He was a literature, film, and music enthusiast, said another close friend, Lauren McCutcheon. His favorite reads included the Inspector Maigret series by the French writer Georges Simenon, and works by Italian writer Umberto Eco. His favorite musician was the late gospel singer Sister Rosetta Tharpe. Other musicians who were in heavy rotation on his iPod included Wanda Jackson, Etta James, Zap Mama, Fine Young Cannibals, and Elvis Presley, and he recently attended a performance by Natalie Merchant, McCutcheon said.
A lifelong dog lover, Mr. Peaden's first magazine subscription was to Dog World when he was 10 years old. As a youngster, he made model cars from kits with his brother Bret. Later, he found car kits and assembled cars on eBay and sent them to his brother as gifts. He "thrilled" his friends, McCutcheon said, with other eBay finds such as vintage postcards and jewelry and religious icons.
Mr. Peaden grew up in Florida and spent summers at his family's cabin in Boone, N.C.
He discovered the beauty of the French language at Landon High School in Jacksonville, his brother said. After earning a bachelor's degree in French from Davidson College in North Carolina, he earned a master's degree in French from the University of Pennsylvania, and completed course work for his doctorate at Penn. For three years, he lived in Lyon and Avignon, France, and taught at the University of Lyon.
In addition to his brother, Mr. Peaden is survived by a brother, Greg; a sister, Sarah Thogode; three nieces; and three nephews.
A memorial gathering will be at 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 19, at Alliance Française de Philadelphie, 1420 Walnut St., Suite 700, Philadelphia 19102. Donations may be made to Alliance Française de Philadelphie.
Contact staff writer Sally A. Downey at 215-854-2913 or firstname.lastname@example.org.