Obituary for David Alan Pedersen
PEDERSEN, David Alan (Dave), 64, born on April 30th, 1950, at The New York Polyclinic Hospital in New York City, NY, passed away peacefully on Sunday, January 25, 2015 at his home in Pearl River, NY, from complications of Diabetes. He was found with a smile on his face.
A Memorial Service will be held on March 1st at 4:00 pm at the YMCA in Nyack.
In lieu of flowers, as per his request, donations may be made to any of the following organizations; The Rockland YMCA, The Rotary Foundation of Rotary International, Jawanio (Rockland Center for the Physically Handicapped), The Hi-Tor Animal Shelter or the Historical Society of Rockland.
David was the beloved son of the late Marguerite Pedersen, born to Emil and Anna Olsen in 1908. She was a long time and active Rockland resident who passed away in 1987. His father, the late Thomas K. Pedersen, (Torjei Pedersen Aasland) was born in 1901 to Peter Pedersen and Anna-Marie Pedersen Aasland in Aeseral, Norway, passed away far too young from a heart attack in 1969.
He is survived by his older brother, Thomas K. Pedersen married to Carolyn Pedersen, a well known artist, their children, his nephew, Thomas Scott Pedersen, and niece, Kirsten Pedersen Szustak. His closest relatives were his cousin Ann Sylvia Bogusz, her husband Bob, their children Lisa and Debbie, Janet and Wally Hoag and their daughter Ingrid. In addition were his cousins Frank Erichsen, married to Eileen and their twin sons Frank and Eric and Eva Erichsen who is married to Ed Brylawski and their two children Jim and Alexis… There were large family get togethers, and David would inevitably be the life of the party…
His beloved friend and soulmate, Anna Pedersen Harding, (daughter of his in-laws, the late Maria Chattey and her husband Nigel Chattey from Irvington, NY) were married on the “Commander” in 1991. A Paul Harris Fellow, she was an enormous support in his life, until his last day on earth…
As were his loving daughter Alana Oleinikoff Ali, (also a Paul Harris Fellow) and their grandchildren, Dakota and Kalianna. His sister-in-law Maria-Victoria Solstrand and her three boys, Gunnar, Kristian, and Niklas, who all live in Norway, were a large part of his life when they were able to get together, as was his sister-in-law, Bonnie Chattey who resides in Glendora, CA.
Jeffrey Keahon and David were avid golfers, playing together every chance they could. Enjoying playing golf as a foursome and dancing the night away with Angela and Anna, at fundraising events, and Rotary functions together…
Jeffrey and Angela’s son Will, his wife Tracy, and their children, William Jr. and Natalee Jean were like a second family to him, and have been such a support during this difficult time… David always spent Thanksgiving at their home, welcomed with open arms…
David had also been married to Patricia Pedersen and Sandra Cokeley.
Growing up, David was an active participant at the Park Evangelical Free Church in New City, founded by his mother. It was there that he met some of his life-long school and church friends, all who had ribbons of perfect attendance, as one would expect…
She was the owner of Pedersen’s Travel, and a Real Estate and Insurance business, that both became located in the Pedersen Building on Main Street in New City, along with other tenants. David became President of Pedersen’s Travel and manager of the building after she passed away.
Marguerite was an active member of the Rockland Chapter of Soroptomists International, a business women’s group, founder of the Organized Taxpayers Association, the Park Evangelical Free Church, and a Paul Harris Fellow of Rotary International. She was named Rockland County Woman of the year in 1976, and again in 1986 by the Rockland Business and Professional Women’s Club.
His father, Tom as he was known, came to the US in 1922, as an electrician by trade. He spoke no English, and got a job with a flooring company in upper Manhattan, becoming foreman. When he and Marguerite moved to New City Park in 1938, he started his own Flooring company (T. Pedersen Flooring).
In 1948, after getting her Real Estate license, expanding their business and receiving her Insurance Brokers license in Pearl River, she opened an Insurance and Real Estate business in Nanuet. Convincing her husband to get his own Real Estate license, he began building homes, partnering with a group of friends from NY and Norway (Tryon Construction). The group built 48 homes just off of Eckerson Road in Spring Valley.
