Vail Daily obituary: Peter D. Behrendt, Nov. 27, 1938 to April 26, 2017
Renowned for his wit, warmth and wisdom, Peter D. Behrendt passed away April 26, at the age of 78.
Born in Berlin, Germany, Nov. 27, 1938, to Gerda Keller Behrendt and Martin Behrendt, Peter spent most of the first five years of his life hiding with his parents during World War II. Having miraculously survived the Holocaust, the family immigrated to America when Peter was 16 years old. He knew only three English words when he arrived: chewing gum, cowboy and sweetheart.
Letting no obstacles stand in his way, he completed high school in Los Angeles and graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles, with a degree in engineering. In 1961, Peter began his professional career by joining IBM, where he spent the next 26 years, holding numerous executive positions, before moving to Colorado in 1987 when he joined Exabyte Corporation in Boulder as president and CEO.
Peter and his wife have split their time between Boulder and Vail since 1988, where their annual goal was to ski more days than their age.
Though Peter’s accomplishments were numerous, his most treasured times were those spent skiing, biking and traveling with family and friends. He visited more than 90 countries, often taking family trips to unusual destinations, instilling within his sons an appreciation for diverse people and cultures. He chronicled in hilarious detail the adventures (and mishaps) of each trip.
An accomplished photographer, Peter’s award-winning photography was often on exhibit. Devoted husband, father and grandfather, Peter is survived and will be greatly missed by his beloved wife of 47 years, Barbara; son Tony Behrendt; son Mark Behrendt and wife Kate; son Andrew Behrendt and wife Carolina; and grandchildren Lucas and Anna Claire. There will be a celebration of life in Vail this summer.