Oct. 11, 1914 — April 19, 2013
Our mother Helen Louise Petersen passed from this life on April 19, 2013, after 98 years as a Placervillian. She was second-generation El Dorado County resident, born on Oct. 11, 1914, in Placerville, Calif., to Margaret Elizabeth Callan and Thomas Christian Smith. She was preceded in death by her parents; her beloved husband, Enevold “Bing” Petersen; her son, Patrick Petersen; grandson, Michael Petetsen Jr.; great-grandson, baby David Fenrich; and her brother, Thomas Callan Smith. She is survived by her sons, Michael Petersen (wife Sharon) of Placerville and Thomas Petersen of Weaverville, N.C.; and daughter, Kathleen Trumbly (husband Wayne) of Placerville. She leaves behind nine grandchildren; 17 great-grandchildren; and several neices and nephews.
Helen attended local schools and was among the first graduating class from El Dorado High School on Canal Street in 1932. She attended Sacramento City College after graduation but returned home as the depression deepened. She worked downtown in local businesses. Her best friend’s family owned the Empire Theater and she and her brother Tom Smith both worked there. She sold tickets and Tom was projectionist. This is where she met the love of her life, Bing Petersen. They married in 1937. She was a homemaker for several years, taking care of her family.
In the mid 1950s Helen and Bing became the co-owners of the Placerville Drive Inn Market with her brother and his wife, Gloria. They sold the store in 1967 as Bing’s health was declining. He passed away in 1972. Helen retired from working in 1974 to take care of her 90-year-old mother and start another career in child care. She took wonderful care of her daughter’s children and several other children over the years. She was driving kids here and there, especially for ice cream at Thrifty, clear up into her 80s.
Helen will be truly missed by her family and all the people who loved her, especially grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Tom, her son, arranged for her to have a receiver in her room at Eskaton Lodge and later at Gold Country, where she received photos of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren and their activities on a daily basis.
The family would like to thank Gold Country Skilled Nursing and the entire staff for the wonderful care through the last year of her life. We would also like to thank the wonderful people at Eskaton Lodge. We would also like to especially thank Snowline Hospice for their wonderful care and support of our mom. A funeral mass will be held at St. Patrick Church on Monday, May 13, at 10 a.m.