Refusing to “clear cut” properties, each purchaser would agree on where the house would be placed, and which trees should be saved. The houses were staggered so as not to be a “development.” The 50 acres of land behind their final home on Goebel Road was also developed by the Tyron group.
Like his father and brother before him, David became an active member of Rotary. Serving as Secretary, Treasurer, Vice-President and President of the New City Rotary Club. During his tenure as District Governor in 1987-1988 of District 7210, David was known as “the ladies’ man.” The year that women were finally inducted into Rotary.
At the same time, he was named as a National Coordinator for Polio Plus. His plans to coordinate the raising of more than $4 million within District 7210 over two years, to help eradicate Polio by 2015, was a world-wide effort of all Rotary Clubs. The organization dedicated itself to collecting to vaccinate most of the children expected to be born over the next few years in impoverished nations.
In their largest fundraising effort, Rotary International set a goal of raising $120 million dollars world-wide. At the Philadelphia International Convention it was announced that Rotary International had actually raised $240 million, doubling their goal, to rid the world of polio. The magnanimous efforts of David and Jeffrey Keahon were a considerable contribution to the success of this fundraising campaign.
David’s business career was varied; while owning Pedersen’s Travel, he became actively involved with ICONN (Island Complex Offshore New York, New Jersey and Connecticut)-Erie, in Irvington, NY, a massive project to re-dredge the Erie Canal, using the dredge spoil to fill hollow, modular, ballastable caissons to build an energy island offshore Manhattan.
The project that still remains alive, now known as POSEIDON Patents, Inc,, that includes ICONA (Island Complex Offshore North America), as well as eight other major marine logistics patents, of which he was still a Vice President.
He was Vice President of The Page Connection, a Westchester based Graphic Design/PR and Communications firm, that published his District Newsletter, and that of several future Rotary Governors.
After selling Pedersen’s Travel to his Nephew, Thomas Scott Pedersen, when the fund raising effort of Polio Plus came to a close he took on the position of Executive Director of the Rockland YMCA’s, running 13 satellite facilities, and spearheading the renovation of the swimming pool, in great need of repair.
David continued to serve on many Boards of Directors, many with Jeffrey; The YMCA, Jawanio, the Hi-Tor Animal Shelter, and many others. They were both major contributors to the election campaign for C. Scott Vanderhoeff for County Executive of Rockland. Scott remained County Executive for over 20 years. He then worked as the Project Coordinator of the Rockland Environmental Corps and the Rockland County Youth Bureau.
His last endeavor was that VP of Marketing Coordinator of “The Collections of Maria, Inc..” The marketing of 2000 pieces of artwork of his late mother-in-law, Maria Chattey. He was also working on a website to market his own works of art, known as “Zin Works”, of which he was the Zin Master. He always carried his notebook and magic markers… His art unique unto any that have ever been seen, and will become a Collection themselves.
In his later years, David’s intense studies of world religions, brought him to Buddhism that he studied extensively and practiced in earnest. With much enlightenment coming from the writings of many of the great teachers; The Dali Lama, Eckhard Tolle, Marianne Williamson, Byron Katie, Andrew Harvey, among many others, supported by his dear friend Beverly Cavalcante, a truly enlightened being.
David was a unique soul who was never forgotten by anyone who met him, and loved by all that knew him. He had friends all over the world, but his closest circles remained in Rockland County. His wisdom and profound, eloquent speaking manner was appreciated by all who heard him. His amazing sense of humor, perhaps his greatest gift, made people laugh until they cried.
And now he is off playing golf with Jeffrey again…
God bless you and keep you, David, and may your new friends continue to enjoy your wit and wisdom.
If any of you wish to add a word to the list of testimonials, something that you were grateful for about your relationship, or memories with David, or any photographs that could be included in the presentation, any and all would be deeply appreciated, and may be sent to email@example.com.
Thank you for your kindness and deep friendships…