Robert “Pete” Richard Modine: ‘How He Loved His Family’

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Robert “Pete” Richard ModineRobert “Pete” Richard Modine passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on Sunday August 27, 2017.  Born March 8, 1928 in Herrick, South Dakota to Julius and Mildred (Wiegand) Modine, he was the 3rd of 7 children.  He served in the 82nd Airborne Division and traveled Europe while enlisted.  At a young age he met Phyllis Jean Hoffie whom he married and she gave him 5 children.  The family moved to Eureka, California in 1957 where Pete continued his career as a mechanic at Harper Ford until his retirement in 1992.

Pete and Phyllis spent most of their married life in Eureka, California where they watched their five children grow their family to include 9 grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren and 2 great-great grandchildren.  A lot of their time was spent at the property at Myer’s Flat where they would spend most of the summer surrounded by family and friends.  Many wonderful memories were made during these times. Long walks, campfires, heated games of dice, Pete’s stew on Memorial weekend, the bountiful garden and lots of children running around.

Pete was preceded in death by his daughter Barbara Torgersen.  Robert “Pete” Richard ModinePete is survived by his bride of 68 years Phyllis Modine; his children Ronald (Rebecca) Modine, Jeannie Ohm, Steven Modine,Lori Edwards and son-in-law Tom Torgersen; grandchildren Jennifer (Richard) England, Patricia Modine, Melissa (Jim) Applegarth, Andrew (Angel) Ohm, Ryan Ohm, Evangela Hopkins, Robert (Sidney) Torgersen, Tiffany (Matt) Hess, and Chloe Brown; great grandchildren Rich Jr. and Jessalyn England, Max Modine, James, Alex and Isabella Applegarth, Dustin and Tavie Ohm, Chase, Haylee, Madison and Denali Hopkins, Brett, Samuel,and Jacob Torgersen, Emma Jean and Madge Mae Hess, Alice and Peter Brown; great-great grandchildren Riven and Brooklyn Hopkins.  He also left behind a great many family and friends that were special to him.

The entire family can tell you he raised us with his kind and quiet strength.  Quick to smile, slow to talk, we all felt his love each moment we spent with him.  He led by example and showed all that he has left behind what it is to be a great husband, father, grandfather and friend.  His eyes sparkled when he laughed and he was always in good humor.  Always open to a visit and a chat, in his later years we would find him in his recliner watching an old TV show or at the kitchen table working a crossword puzzle.  And how he loved his family…it was amazing.  His great and great-great grandchildren visiting were a highlight of his day.  The conversations with the older ones, and the carefree playtime with the younger, he adored all his kids.  And in turn, he was adored by us.  There are not enough words to say how we feel about him and this beautiful family he created. He is forever in our hearts and never to be forgotten.

Thank you all for your heartfelt sympathy and kind words you have shared with our family.  While this is a terrible and tragic time for our family, it is nice to know that he was loved by so many.

We ask that friends and family gather on Saturday September 16, 2017 at 11am at the Immanuel Lutheran Church at 3230 Harrison Avenue to celebrate Pete’s life and wish him a peaceful journey to his next stepRobert “Pete” Richard Modine.



  • R.I.P kind sir.

  • Beautiful life the family member(s) who wrote this did a lovely job. RIP.

  • Grandpa was the best. It was the hardest thing I have ever had to write.

  • Ron,
    We’re sorry about your loss.
    Chet and Barb Ogan

  • A loving & touching story of this beautiful man who will be deeply missed by many. You did a great job of sharing the essence of Grampa. RIP Pete.

  • Truly wish he could have been my roll model. So sorry about your loss what a wonderful man. & family. Rest well Pete.

  • Patty, wow!!! Great words. The word that came for me today was “constant” when I think of Pete.

    I won’t Google it just now, but isn’t there some navigational term that involves a constant, maybe in regards to the North Star? Well that would suit Pete.

    It’s hard to think of him as gone because he is such a guiding light. Much love to you all.

  • What a wonderful tribute to an amazing person. My thoughts & prayers are with Ron, Rebecca & entire family.

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