Lovett C. Peters died Thursday, November 11, at the age of 97. After a fall this summer that led to a fractured hip, it was his hopeful determination that took him from hospital emergency room to rehab center, to his home, to a walker and even a cane. In October, Pete came to the office and attended board meetings. His death came after a fall at the theater, when his walker got caught on a carpet.
His was a great life—a hopeful, principled, determined, and undiscouraged life. We were all touched by it, as were thousands and thousands of children in the Commonwealth and elsewhere in the country, because of his work to improve the academic excellence and equality of opportunity in our schools.
The family wrote in his obituary that
Peters died believing he had won the greatest lottery of all time – he was born an American. He loved this country and felt blessed beyond measure by the opportunities he was given.
Pete always saw opportunity, and he was uniquely suited to succeed in a land noted for its freedoms. He was extremely goal-oriented — and once his initial goals were achieved, he always looked for newer and farther reaching ones. Certainly, this aided him in his trajectory from humble origins to economic success. But the values he learned from parents who were educators — and his ability to keep true to those values — marked him for success in private life and friendships as well.
At the age of 75 he dedicated himself to improving his community and his state. Naturally, given his view of opportunity and given the opportunities private scholarships afforded him, Pete understood the important implications of improving our schools.
And as one learned to expect from Pete, he brought a laser-like focus to the cause. Perhaps his optimism in his and Pioneer’s ability to succeed in this difficult task was best expressed in Ronald Reagan’s Inaugural Speech:
Together we have made a new beginning, but we have only begun.
No one pretends that the way ahead will be easy. The ills we suffer have come upon us over several decades. They will not go away in days, weeks or months. But they will go away. Because we as Americans have the capacity now, as we’ve had it in the past, to do whatever needs to be done to preserve this last and greatest bastion of freedom.
We will carry this work well into the next generation. We will carry it forward with that same Peters hope, the same Peters principles and the same Peters determination.
His Memorial Service will be held at the Church of the Redeemer (379 Hammond Street, Chestnut Hill) starting at 11 am on Saturday, December 11th. A reception will follow at The Country Club (191 Clyde Street, Chestnut Hill).
I welcome all of you to post your remembrances of Pete. It would be a wonderful gift for the Peters family and his family here at Pioneer.