Charles Glenn Petersen

1946 - Terril Years


Just a month before I graduated for high school my mother took ill. The doctor in Estherville, Iowa, put Mother in the hospital there for observation. The doctor, Christian Smith Kirkegaard, the same one that attended Mother at my birth, had moved his office from Ringsted to Estherville. The next day she had a stroke, but seemed to be doing okay when we visited her. Dad, Ed, and I were in church the next day when the call came that Mother had had another stroke and was now in a coma. We rushed to the hospital and stood vigil most of the day. That evening Dad took Ed and I home and went back to the hospital. I remember to this day the sound of the back door banging closed sometime in the middle of the night when Dad came home. Mother was dead. The shock was unreal. She seemed fine just a few days ago and now she was gone.

The next few days were a blur. I remember Dad calling her parents in Swea City and his siblings in Ringsted and hearing him break down as he told everyone the terrible news. The outpouring of sympathy from the community was overwhelming, I didn't realize how much she and my father were respected. I remember little of the funeral service at the Methodist Church nor the burial at the cemetery, which is located 2 miles east from the south end of Terril.