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Pete Rodewald, 69

Peter P. Rodewald, age 69, of River Falls, Wis., passed away peacefully at Comforts of Home assisted living center on Feb. 10, 2010.

Peter was born on Sept. 13, 1940, in Salem Township, Ellsworth, Wis., to Norman and Esther Rodewald. The family lived in Ellsworth, Elmwood and Maiden Rock, Wis., until 1951 when they moved to River Falls. In 1954, the family moved to a farm near Clifton Hollow outside of River Falls where Pete lived until August 2009 when he became a resident at Comforts of Home Assisted Living until his death.

Peter attended the Carpenter Country School in rural Ellsworth through 5th grade, Campus School (known then as the Teachers' College) in River Falls through 8th grade and attended and graduated high school at the Wisconsin Academy in Columbus, Wis.

Peter worked for the Tegeler family farms for 33 years until the farm land was rented to George Jacques. Pete worked for George for 12 years until George retired and closed his business. Pete worked for Remington Seed Company in Hastings, Minn., from August 2004 to July 2009 when he became too ill to work.

Pete was an avid "rock hound" and rocks were his passion since early childhood. He started collecting agates at age 4 and continued his collection of rocks and minerals through his adult years. He was especially interested in agates and copper and acquired many specimens from all over the world. He displayed his collection and gave lectures and slide presentations at many mineral shows. He also gave presentations to local boys and girls clubs. In 2005, he was invited to attend an all expenses paid mineral show in Munich, Germany. He took many trips to the copper mines in Keweenaw Peninsula, Mich., or as Pete always called it "copper country." Another one of his hobbies was amateur photography. He loved taking nature pictures and, of course, pictures of his rock collection. Several photographs of his agates have been published in "The Beauty of Banded Agates" and "Agates II."

Another of Pete's interests was bird watching and he was a member of a bird counting club. He especially loved eagles and visited the Kinnickinnic State Park often where he would watch the eagles for hours. He enjoyed bowling and bowled for over 30 years at Bud's Lanes in River Falls where he carried an average of around 175 through most of his bowling years. He was a huge pro sports fan, especially for the Green Bay Packers, Los Angeles Lakers and Minnesota Twins. He also liked to play cards and hunt. Gardening was one of his great joys and he especially took pride in corn, squash and pumpkins. He will always be remembered for his joke telling; he loved to tell jokes and usually would be the person laughing the loudest at his own jokes.

Peter is survived by his brother, LaVern (Pamela) Rodewald of Larimore, N.D.; sisters, Betty (William) Berg of Saint James, Minn., Doris (Bernard) Lunak of Branson, Mo., Rose (Donald) McVitty of Somerset, Wis., and Susan Coleman of River Falls. He is also survived by one favorite uncle, Ronald (Rita) Andrus of Dunnellon, Fla.; 13 nieces and nephews, 17 great-nieces and nephews and 14 great-great-nieces and nephews; many cousins, and many, many friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Norman and Esther Rodewald; maternal grandparents, Rex and Henrietta Andrus; and paternal grandparents, Val and Anne Rodewald.

Funeral services for Pete will be at 11 a.m. Monday, Feb. 15, at the River Falls United Methodist Church. Rev. Janet Ellinger will officiate. Burial will be in the Greenwood Cemetery, River Falls. Visitation will be from 1-4 p.m Sunday afternoon at the Cashman-Hill Funeral Home, River Falls, and for one hour prior to the service at the church on Monday.

For online condolences go to Cashman-Hill Funeral Home & Cremation Services, River Falls, is assisting the family with arrangements.