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Peggy Holmes
February 23, 2016

Obituary

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Peggy Holmes

by Jenny Amy

 

It is with great sadness that I must inform you of the passing of our dear friend and fellow Rotarian, Peggy Holmes. Peggy was one of the first women members of Southampton Rotary Club, and I believe the first woman President of the Club in 1999/2000 and a past Assistant Governor for Area I, District 6330. She died February 23, 2016 at Elgin Lodge.

 Peggy was a teacher librarian in her professional career, and was a sparkly-eyed, witty person. She was a great traveler, and great companion who taught us so much about being a friend and a community champion. She used to tell stories at the bookstore [Storybook House] on Albert Street every summer in the tent that was erected to shelter her and the children while they enjoyed each other’s company.

Peggy volunteered at G.C. Huston School listening to children practice reading. She attended public meetings when the school was in danger of closure, famously announcing that a community without a school was not one that anyone would want to live in.

Peggy was also a committed Rotarian, serving on almost every Club committee at one time one another. After her term as President, she accepted the position as Assistant Governor for Area 1, and I remember her travelling all over the area on snowy days and nights attending meetings during a time when one area club was folding. Peggy and I attended the Rotary International Convention on Chicago in 2005, driving down in her new red van and meeting Rotarians from all over the world. Peggy hosted exchange students in cooperation with the Port Elgin Rotary Club.

Even after Peggy moved from her house to her cottage, and then to Elgin Lodge in Port Elgin, she continued to attend meetings with the help of several members, who gave her a ride to our meetings. As she grew less mobile, she volunteered to come and write receipts and do other jobs she could manage.

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 The last meeting she attended was this past Christmas, when she joined us at the Christmas Dinner at the Walker House. In addition to her Rotary connection, Peggy Holmes was a founding member of the RHS Southampton, a chapter of the Red Hat Society. Our goal as a Society was to have fun and enjoy each other’s company – no fund raising or volunteering, as “we all have closets full of T-shirts with the names of worthy causes on them.” The Society was very active for ten years, meeting almost monthly. Peggy was our “seer”, as she was a reader of tea leaves, and the “Mistress of Chocolate” providing a chocolate fountain for our amazement at one meeting she hosted at her cottage.

We will all miss her presence in our lives and our community.

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Margaret “Peggy” Holmes passed away peacefully at Elgin Lodge, Port Elgin on Tuesday February 23, 2016. Margaret Jean Holmes (nee McGregor) of Southampton in her 85th year. Beloved wife of the late Stewart Holmes. Loving mother of Fraser (Tracey) Holmes of Smiths Falls, Jeanne Holmes (Sam Shaw) of Toronto, and Christopher Holmes of Kansas City. Dear grandmother of Elizabeth, Andrew, Emma, Cooper, and Carson. Survived by her sister Barbara (Curtis) Sprague, by her brother Ken (Francine) McGregor and by her extended family of Holmes’, McGregors, and Spragues. Predeceased by her parents Bruce & Helen McGregor.

A Memorial Service to Celebrate the Life of Peggy Holmes will be held at the Southampton United Church, Southampton on Friday March 11, 2016 at 1 p.m. If desired, memorial donations may be made to the Southampton Rotary Club or the Friends of Port Elgin Branch Library.

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