Peggy O’Neill, a longtime Nahant resident, passed peacefully on December 31st surrounded by family at Salem Hospital. She wanted nothing more in life than to make others laugh and have fun.
Within her home, the line between friends and family was always erased. Peggy loved her children, Jackie and Sean, her husband, Peter Davis, the mountains, her dogs, Rodgers and Hammerstein, and anyone and everyone who walked through her always open doors. She hated being in photos.
She was raised by her parents, Joseph and Arlene O’Neill, in Forty Fort, Pennsylvania, along with her four brothers, Joe, Jimmy, Michael, and Brian. Her best friends, the Laubners, lived just down the road. In high school, she became the first member of the Willie Nelson Fan Club north of the Mason Dixon line. At Clarion University, where she earned a degree in Nursing, the women of First Floor Nair took her in, taught her to wash her sheets, and became a permanent presence in her life.
Always an adventurer, her travels took her across North America through national parks and dive motels. Peggy and Peter built lives in Columbus, Ohio, Hong Kong, Singapore, Bali, and Los Angeles before returning to Peter’s hometown of Nahant. Many in the extended Davis family, long time townies, grew from in-laws to be her best friends. Most knew that she could be found on her stool in the kitchen or sitting in the sun in the yard, always ready to talk.
Peggy worked with children in various nursing roles in the local community. She spent nights at Children’s Hospital, took a stand on peanut allergies as the school nurse at Bell School in Marblehead, and most recently worked as a private Nurse at the Connery Elementary School in Lynn.
Settled in Nahant, it didn’t take long for Peggy to become a second mother to everyone she met. She taught CPR to the sailing program and became the lead activist in wharf jumping rights. As a mother, Peggy kept a full candy jar and an open door to anyone in town.
Visiting hours for friends and family will be held on Friday, Jan. 5, from 4 to 8 p.m., at the Bisbee-Porcella Funeral Home, 549 Lincoln Ave., SAUGUS. A funeral mass will take place on Saturday, Jan. 6, at 10 a.m., at the Saint Thomas Aquinas Church, 248 Nahant Rd., Nahant (meet at the church). In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Cam Neely Foundation (camneelyfoundation.org). Of course, All are welcome.
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