She is survived by eight children: Bill (Susan), Sara (Mark Meltzer), Michael (Kathleen), Alice (Paul Munk), David (Sandy), Mary Rose (Charles George), Dominic (Eileen), and Bernard (Annette); 22 grandchildren; 26 great grandchildren; a sister, Frances Rebecca Mattingly of Cincinnati; sisters-in-law Catherine Rogers, Geraldine Peterson, and Mary Frances Peterson; and brothers-in-law Reverend Gerald Peterson, Reverend Harry Peterson, Reverend George Peterson, and Robert H. Peterson.
Rose Mary is the daughter of Sara Florence Thompson Osborn and William Louis Osborn, Sr. She was preceded in death by her husband of 69 years, William B. (Bill) Peterson, her son Paul Joseph, her grandson, John Daniel, and her siblings Joseph Anthony, Mary Irene, Naomi Celeste, Noel Benedict, Mary Cornelia, Sara Anna, William Louis Jr., Mary Ursula, Jim, and Joseph Dominic.
Rose Mary was a partner in the establishment of Peterson Farms and continued her keen interest in the evolution and growth of the farm operations until she died. She taught in the Marion County School System – at St. Charles School in St. Mary, Raywick School, and St. Catherine School in New Haven.
Rose Mary attended Mount St. Joseph College. Even though she interrupted her education to raise her young children, her desire for higher education never ceased, and she returned to Campbellsville College (now Campbellsville University) where, in 1972, she received her Bachelor’s degree. Rose Mary fostered her love of education in her children. Over the years, Rose Mary and Bill invited more than a dozen international exchange students into their home for sometimes six-month stays or longer.
Rose Mary’s faith and family were at the center of her life. She hosted Mary Days for large groups at her home at the old Coon Hollow Farm, prayed the rosary daily, and made rosaries which she donated all over the world. She modeled her deep faith for her children. She was a member of the St. Vincent DePaul and St. Francis of Assisi churches.
Rose Mary loved to entertain - whether it was throwing a big party on a Sunday afternoon with live music and everyone in the community invited, or making dinner for the workers on the farm. Her parties often attracted as many as a hundred people, and it was nothing to find a dozen people crowded around her mid-day table many times each week.
Rose Mary and Bill enjoyed a long and loving relationship and were truly a team. They worked hard, they were frugal, they supported each other, and they laughed a lot. They raised eight devoted children, and delighted in their grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Rose Mary’s grandchildren are Albert Peterson, Julia Hannan, Daniel Peterson, Sam Crews, Katey Crews, Meghan Steach, Adrian Peterson, Dan Roy, Zac Roy, David Munk, Henry Munk, Laurel Peterson, Madeline Peterson, Erik P. George, Michael George, Charles George, William George, Joseph George, Emily Blackburn, Molly Schottelkotte, Samantha P. Elmankabady, and Caroline Peterson.
Visitation will be at Mattingly Funeral Home, 195 Holy Cross Road, Loretto, KY 40037 (270-865-2201) from 4 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, June 23 and Friday, June 24.
A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, St. Francis, KY at 11 a.m. on Saturday, June 25. This would have been Rose Mary and Bill’s 70th wedding anniversary. Interment will follow at the church cemetery.
Because Rose Mary so frequently performed local acts of kindness for people in need, in lieu of donations, the family asks that each person do a good deed for someone