Craig R. Pedersen, 72, passed away on January 31, 2020, in Chandler, Arizona. A former resident of California for nearly fifty-four years, Craig first lived in Livermore, where his father was stationed at Moffett Field. When his father was hired at Camp Cook, subsequently Vandenberg Air Force Base, Craig moved to Lompoc at the age of eleven, and lived there for nearly nine years. He loved the small town life. At this young age, he became a boy scout, a newspaper delivery boy, and a member of the local drum and bugle corps. In his early teens, he built his own rockets, inspired by watching weekly missile launches from Vandenberg Air Force Base. And he loved coordinating events such as rock and roll parties, only informing his parents about them a few days beforehand.
He first pursued his interest in writing by becoming the editor of his high school newspaper. After graduating in 1965, he attended Allen Hancock College, and again became the editor of the school newspaper, there. He won multiple writing awards at both schools, and also successfully organized one of the first rock and roll fundraising concerts the college had ever had.
In 1966, Craig moved to San Jose, where he met the band members of Blue Fever, a psychedelic rock band, later renamed to Uther Pendragon. He wrote lyrics and became their manager, proceeding to book venues all over the San Francisco Bay area. He was drafted three years later and sent to Viet Nam, but upon returning home from his army service, he regrouped with the band in Menlo Park, and they built a recording studio in Palo Alto. The band lost the lease and never got signed, however they all remained lifelong friends.
In the late 70’s Craig married, and by the early 80’s had a daughter, Daynah, whom he cherished his whole life. He always spoke of her abilities, and that there wasn’t anything she couldn’t accomplish.
He developed a computer hardware company with his brother, Scott, in the mid 80’s. Their company, Critical Path Development, devised a voice input operating system for IBM compatible computers.
He created a website in 2002 about the history of rock and roll and the beloved band he managed. By a twist of fate, Guerssen Records, a record company in Spain, saw his website and contacted the band in 2013. The rest is history. Their previous recordings were remastered and produced into a double album, San Francisco Earthquake. It’s one of Craig’s greatest legacies, and proves you should never give up on a dream.
Craig was self-taught and excelled at nearly everything. He was extremely talented in all mediums of art, including music. He was an enthusiastic entrepreneur, writing two cookbooks and bottling and labeling sauces to sell. He was exceptionally skilled in computer technology, and loved anything pertaining to the aerospace industry.
Rest in Peace, Craig. You worked hard and left your mark on the world. We’ll miss talking with you and being in the presence of your enduring optimism, superb memory, and unequivocal knowledge.
Craig is preceded in death by his parents Daniel and Gwendolyn Pedersen, and his brother, Kent Pedersen. He’s survived by his daughter, Daynah, his brother and best friend Scott, his sister Janice, his brother in law Robert, his niece Donna, and all of his close California friends, including his band family.