Margaret (Peggy) Helen Dollinger

Margaret (Peggy) Helen Dollinger “is off full sail on the next adventure” after passing on Wednesday Nov. 27 at Northern Lights Services, Washburn, WI. Peggy was born July 4, 1944 in St Luke’s hospital Duluth, MN to Gunnard A. Foss and Helen Vedo Foss. Peggy was an eternal Duluth girl attending Duluth public schools including Duluth East High School. Peggy worked at Lutsen resort and Perkins Pancake house to fund her attendance and graduation from UMD in 1967 with a BA in education.

Peggy enjoyed travel and exploration and was an explorer at an early age taking a year off of college to live and work in Europe. She attended the ’64 winter Olympics in Austria and hitch hiked with an accomplice to the Iberian peninsula and across the strait to Tangier before returning to her au-pair job in Garmish-Partenkirchen. Graduation from UMD (just down the street from home where any cost conscious Norske flikka would go) followed with a Thelma and Louise trip with a high school girlfriend to AZ and Mazatlán Mexico resulted in her finding romantic interest with a future Caterpillar employee (not Rex) who talked her into taking her first teaching job in Peoria, IL.

While teaching in Peoria she met her future husband, Rex. After one year of teaching Peg returned to Duluth to work for the Duluth Tribune pursuing her interest in journalism. But the separation was too great and the couple wed on Dec.28, 1968 in 100 in of snow and minus 28 degree temperatures in, where else but, Duluth. Peoria was the couple’s primary residence (with 3 years in Belgium and 4 years in Switzerland for Rex’s job with Cat) for the next 35 years before retiring to Bayfield, WI in 2002.

Peggy loved her family, the outdoors, dogs, cats, and a questioning mind. Hiking, skiing, boating, painting, reading and learning were her favorite pastimes. Learning and teaching were critical to Peg and she completed a Masters degree in special education and amassed an additional 100 hours of credited study at the Illinois Central College where she was on teaching staff in adult education . She always wanted to be a business person and operated a choose and cut Christmas tree farm in Peoria, noted for its spectacular wreaths made by Peggy, for fifteen years. Four years of the operation Peg managed while living Geneva, Switzerland and commuting for planting, trimming and making wreaths and selling trees. In addition Peg was one of the editors of a publication by the Geneva America Womens Club entitled One Day Walks Around Geneva. She and Rex were responsible for checking all of the trails to make sure the directions, distances and difficulty levels were correct.

With retirement and moving to Bayfield she designed and built the home or her dreams, on the Lake she loved, and on the Brownstone trail which she loved. She also opened a photography and picture framing business taking advantage of her keen eye for color and contrast. Exposure to the local artists led her to training opportunities in watercolor painting which became her most recent accomplishment.

Peg was preceded in death by her parents and an older sister Lynda (Scott) Culley ( April 2019) of Superior WI and St Petersburg, FL. She is survived by her husband Rex Dollinger (aka Keeper’s Dad) of Bayfield, son Matthew (Amanda) of Chicago, IL and granddaughters Danika(5) and Josaphine (3), brother Jack (Madeline) Foss of Minnetonka Beach, MN, Niece Cindy Scott McDonnell (Brad) of Orono, MN, Nephew Erik Scott (Paula) of Maple Grove, MN, and Keeper the dog, keeper of Chequamegon Rd.

A celebration of Margaret’s life is being planned for mid 2020 in Bayfield followed by interment in Oneota cemetery in Peg’s beloved Duluth, MN.

Memorials are encouraged to Alzheimer’s Association.

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