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News Death Notice
COLLINS, Margaret (Peggy) Wessinger died peacefully on December 2, 2013 in Fairfield, Ohio. She was born in Utica, NY on November 20, 1927 to Gerhardt and Margaret (Huckabone) Wessinger. After graduating from Utica High School, she attended Cornell University where she majored in chemistry. Upon graduation, Peggy was hired to work in the metallurgy lab for the Nepa (Air Force) project run by Martin Marietta Corp. in Oak Ridge, TN. She met John Franklin Collins in the high security labs at Oak Ridge; they were married in 1952 and relocated to work on a nuclear powered aircraft at General Electric in Evendale, OH. After funding for the project ended, they stayed in touch with the project team members for 30 years at their annual POPSEE reunions. While raising a family of five children, Peggy committed her energies as a volunteer. She was on the Fairfield Charter Commission; served 25 years on the Fairfield City Planning Commission, which set the course for the development of downtown Fairfield. She was involved in AAUW, League of Women Voters, Mercy Hospital Auxiliary, and Church Women United. Peggy volunteered at Sacred Heart Church as a lector, CCD teacher, altar guild member and the Arimathea ministry). Peggy and John loved to travel and pursued lifelong learning via the Elderhostel program; they completed 66 trips to US and worldwide locations after John retired. Peggy was preceded in death by her parents; her brother, William; and John, her beloved husband of 59 years who died in October 2011. She will be missed by her five children: Mary (William) Fairgrieve, Catherine (Craig) Eggers, Jean (Mark) VanOss, Christina (Bruce) Larson, and John Michael (Katherine) Collins. Eleven cherished grandchildren survive Peggy: Timothy VanOss, Kate Bagnoli, Maureen Walton, Jeanne Larson, Andrew Fairgrieve, Karin Harrington, Emily VanOss, John Eggers, Rebecca Larson, Benjamin Collins, and Eleanor Collins. Two great- grandsons were born in 2013 to her delight. Peggy's family is forever grateful to Sharon Bishop, Peggy's caregiver and best friend after John died. Peggy has requested that memorial contributions be made to: Miami University Foundation (John & Peggy Collins Family Scholarship Fund), Oxford, OH or Sacred Heart Church in Fairfield, OH. Visitation will be held 9:30 am with funeral mass at 11am at Sacred Heart Church, 400 Nilles Rd. in Fairfield on December 13, 2013.
Published in Journal-News on Dec. 10, 2013