2014-01-02 / Obituaries

Peter Alvin Goudreau


Peter Alvin and Barbara Goudreau Peter Alvin and Barbara Goudreau UNIVERSITY PARK, Texas – Peter Alvin Goudreau, 84, of University Park, Texas, passed away Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013, peacefully at his home among his family.

Pete was born on Sept. 14, 1929, in Muskegon, Mich. He grew up in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan with one of his first and most memorable jobs being a bell hop at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island during the heydays of the 1940s. He earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree in chemical engineering from Michigan Technical University followed by graduate studies in business management at the University of Tennessee, Oak Ridge, and the University of Houston, Clear Lake. Pete had a long and successful career in engineering management including early work in his career for the U.S. Rubber Company, Dow Chemical Company and Oak Ridge National Laboratory. He retired to Florence, Ala., from the Du Pont Company in 1991, after many years working in maintenance, production, and technical management.

Pete was active in various professional organizations including: AIChE, AIPE, and ISA. Peter proudly served his country in the United States Army during the Korean War.

After the passing of his wife in 2009, he moved to Dallas to be close to his sons and their families. Living next door to his four grandchildren was a blessing, providing them all the opportunity to know and love each other. Despite the extensive time that he devoted to various ministries in his community, he repeatedly verbalized that his family was his greatest joy and he was blessed to spend his final years so nearby.

During retirement, Pete found passion and joy as a long time servant of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul. Before joining the local conference after his move to Dallas, he and two friends had started and managed the first St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Store in Florence. He continued his diligent service to the Society by volunteering at the Dallas St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Store weekly. Pete was a permanent fixture at every Bundle Sunday, regularly attended weekly meetings, and participated in home visits to those in need. A close friend describes him as a “great servant of Christ and someone I want to emulate for the rest of my life.”

Pete was also a devoted member of the world’s largest Catholic fraternal service organization, the Knights of Columbus, having joined the order in 1953. He was a third and fourth degree Knight active in Councils in Florence, No. 3989 and Dallas No. 799. He was also a member of Father Abram J. Ryan Assembly. Pete is described by his friends as a “quiet, hardworking member of the Council, always quick to volunteer for the Lenten Fish Fry dinners.”

Pete was a faithful parishioner of Christ the King Catholic Church where he was found “every morning in the fourth pew on the right.” He regularly attended the Wednesday evening bible study at the church. He was well known at the church consistently described as a “great guy, sweet man.”

Pete served as a volunteer at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas for several years at the professional desk, welcoming guests and navigating them through the hospital. He was described by the other hospital volunteers as “fabulous, always the first to show up at events and a joy to be around.”

Pete was also an active member in the Berea, Ohio Elks Club (BPOE) and an Elder in the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians.

He is survived by his sons, Peter John (Linda) Goudreau and Dr. Jeffrey Bennitt (Sally) Goudreau; grandchildren, Christina, Melanie, Alexander, and Savannah. He also leaves behind his sister, Mary (Jack) Salter; brother, Wilbur Goudreau, Jr.; nieces, Jacqueline Salter, Robin Higgins, Angela, Carol, and Roxanne Goudreau; and nephews, Dennis and Gary Salter, and William Anderson.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Barbara; and sister, Rita.

A Vigil Service was held on Dec. 12, followed by a Memorial Mass on Dec. 13. Both were held at Christ the King Catholic Church, 8017 Preston Road, Dallas, Texas 75225. The family requests any donations in his honor be made to the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, 8017 Preston Road, Dallas, Texas 75225.

Both Barbara and Peter will be buried in Epoufette Cemetery in Michigan in the fall.

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