Margaret Cole "Peggy" Hollier, 87, of Bozeman, passed away of natural causes on Wednesday, July 20, 2011, at home in Bozeman's Hillcrest Senior Living Community. Family and friends were with her when she left to join Sam, her husband, whose passing preceded hers by just six months.
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Peggy was born Dec. 4, 1923, in Wheeling, W.Va., to Mary Lee (Berdine) and Edwin C. Cole. At the age of 13 her family moved from Hundred, W.Va., to Big Timber, where she graduated from Sweet Grass County High School. Peg then enrolled at Montana State University in Bozeman where she met her future husband, Louis Samuel "Sam" Hollier Jr.
After Sam transferred from MSU to the U.S. Naval Academy, Peggy also transferred to Johns Hopkins nurses training program in Baltimore, Md. With Sam's USNA graduation they were engaged and returned to Montana to marry on Dec. 29, 1944. Following Sam's retirement from the Marine Corps in 1975, they returned to Bozeman to establish their home on South Tracy.
For 25 years, Peggy represented the epitome of the Marine Corps officer's wife, moving her home and family efficiently and often and waiting, sometimes, for wartime news. She volunteered for the Red Cross, as a "gray lady" and Junior Red Cross coordinator, and for the Marine Corps Navy Relief Society; she treasured her affiliations with the Pi Beta Phi sorority, PEO and various bridge and book clubs. However, Peggy's great test, which she passed with her own brand of honor and courage, was that of constant companion to and tireless protector of her "Sammy" as he struggled and finally succumbed to Parkinson's disease.
Peggy is survived by her children, Louis Samuel Hollier IV of Slidell, La., Mary (Mark) Jones of Hall, and Virginia (Robert) Pueringer of Billings. She has nine grandchildren and six great-grandchildren, all of whom will miss her old-fashioned wit.
Peggy was preceded in death by her husband, Col. Louis S. Hollier Jr., USMC (Retired); her sisters, Sara Cole Steensland and Jane Cole Gust; her brother, William "Bill" Cole; her daughter-in-law, Jane Hollier; and her parents.
A graveside service to bury Sam's and Peg's ashes together, with military honors, will take place in Bozeman at 11 a.m. Saturday, July 30, at Sunset Hills Cemetery. A memorial service for Peggy will follow at 1:15 p.m. in Aspen Pointe Chapel at Hillcrest, 1201 Highland Blvd., Bozeman.
In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to the Museum of the Rockies, Attn.: Amber Udelhoven, 600 W. Kagy Blvd., Bozeman, MT 59715; or to Hospice of Southwest Montana, 1600 Ellis St., Suite 3A, Bozeman, MT 59715.
Arrangements are in the care of Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service; www.dokkennelson.com.
Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service
113 South Willson Avenue
Bozeman, MT 59715
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle on July 26, 2011