In tribute

Published online: Feb 27, 2015

The TPI Board of Trustees is deeply grieved to announce the passing of three very special people within the turfgrass community.

Steven Petersen - Petersen's Turf Farms

Steven Peterson of Petersen's Turf Farms in Osgoode, Ontario, Canada was taken in a tragic accident on February 16. Steven was Co-Owner of the farm, which began operating in 1969. Steven leaves behind many loving family members, including his wife, Vicki, and children, Ethan and Mason. He is also survived by his parents, siblings, nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews and many in-laws and friends. His contributions to his business and to the turfgrass industry have been much admired and we are sorry to say farewell to this young turfgrass farmer.

Services have been held. In lieu of flowers, donations made to the Diabetes Association would be most appreciated by the family.

Betty Bell - Biograss Sod Farms, Inc.

Betty Bell, mother of TPI Past President Warren Bell, passed gently on February 25. Betty worked with her husband, T.H. Bell, to develop Biograss Sod Farms, Inc. in 1979. When T.H. was called to Washington, DC shortly after they established the farm, Betty worked together with their four sons, Mark, Glenn, Warren and Peter to ensure the success of the farm. BioGrass is now Utah's largest and oldest sod farm and a leader in formulating water-efficient seed mixtures that result in lush and durable sod. Betty's contributions will be deeply missed.

Plans for services are pending.

Ray Volentine, Sr. - Tulsa Grass & Sod Farms, Inc.

On Monday, February 23, we bade farewell to Ray Volentine, Sr. Ray and his wife, Patty, were pioneers in sod farming when they opened Tulsa Grass & Sod Farms, Inc. on just 10 acres in 1953. They have grown their family farm to more than 1,700 acres of sod production. The Volentines believed that everybody should be able to afford a healthy natural grass home lawn and ensured their prices were affordable for all of their neighbors.

Ray was a longtime supporter of TPI, having joined in 1974 and serving as a volunteer. Services will be held on Saturday, February 28 at 10:00 am at Cedar Ridge Christian Church in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. Contact Bixby Funeral Service for additional information. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Ray's memory to the Cedar Ridge Christian Church Building Fund.