Denise M. Peterson was born on March 12, 1964, in Appleton, MN, the daughter of Dennis and Rita (Mellet) Rens. She died on Thursday, June 13, 2013, at
the Sanford USD Medical Center in Sioux Falls, at the age of 49. Funeral services were held June 17, 2013.
She received her education in Lennox and graduated from Lennox High
School in 1982. She received her B.A. degree in 1985, her M.A. degree in
1988 and her E.D.D. in 1998, all from the University of South Dakota. Denise
was united in marriage to John Peterson on Sept. 8, 1990, in Lennox. In
1997, they moved to Brookings, where Denise was employed at South Dakota
State University as assistant professor in leadership and group dynamics.
She lived to teach.
Denise always said, “If I have made an impact on at least one person, I know
I have done something right.”
She is survived by her husband, John, of Brookings; her children, Jessica and
Brock; her parents, Dennis and Rita Rens of Lennox; three sisters, Julie
(Ron) Blair of Palm City, FL, Lisa (Andy) Crumpton of Prosperity, SC, Melissa
Rends of Lancaster, SC; and the students she encountered, and other loved
family and friends.
Denise will be remembered as a loving mother, faithful wife and a brilliant