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Dylan Peterson

Dylan J. Peterson, 11, died Thursday, Feb. 25, 2010, in St. Mary's Innovis Health, Detroit Lakes, after a long battle with muscular dystrophy.

Funeral services for Dylan will be held Tuesday, March 2, 2010, at 11 a.m. in Grace Lutheran Church, Detroit Lakes.

A gathering of friends and family will be held at David-Donehower Funeral Home on Monday, March 1, 2010, from 5 to 7 p.m. Visitation will continue one hour prior to services on Tuesday.

Dylan James was born March 13, 1998, in Mobridge, S.D., to Jon Tate Merchant and Tara Peter-son. At the age of 5, Dylan moved with his mother to Detroit Lakes. He recently was attending fifth grade at Rossman Elementary in Detroit Lakes. Living his entire life with muscular dystrophy, Dylan kept active. He loved playing video games, swimming, horseback riding, jet skiing, bowling with his classmates, talking on the phone and watching NASCAR. He shared a love for police officers and always showed his excitement when they would sound their sirens. Through Make-A-Wish foundation, Dylan was able to watch the Indianapolis 500, a memory he cherished dearly. He also liked to dance for his family and enjoyed spending time with his dog, Diego. Dylan displayed to his family the true meaning of love, courage and the ability to live life to the fullest. Life will seem empty without Dylan but his family will always remember his beautiful smile, quick wit and his never ending love for his family.

He will be remembered and deeply missed by his parents, Jon "Tate" Merchant of Mobridge, S.D., and Tara Peterson of Detroit Lakes; two brothers, Brett VanVugt-Merchant of Mobridge and Anthony Larson, Detroit Lakes; a sister, Marissa Merchant, Detroit Lakes; grandparents, Corinne Fingalson, Rochert, and Jerome Fingalson, Rochert; great grandparents, Holly (Judi) Bergstrom, Rochert, and great grandpa, Gordon Peterson, Hawley. He was also loved by his aunts and uncles, Angella (Nick), Kaylla (Scott), Michelle, Alexis, Angel, Brandon (Christine), Tyler and Mauricio. He is also survived by several great aunts, great uncles and cousins.

He is preceded in death by his grandpa, Roger Peterson, and great grandma, Gladys Peter-son.

Memories of Dylan may be shared online at

David-Donehower Funeral Home, Detroit Lakes, is taking care of arrangements.