Dennis William James Peachey
1943 - 2020
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Dennis William James Peachey passed away on May 15, 2020 in Nazareth, Pennsylvania following a long battle with Parkinson's Disease.

Dennis was born on March 3rd, 1943 in Parry Sound, Ontario to William H.H. Peachey and Bertha (nee McEwen) Peachey. As a child, he grew up hunting the fields and lakes near McKellar and fishing the channels and islands of his beloved Georgian Bay. A natural athlete, Dennis excelled as a hockey player, skating alongside future NHL greats and representing Parry Sound in the 1954 Little NHL All Star game at Maple Leaf Gardens, where he tallied two assists in a 3-1 victory. While his winters were spent on the ice, his summers were spent on the water, at one time headlining the Parry Sound water ski show, dazzling many with his barefoot skiing ability.

As a teenager, Dennis accepted a summer job for Walter Bauman as a cottage helper on Bar Island on Georgian Bay. This decision would change the course of his life and that of many others. In 1960, the Baumans encouraged Dennis to move to the United States to attend boarding school at Blair Academy. He would quickly make his mark on faculty and friends, earning the Headmaster's Prize upon graduation in 1962, honoring his qualities of "leadership" and "loyalty."

Dennis was recruited to play hockey at Denver University where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Geology. During his time in Colorado, he developed his love of skiing and the West, further driving a passion for sports and adventure. Over a long life of outdoor pursuits, Dennis climbed Long's Peak, rode his mountain bike from Durango to Moab, and camped across the islands of Georgian Bay with his dearest friends and family.

In 1969, Dennis received an offer to return to Blair Academy, joining the faculty as Secretary of the Academy. In addition to his development role, Dennis coached soccer and skiing and taught in both the science and art departments; in the latter he showcased his brilliant stained glass abilities. As Assistant Headmaster for Finance and Development, Dennis grew the school's endowment and oversaw a renaissance in development of the school's Buildings and Grounds Committee. That being said, his greatest achievements were reflected in his genuine love of people and personal relationships.

A "father" to many boys and girls, his love for the students transcended his business role and left a lasting legacy for generations of Blair students. In 2006, Dennis was presented with Blair's Highest Honor, the Certificate of Merit, for his many contributions to the school. It stated, in part, "you have become Blair's foremost ambassador to the world." Though his humility would reject the moniker, he was known to many as "Mr. Blair."

Dennis served on the Board of Directors of the First National Bank of Blairstown, the Board of Directors of the Karen Ann Quinlan Hospice, and treasurer of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.

Dennis lived a life of principle grounded in loyalty, love of friends, and devotion to family. He is predeceased by three beloved sisters, Doreen, Daphne, and Barbara. Dennis is survived by his wife, Lynn, his daughter Meghan and her husband Josh Bogen, his son Derek and his wife Stephanie, and grandsons Lane and Davis. Gone from this earth, he is now undoubtedly enjoying warm summer breezes and the scent of white pine on Georgian Bay.

A future memorial service will be announced. Services are under the direction of the Newbaker Funeral Home, 200 RT.94, Blairstown, NJ. In lieu of flowers, the family encourages donations to the Peachey Fund at Blair Academy: https://www.blair.edu/support-blair/make-a-gift or the American Parkinson Disease Association. https://www.apdaparkinson.org/.

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Published in Parry Sound News on May 21, 2020.
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