Donita L. Petersen


peterson donita picDonita Louise Zinn Petersen was received into the arms of her Lord and Savior on March 16, 2013, after a long and steadfast battle with cancer. Donita was born August 8, 1953, in Stillwater, Oklahoma, to Domby and Marietta Zinn. She graduated from Putnam City High School in 1971 and received a BS degree in physical therapy from the University of Oklahoma in 1975. She was a medically licensed Registered Physical Therapist whose innovative skills encompassed in love profoundly changed many lives. Kids of all ages were the love and focus of her life, centered in private practice pediatric physical therapy, Special Care, Inc, and building the pediatric program at Jim Thorpe Rehabilitation Center. Even with this professional commitment, “family” defined Donita as she poured her immense energy into her own kids, son Nick, daughter Gena and step-daughter Kristen. On December 6, 1997, Donita married Dale Petersen, “the one my soul loves”. The family circle of strength and love was found in holidays, family vacations, weddings, births, the lake cabin, the mountains, long walks on the beach and daily pleasures. Grandchildren were the crowning enlargement of that circle. Donita was a long time member of Chapel Hill United Methodist Church, an active member of the Bible Study Sunday School Class and a leader in the Chapel Hill Cancer Support group. Her total commitment to Jesus Christ was the guiding force in every facet of her life with an unfailing reliance that God is in control. Donita is survived by her husband Dale of Edmond, her mother, Mari Zinn of Oklahoma City, son Nick Burkett and wife Robbi with grandson Jack of Frisco, Texas, daughter Gena Rossow and husband Alex with granddaughters Lydia and Claire of Olathe, Kansas, step-daughter Kristen Johnson and husband Michael with grandchildren Katelyn and Austin of Mustang, Oklahoma, brother Larry Zinn and wife Judy with children Jessica, David and Megan of Mannford, Oklahoma, brother Don Vaught and son Joshua of Edmond, Oklahoma, and nephews Andy Zinn of Canyon Lake, Texas, and Daniel Zinn of Oklahoma City. She was preceded in death by her father Domby Zinn and brother Keith Zinn. The family gives special acknowledgment to the NETS team at Ochsner Medical Center in Kenner, Louisiana, the Bible Study Sunday School Class, the “A Team”, Pioneer Country Emmaus, Kairos of Oklahoma and the Horizon Unit at the Davis Correctional Facility. A celebration of Donita’s life will be held at 10 AM Wednesday, March 20th, at Chapel Hill United Methodist Church, 2717 W Hefner, Oklahoma City. Memorials may be made to Special Care, Inc. 12201 N Western, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73114, or to Carcinoid Cancer Awareness Network at .Funeral services are under the direction of Matthews Funeral Home and Cremation Service.


  1. Nick and Family,
    Your Mom was such a joy to be around and we will remember those times fondly. Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time.

  2. Nick & Gena and Families,

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this
    difficult time.

  3. Donita, you and Dale have touched my life in a very special way. I will always cherish your memory.

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