Theodore M. Peterson Jr.
September 20, 1948 – July 19, 2021
Theodore Melvin Peterson, Jr., "Ted," passed away peacefully on Monday July 19, 2021, returning to his heavenly home at the age of 72. Ted had an unwavering devotion to his family and friends, a strong and steady faith and constantly served others above himself. This all helped him this past year as he courageously battled an illness that ultimately brought him to the peace where he now eternally rests.
Ted (affectionately known as “Teddy” by some) was born in Newport, Rhode Island on September 20, 1948 to the late Theodore M. Peterson, Sr. and Frances Fox Gager Peterson. Growing up in a Navy family, Ted and his three sisters had the opportunity to see a lot of the United States as well as many other parts of the world. His family eventually settled down in Connecticut, the state where Ted would call his home for the rest of his life. He graduated from Waterford High School in Waterford, CT, in 1967, where he was a star athlete, a fiercely talented basketball player, and a track and field all-star who earned the title of state champion for high jumping. He attended Trinity College in Hartford, CT, where he also was a star basketball player.
Although Ted held various jobs over the years serving the community, such as being a lifeguard and a police officer, he was a career electrician, working for Northeast Utilities (now Eversource) for approximately 40 years. The highlight of his career was being a lineman, which required being on call and often spending late nights in the harsh, cold winters of Connecticut to ensure electricity was on for all the families in his area.
Ask anyone who knew Ted; he was the gentlest of giants. From far away, Ted looked like a tight end for his beloved New England Patriots, but up close he had the kindest, warmest heart, funniest, larger-than-life personality, and the best smile you could imagine. Although he loved his New England Patriots, his favorite sports team was the UCONN Women’s Basketball team; he never missed a game, a tradition he passed on to his daughters, Tara and Ashley, whom he shared with former spouse Janice Anglin (spouse Randy).
Ted has left behind a strong legacy of love that will be carried on by his family and friends. He is survived by his two beloved daughters Ashley Riddick (spouse Tim) and Tara Stuart (spouse Mike), four cherished grandchildren Sydney Riddick, Kai Stuart, Sophia Stuart, and Camilla Stuart, nephew Jim Wharton (spouse Maria and children Juliana and Tyler), niece Marci Senior, and former wife Janice Anglin (spouse Randy). He was predeceased by his beloved sisters, Ruth Wharton, Jeanne Senior and Mary-Ellen Murphy.
Throughout his illness, Ted fought and remained strong-willed, as he was determined to get better so he could move down to Virginia to be near his daughters and grandchildren. He was never shy about his love and blessings, proclaiming his love for his family and friends, telling them every chance he could get, and thanking God for his blessings. Ted exemplified the characteristics of faith, optimism, grace, gratitude, and humility. His unique, often sarcastic, sense of humor remained completely intact until the end. He very frequently put others’ needs and concerns above his own, even while he was terminally ill. His last weeks on this earth were spent with his daughters, his dear friends Robin and Chris, and the dedicated nurses, medical staff, and caregivers by his side. The joy and beauty he exuded during this time will never be forgotten and always cherished. He displayed an attitude of gratitude that was unmatched and an inspiration to all he met.
To honor and remember Ted’s life, a celebration of his life will be held by his family on Saturday, July 31 at 12 Noon at the Lyme Tavern (229 W. Main Street Niantic, CT 06357). All who knew and loved Ted are invited to attend and share in this celebration.
In lieu of flowers or donations, Ted’s daughters encourage you to please help keep his memory alive by sending any stories you may have about Ted to the following email address: email@example.com . Prayers, condolences, memories, funny stories are all welcomed and greatly appreciated.