Published May 19, 2020
Published May 19, 2020
It is with great sadness that we announce the sudden passing of “Peggi” Margaret (nee Racey) Calder at her home in Dunvegan, Ontario, on May 12, 2020, at the age of 75. Beloved wife for 50 years to the late William “Bill” Calder. Loving mother to Byron (Samantha Schofield) and Kathie (Steven Nunn). Proud grandmother to Corra and Hana Nunn of Coquitlam, British Columbia and step-grandson James Weller of South Glengarry, Ontario. Cherished sister to Frances Racey of British Columbia and Gordon (Sheena) Racey of Quebec, sister-in-law to Murray (Didi) and Robert Calder, both of Quebec. Will be missed by many nieces and nephews from multiple generations, as well as a wide range of extended family and friends. Predeceased by her parents Arthur Racey and Elizabeth “Betty” Wickson.
“Peggi” was born in Paris, Ontario in 1944 at the Hamilton Place estate. Shortly after selling the family homestead in 1949 they relocated to Gore Bay on Manitoulin Island in Northern Ontario. It is during these years growing up that Peggi began to develop her love and knowledge of nature. In 1962, after a brief stop in Heron Bay, the family found themselves at a new home in Senneville, Quebec. Upon finishing high school and moving to Montreal to become an independent employed young woman Peggi met Bill. They were married in 1968 and bought a house in Pointe Claire, Quebec out of the city, where in 1971 they began a family. In 1975 Bill realized Peggi would not be settled and happy in a suburban home for long and they moved for their final time to a farm in Dunvegan, Ontario. They began to grow deep roots in this Scottish community of Glengarry. Over the years Peggi volunteered with many organizations including the Canadian Cancer Society, the Woman’s Institute, I.O.D.E., Dunvegan Recreation Association, ARC Industries, and was even known for having taught a 4-H club or two. Her dedication and passion were also felt through other organizations, such as the Vankleek Hill Nature Society, where she not only led nature identification walks and wild edible presentations but also served as president and director for many years, and the Glengarry Pioneer Museum in Dunvegan, where she sat as a board member and put in many hours of time cataloguing, researching, guest speaking, gardening and was honoured to be awarded the Volunteer of the Year award in 2018. When raising two kids and keeping a hobby farm going wasn’t enough, Peggi kept herself employed using many of her various talents that included bookkeeping, proofreading, her writing skills (including many years as the Dunvegan correspondent for the Glengarry News), teaching her knowledge of wild edibles and even driving a school bus. Besides her amazing baking (and pickling) that she shared with much of the community over the years, Peggi will be remembered for her incredible love of nature. She was a wealth of knowledge and the first to help when nature called, whether that was baby racoons found abandoned, turtles laying eggs in a bad spot, baby ducks born in an unsafe environment or any number of other reasons her phone rang for assistance. Peggi was an avid bird watcher and nature enthusiast, even participating in annual bird and frog counts. It is a great loss for all who knew her and all looking for her knowledge and experience, whether that was bird and plant identification, genealogy information or her extensive ability for wild edible clarification, there is a huge hole left for many and will be felt throughout the community. Peggi also had a real love for music and a talent for making people smile. Her beautiful caring personality will be remembered by all who knew her and we are all thankful for the fond memories she has left us with.
Funeral arrangements under the care and direction of the Munro & Morris Funeral Homes Ltd., 114 Main St. Alexandria (613) 525-2772.
Peggi’s final resting place will be in Paris, Ontario, as well as a memorial marker with Bill in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia and in British Columbia for family and friends to stay connected. A memorial service will be planned and announced once gathering restrictions have been lifted. Keeping with Peggi’s continued support for local history and her love of nature, the family is requesting all charitable donations in Peggi’s memory be sent to the Glengarry Pioneer Museum via their website at http://glengarrypioneermuseum.ca/museum-donations/ or by mail at 1645 County Road 30, Dunvegan, ON K0C 1J0 and/or the Vankleek Hill and District Nature Society by mail at PO Box 366, Vankleek Hill, ON K0B 1R0.
As a Memorial to Peggi a tree will be planted in a memory woods. A tree grows – memories live. Condolences may be made online at www.munromorris.com