John Edgar Peterson

Oct. 29, 2013

John Edgar Peterson (BS Mech Egr '57) died Oct. 21, 2013, at his home in Vero Beach, Fla.

He was born in Escanaba, Mich., and graduated from Escanaba High School. He attended Michigan State University, where he earned both a BS in mechanical engineering and an MBA. During his time at Michigan State, he met his loving wife of 54 years, Barbara Nelson.

His professional career began in 1959 in technical sales at Corning Inc. During his 24-year tenure at Corning, he held various leadership positions including managing director for the company's Brazilian operations in Sao Paulo, Brazil, as well as president of Corning Cable Systems (formerly Siecor Corp.).

In 1983, he and his colleagues founded Celwave Technologies, Inc., which was later acquired by Alcatel, Inc. At the time of his retirement in 1994, he served as chairman and CEO of Alcatel NA, Inc.

Peterson is survived by his wife, Barbara; his children, Krista Peterson Seabolt and her husband William "Chip" of Holland, Mich., and Hans Edgar Peterson and his wife, Siobhan, of Cornelius, N.C.; six grandchildren, Ben, Anna and Sarah Seabolt and Conner, Liam and Andrew Peterson; sister, Sally Hansen and her husband, John of Menominee; and brother-in-law, John Nelson, and his wife, Beverly, of Hickory, N.C.

A memorial service was conducted Nov. 2 in Grace Chapel of the Community Church of Vero Beach. A guest book and more information are available at Strunk Funeral Home, Vero Beach, at