Nenita “Nita” Santos Peterman, a 17-year resident of the Colville and Addy, Washington, area, passed away on Feb. 12, 2023, in Colville at the age of 80. Nita was born on Nov. 1, 1942, in Baguio City, Philippines, the daughter of Felix F. and Esperanza (Navidad) DeLos Santos.
She was raised in the Philippines where she attended school and later began a family raising two daughters, Larena and Plenette, and one son, Ariel, as a single mom. In 1966, she met a young U.S. Navy sailor named Thomas “Tom” James Peterman, and their love began in that moment. After a short courtship, Nita and Tom exchanged vows on Oct. 1, 1968.
Following Tom’s honorable discharge, they moved to Twisp. Their family grew with the birth of their son, Andrew, in 1974. Following the birth of Andrew, they later left Twisp and traveled across the U.S. residing in communities in Florida, Alabama and Idaho. Both chose to return to Twisp where Nita worked in the home continuing to care for the needs of her family.
In the early 1980s, Nita began working outside the home as a cook. Tom and Nita lived on both Oahu and Maui in the early 2000s, where Nita worked at local laundry facilities and Tom approached retirement with the National Park Service. Together in 2005, they left the islands and moved to Colville where they could be closer to family. In 2008, they built a home in Addy where she has resided since. Tom preceded her in death on April 21, 2022.
Nita and Tom shared their life, love, and adventures throughout the years, always side-by-side. They enjoyed time with family as they camped, fished and hiked while capturing every moment and family memory on camera. Nita had a flare for cooking meals and deserts from pan fried chicken to perfectly finished pies. Country drives, home catered picnics and a favorite fishing hole seemed to go hand-in-hand with Nita. She had an eclectic character and was always on the move. Fireworks to finer moments defined her spit-fire approach to life and often without a breath between sentences. She cherished conversations anchored in philosophy and the greater meaning of existence. She appreciated a tidy home, a well-manicured garden and order in everything in-between.
Nita was preceded in death by her husband, Tom, and her son, Ariel.
Nita is survived by her son, Andy (Katy) Peterman of Colville; two daughters, Plenette Garcia of Portland, Oregon, and Larena (Kirk) Upton of Walla Walla; five grandchildren, Ella Mae, Tara, Nelly, Bridgette and Marvin; and three great-grandchildren, Kyra, Havoc and Greyson.
The memorial service for Nenita “Nita” Santos Peterman began at 11 a.m., Thursday, Feb. 23, 2023, at the Danekas Funeral Chapel in Colville. Memorial contributions may be given to the Arbor Foundation. Please visit the online memorial and sign the guestbook at www.danekasfuneralchapel.com. Danekas Funeral Chapel and Crematory is entrusted in care and arrangements.