About Petersen's

We're caring and experienced professionals who understand that each family is unique and has personal requests and traditions.

We're located on Main Street in Newton, Kansas. We invite you to stop by to browse our facilities, and discuss your pre-planning needs at any time!

Erwin Theodore Olson

April 9, 2017


Erwin Theodore Olson, beloved husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, and physician died April 9th, 2017, at Wesley Medical Center.  Erwin was born in Lindsborg, Kansas, on November 12, 1919.  Initially working as a chemist during WW II, he was trained as a physician at the University of Kansas Medical School in the Navy and served as a flight surgeon in the Air Force during the Korean War.   He came to Newton in 1954 first as a general practitioner and, after additional training, as Newton’s first pediatrician.  He was in practice at the Bethel Clinic for 40 years.  There is hardly a family in the area that did not benefit from Erwin’s wisdom and healing.  Always an advocate for children’s health, Dr. Olson actively participated in the Kansas branch of the American Academy of Pediatrics including the presidency in 1979-1982.  After retirement, he volunteered with Newton Health Ministries, traveled, golfed, gardened, skied, and greatly enjoyed well-earned leisure time with his family and grandchildren.


In 1968, Erwin and his wife Gertrude turned a great tragedy into a loving legacy after their son, Charles, died in an accident.  He was a talented musician who expressed a desire for all music students who so wished to be able to have private lessons. His parents recognized this passion by establishing the Charles Olson Instrumental Music Scholarship Fund.  To date, the fund has supported scholarships for hundreds of music students in the Newton High School.


Erwin is survived by Gertrude, his wife of 75 years, Brenda Covert (Tom Covert), Kent Olson (Cornelia Krahn), four grandchildren:  Brian Covert (Nenita Covert), Jill Koshiol, Katherine Olson (Jason Rogers), Andrew Olson (Emily Hedges) and great grandson, Jack Rogers.


A memorial service will be held at the Newton Salem United Methodist Church at 2:00 pm Saturday, April 15th.  Memorials may be made to the Charles Olson Memorial Music Scholarship Fund. Petersenfamilyfuneralhome.com.



Print this obituary

7 thoughts on “Erwin Theodore Olson

  1. We are so sorry for your loss. We did not know Erwin well but whenever I saw him he was a wonderful conversationalist.

  2. Dr. Olson was a God-send for our family. Our condolences to Mrs. Olson and all his family. God bless.

  3. Everyone loved Erwin! He was a sweet, loving, gentle soul who will be missed. We send our deepest condolences to Gertrude and the entire extended Olson family. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all during this time of grief and sorrow.
    Vicky & Keith Hershberger

  4. Brian and Nenita, Jill, Brenda and Tom, I am so sorry to hear of your loss. Brian, I know how much you adored your Grandad. Praising God because we know exactly where is is celebrating Easter this year – with our precious Lord. What a legacy of love and service he has left for all of you to continue in your lives.

  5. E.T. Olson was a gentle Newton icon; fabric of the community. We were fortunate to have Doc Olson as our pediatrician for both our daughters. His obituary reads of a life well lived. May many good memories bring comfort.

  6. wonderful person and doctor
    and we enjoyed him and his wife shopping at designs by john flowers

  7. Dr Olsen was my favorite doctor. Always had such gentle, caring ways. My daughter always called him “Dr. Ocean”. She is now in her 40’s but he always has & always will carry him in her heart.
    Our deepest condolences to the entire Olsen Family.
    Irma Unruh & family

Sign Guestbook

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *