Mark Raymond Peterson, of Avon, Indiana was born on May 4, 1954 to Herman and Maybelle Peterson in Fergus Falls, Minnesota. He earned his golden wings in the early hours of March 7, 2022, surrounded by family, when his Lord and Savior called him home. He is survived by his wife of nearly 34 years, Lisa (Ragan); his three children and their spouses, Shaun (Mary) Peterson, Amanda (Aaron) Botsford and Ashley (Caleb) Gibbons; his eight grandchildren, Shelby, Ayden, Evelynne, Alec, Benjamen, Laney, Lylah and Lilliann; two great-grandchildren, Abbigail and Jackson; his sisters, Kathy Waseen and Sandy (Jim) Robinson; his brother, Joel Peterson, as well as many beloved relatives across the U.S. and abroad. He was preceded in death by his parents and youngest sister, Janet. While there is no amount of time spent on this side of heaven that would ever be enough, there is comfort in knowing that Mark lived a full life. He was a truly devoted family man who loved fiercely and unconditionally. There is nothing he wouldn’t do, without hesitation or expectations, for his family or a friend in need. It was that passion and iron-willed strength that Mark held onto until his very last breath. Early in his life, Mark was raised on a farm and helped his parents harvest and prepare produce to sell at their family-owned grocery store before relocating to the quaint, lake-side city of Underwood, Minnesota. A star athlete, Mark graduated from Underwood High School in 1972 and briefly attended St. Cloud State before enlisting in the U.S. Air Force. As a proud republican who never turned down a healthy political conversation, Mark loved his country. He believed that every voice should be heard and felt strongly that everyone should be involved in politics to help protect our freedoms for future generations. Mark served in the Vietnam War, and was later stationed in Turkey, Greece, England and several bases across the U.S. over a distinguished nearly 23-year military career. He retired as a Master Sergeant and Special Agent for the Office of Special Investigations (OSI). During his service, he also earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Criminal Justice. Through the Air Force, Mark, Lisa and the kids were able to travel abroad and have many wonderful, cherished memories of places many can only dream of experiencing. Upon retiring from the military, Mark brought the family to Lisa’s home state of Indiana where he worked for CNA Insurance as a claims investigator for the Special Investigations Unit (SIU). He later opened his own private investigation practice, Patriot & Associates, before officially retiring in 2011. It was only then did he realize his greatest purpose and joy in life through his role as Papaw. For his children, and later grandchildren, Mark was never one to miss a game, competition or recognition event. He would quite literally drop anything to be present. Mark was even known to be a “cheerleader” in the stands as his way of showing his kids that he was their biggest supporter, while also providing a healthy dose of embarrassment. His lap was a treasured nap spot for his grandchildren as they were snuggled and lulled to sleep by the ticking sound of his bionic heart valve. If family didn’t come to him, he came to them and often popped by just to say “hello” or to drop off treats like fresh salsa made from his homegrown tomatoes. Mark greatly enjoyed cooking and served many wonderful meals around the kitchen table over the years. His biscuits and gravy were a favorite. When it was time to leave, the only appropriate way to say goodbye was “the Papaw wave.” Mark also enjoyed watching westerns, crimes shows and sports on TV from the comfort of his beloved recliner. He was an avid golfer who made his own clubs and proudly cheered on the Indianapolis Colts and Minnesota Vikings. When the two teams played each other, it was the Colts that had his favor. His style went through many seasons throughout his life, from polished three-piece suits to shorts and polos; however, one thing was for sure – Mark had a watch for every occasion. He never left the house without his pocket knife or cologne. His greatest look, though, was the pride he wore on his heart for his family. The family would like to share a special thank you to all of the doctors and nurses at the Eskenazi Shock/Trauma Center and ICU who not only provided Mark with an unmatched level of care, but also showed an immense amount of love and support towards the family in the midst of such a great loss. A celebration of life will be held in the spring. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Mark’s honor to the Fisher House Foundation or the Eskenazi Health Foundation.