jim married Betty Jean Gaes from Storm Lake. They built a new home in Newell in 1949. The couple was blessed with two children: Kevin James Petersen and Kem Michael Petersen. He worked as a fourth generation building contractor. Although all types of buildings were constructed, building houses was his favorite.
His hobbies included flying, fishing, gardening, and spending time with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Left to cherish his memory are his son Kem and wife Barb Petersen of Newell; daughter-in-law Claire (Kevin) Petersen of Newell; four grandchildren, Abby Jones and husband Jeff and son Brody of Sioux Rapids, Molly Petersen, fiancée Brandon Betz, and son Harrison of West Des Moines; Kodi Brotherson and husband Matt of Breda; and Travis Petersen and wife Jordan of Carroll; sister-in-law Mary Lue Rude and husband Dale of Sioux City; brother-in-law James Gaes of Storm Lake; sister-in-law Lea Gaes of Storm Lake; sister-in-law MaryLinn Petersen of Newell; numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins; and extended family and friends.
James was preceded in death by his parents, his son Kevin, two brothers: Gerald Petersen and William Petersen and wife Carol, two brothers-in-law: Raymond Gaes and Fred Gaes, Jr., three sisters-in-law: Jeanette Gaes, Leone Buchholz and husband Walter, and Shirley Gaes.