Saturday, July 20, 2024

Peggy R. Thompson, 77

Peggy R. Thompson (Andrews Mortuary and Crematory)

WILMINGTON — Peggy Ritter Thompson died peacefully on June 8, 2024, at the Dr. Robert M. Fales Hospice Pavilion with her daughter holding her hand and gently supporting her transition. Born to Margaret & Fred Ritter on October 23, 1946, Peggy’s life was a tapestry of dedication, love, and service.

Peggy was predeceased by her parents; her brother, Fred Ritter; Jenn’s father, Bob Workman; and her beloved husband, Cecil Thompson, Jr.

Peggy is survived by her only child, Jenn Workman; her lifelong best friend/sister-in-law, Jackie Ritter; her niece, Angie Nielsen (JB); her beloved great nieces, Olivia & Emma Forbes; her nephew, Fred Ritter (Shannon) and children Hannah & Lucas; and many special members of Cecil’s family.

A graduate of Fayetteville High School in 1964, mom’s desire for a life of service led her to Fayetteville Technical Institute, where she earned her ADN (Associate Degree in Nursing). She began her career as a registered nurse in Wilmington, NC, at Cape Fear Memorial Hospital in 1978. She later worked for Gerald Points, MD, before beginning her 30+ year career as a home health nurse with Comprehensive Home Health Care (later renamed Interim Health). In 1989, she was the sole recipient in North Carolina of the Great 100, a prestigious award given to nurses who demonstrate excellence in the profession. It was obvious to everyone who knew my mom that she was devoted to and truly loved her job, and that she cared for her patients with dignity and compassion.

Mom’s life outside of her career was rich with the simple pleasures she cherished. A passionate gardener, her yard was a vibrant canvas of colors from plants, flowers, and vegetables. She loved bird-watching, and her bird and deer feeders were always full. Mom never met an animal she did not love and/or try to rescue; growing up, there were frequent stray kittens, squirrels, bunnies, and ducks in our home. She fiercely loved and spoiled all of her many pets over the years. Weekends were mostly spent on the Intracoastal Waterway on the boat with Cecil, Jenn, and family, as boating and beaching were two of her favorite pastimes. Mom loved happy hour and grilling steaks on her back deck, and Jimmy Buffett could often be heard singing from the speakers.

Mom was a member of the Hampstead Garden Club and she also devoted her time volunteering every week at the Zimmer Cancer Center. She was a loyal member of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church for more than three decades where she served on the Vestry. She could often be found shopping at Belks, her favorite store, and enjoying happy hour with Jenn at Bonefish Grill. Mom was always classy and dressed to impress; her outfits, makeup, and accessories never disappointed.

Although the grief feels insurmountable now, we thankfully have so many hilarious stories and memories to help us remember mom and all that she offered. Her life was a testament to the beauty of a life well-lived, the patients she healed, and the love she shared.

Immediate family will share a private ceremony to scatter mom’s ashes in the Intracoastal Waterway since that was a place she treasured. There will be a Celebration of Life held at a later date to properly celebrate my mom. Please email celebrationoflifeforpeggy@yahoo.com if you would like details on the event.

I will be eternally grateful to the staff at the Lower Cape Fear LifeCare Care Center for the delicate compassion given to my mom during her final days- I have never witnessed such elite care. She was given all of the dignity that she deserved, and I will never forget that.

If you feel so inclined, please consider a donation in my mom’s name to the Eastern Carolina Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association at https://www.alz.org/nc/donate.

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