Nov. 2, 1941 – Oct. 2, 2012.
A rosary is scheduled for 7 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 7, 2012, at Ballard Funeral Home with Funeral Mass to follow Monday, Oct. 8, 2012, at 12:10 p.m., at Assumption Church, for Charles Leroy “Pete” Bergener, who passed away at the age of 71 on Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2012, in Albuquerque, following a lengthy illness. Pete had a presence in life that was much larger than his physical stature, and he touched a great many people throughout the years.
Pete was born Nov. 2, 1941, in Coffeyville, Kan., the first son of Dr. Karl and Janece “Frankie” Bergener. After the Bergener family had relocated to Roswell in 1954, Pete attended school at St. Peter’s, graduating from high school in 1959. [auth] He continued his education at NMMI, followed by ENMU and University of North Texas. Pete was an avid golfer from an early age, and he remained devoted to playing the game throughout his life. He loved watching all sports, whether scholastic, collegiate or professional.
Pete served his country in the U.S. Army, earning a Bronze Star for his service during 1968 to 1969 in Vietnam. Upon his return to civilian life, Pete resided a few years in New Orleans before finding his true home in the Kansas City area, where he enjoyed a successful business career, predominately in sales and consulting in the wholesale carpet and flooring industry, both independently and for Heartland and Bissell Corporations. After retirement, Pete moved back to Roswell in 2008.
Pete was preceded in death by his parents, Dr. and Mrs. K.L. Bergener, a sister, Barbara Montgomery, and a nephew, Claud Montgomery. He leaves behind a beloved daughter, Dana Brownrigg, and grandson Angus Brownrigg, of Albuquerque. He is also survived by brother-in-law Claud Montgomery, of Grapevine, Texas, and brothers Bob Bergener and wife Barrie, of Rifle, Colo., John Bergener, of Roswell, and Steve Bergener and wife Susan, of Katy, Texas. Surviving sisters are Jane Andrews and her husband Mike, of Roswell, Betsy Franchini and husband Greg, of Albuquerque, Teresa Reddoch and husband Dave, of Roswell, Karla Church and husband Chris, of Broomfield, Colo., and Martha Banning and her husband Bob, of Phoenix, Ariz. Surviving nieces and nephews and their families include Jeff Bradley, of Graham, Texas, Matt Bradley, of Henderson, Nev., Jake Bergener, of Rifle, Colo., Chris Reddoch, of Phoenix, Ariz., Dominic Franchini, of East Lansing, Mich., Mike Bergener, of Arvada, Colo., Mitch and Colby Reddoch, Nina Franchini, and Jeremy Bergener, all of Albuquerque, Ashley Church, of Broomfield, Colo., Brad Bergener, of Phoenix, Ariz., Ellen and Freddie Bergener, of Katy, Texas. Numerous great nieces and nephews survive him as well.
Pete’s many friends over the years, from early schoolmates to his more recent companions in the Friday Lunch Group were often treated to glimpses of his sharp wit and deft command of the English language, often summoning words or statements with a command of trivial facts and quotes that would astonish mere mortals. He was a well-traveled person, frequently recommending good restaurants or places to stay in faraway places all over the country. He was an impeccable dresser, always wearing the most tasteful clothing to complement the respect his presence commanded. Gifted with an acerbic wit, Pete was the instigator of many practical jokes and nobody was immune to these, be they friend or foe.
His larger-than-life persona will be missed by friends and family alike.
Charitable donations in his memory can be made to The First Tee of the Pecos Valley, 201 W. 19th St., Roswell, NM 88201; New Mexico Military Institute Foundation, Golf, 101 W. College Blvd., Roswell, NM 88201; or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 262 Danny Thomas Place, Memphis, TN 38105.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Ballard Funeral Home & Crematory. An online registry can be accessed at ballardfuneralhome.com.