It is with great sadness and heavy heart that we announce the passing of Margaret (Peggy) Boot (Atkinson) on February 17th, 2021 at the young and vibrant age of 80 after a short but courageous battle with cancer.
Margaret was the cherished mother of Ross (Christine) and Susan (Frank Martins) and adored grandmother to Matthew and Adelaide Martins. A loved and caring sister to Betty Atkinson and Carol McLeod (John) and predeceased by parents Joan and Bill. She was a proud, devoted and inspiring mother and grandmother. A supportive and caring daughter, sister, friend and mentor.
Margaret (known as Peggy to family and close friends) started her career as a file clerk with Century Insurance at age 15. Through commitment, hard work and a strong work ethic, she graduated as Fellow, Chartered Insurance Professional, FCIP, in evening classes with excellent marks. Margaret worked 50 years in the insurance industry. She retired in 2007 as Director of Automobile Insurance at CAA Ontario.
Upon retirement she pursued a number of interests. Peggy was our family story teller and renewed an earlier interest in family history and genealogy. Spending many hours on research, she wrote books on several branches of our family that had emigrated from England to Canada. She wrote a blog to share her stories and self published a few books. Through this research, she located and connected with 20 distance relatives, travelling across Canada and England to meet them; sometimes introducing them to each other for the first time and developing ongoing relationships until today.
She enjoyed art, museums and theatres. Peggy hosted many years of family holiday celebrations and weekends at the cottage in Simcoe. Peggy was proud of her children and proud to see them grow up to be good people. She was thrilled to spend time with her grandchildren enjoying parks, the zoo, museums, road trips and family holidays. She loved spending time with her sisters and travelling. She enjoyed keeping in touch with her friends and spending time with them (often lunch dates). She compiled story photo books after any adventure, celebration or milestone, providing valuable memories for everyone involved.
She was curious and constantly learning and sharing. She scoured newspapers for her family, clipping articles of interest: sharks and dinosaurs for her grandson and recipes and art for her daughter. She enjoyed new adventures and bravely walked at heights through Treetop excursions and the CN tower Skywalk, where not all of her family were as brave. She loved to walk through local parks, and birdwatched and travel across Canada and Europe.
Peggy was active at Baycrest’s Rotman Research Institute, supporting their brain research by being a willing volunteer. She was fascinated by the emerging study of brain function and wanted to support Baycrest’s work in understanding the causes of cognitive decline in seniors. She volunteered in many of their research studies by undergoing memory testing.
Special thanks go to Betty for her tireless dedication and personal help and love over the last 18 months. Betty’s support was precious and critical to Peggy’s health and happiness over the years, but especially during her illness. Betty is acknowledged by the entire family for her extraordinary love and commitment. Peggy (Mom) will be forever loved and forever remembered.
A small private family service will be held. Memorial arrangements will be made in future. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating, in her memory, to the Canadian Cancer Association. We invite you to leave condolences and memories of Margaret at Pine Hills Cemetery and Visitation Centre. www.etouch.ca