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David Eyre Petersen, 59, was taken from this world by pancreatic cancer on December 11, 2018.
As his family looks back on the life he made, we see how consistently he filled his days with kindness, curiosity, persistence, and creativity.
Born in Salt Lake City on November 12, 1959, David was the fourth child of Orville and Bonnie Jean Petersen. He grew up in Holladay, Utah, going on imaginary spaceship voyages in the backyard with his sister. At Skyline High School, he ran on the cross-country and track teams. He ran 3 marathons, always aiming to beat his own time. He loved to learn and graduated as valedictorian of his senior class.
David served as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Lima, Peru. Soon after he returned home, he married his high school sweetheart, Sharon Lloyd. In their early years together, they moved to Nebraska where David attended dental school at Creighton University.
After David graduated and set up his practice in Utah, he dedicated himself to being a dentist who changed lives. He loved the artistry involved in restoring patients’ smiles. He used his brilliant mind to watch out for people. More than once, he noted concerning symptoms and helped a patient follow up with their doctor to receive important diagnoses that saved their lives. He addressed each individual patient as a person.
David saw the world with an artist’s eye. His first sculpture was a two-foot-tall molar tooth, carved from alabaster. He sculpted creative pieces for his children. One of his most exciting moments this year was getting his first bronzed sculpture back from the foundry. He sang in the church choir and wrote an added verse for one of their songs. In recent years, David served on Daybreak’s Community Arts Committee, selecting installation art pieces to be placed around the area. He thoroughly enjoyed being part of his community in a creative capacity.
David was a caring, dedicated husband to Sharon for 37 years. He took her big ideas seriously and helped make them happen. Some of these ideas included remodeling a home together in Draper, Utah (where they lived for 17 years) and traveling to Russia to bring home 3 orphans and get them to other adoptive families. In the past several years, Sharon has experienced serious medical challenges. David stayed by her side, helping her through them all. During the year of his diagnosis and passing, Sharon cared for him as a wife and skillful nurse.
Loving Father and Grandfather
David helped his children with projects of all kinds: woodworking, science fairs, and major life decisions. He always found interest in new activities and projects—not necessarily because he developed a newfound passion, but because his loved one loved it. His children fondly remember vacations to the mountains and beach, his appreciation for Star Trek, and his dad jokes. They will never hear a pun again without thinking of him.
As each of his children grew up and married, he welcomed new sons and daughters-in-law with open arms. His four grandchildren loved his presence. He spent time with them whenever they visited, and his focused attention made them feel special.
David leaves behind his wife Sharon, their 5 children, Kathy (Christopher), Daniel (Cassandra), Adam (Madison), Stephen (Emma), and Anne Marie (Will), and 4 grand-daughters. He is also survived by his siblings, Michael (Laurie), Brent (Jeri), and Julianne.
One of the most important things David wanted to leave behind was his belief in God and Jesus Christ. He lived a life of faith in the Gospel and had a genuine desire to do good. His family will carry on his legacy.
David’s memorial service will be held Saturday, December 22.
10:00-11:00 am - Family greeting and condolences (in lieu of a viewing)
11:30-12:30 - Memorial service
11038 S Braidwood Drive
South Jordan, UT 84009
Donations made in David’s memory to support his widow can be made here: gofundme.com/inmemoryofdave