Marguerite (Peggy) Henshaw Sperling peacefully passed away on Sunday evening, January 20, 2019 in Saranac Lake, NY. Peggy was born on January 28, 1931 to Rosina Marguerite Ottinger Henshaw and Harold Cotton Henshaw in Philadelphia, PA.
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Peggy is survived by her son, Mark, and his wife Pam of Saranac Lake, NY; her son- in-law Bill Short of Canton, NY; and her four grandchildren and eight great- grandchildren: Rebecca (Becky) Welt McCann and her husband Jason and their sons Grady and Declan of Augusta, GA; Kassandra (Kassie) Welt Walsh and her husband Kevin and their daughters Teagan and Ellison of Huntersville, NC; Adam Sperling and his wife Erin and their daughters Claire, Cate and Nora of Charlotte, NC; and Carly Allison Sperling Morris and her husband Ben and their daughter Amelia of Denver, CO. She is also survived by a sister-in-law, Rena Sperling Goldberg of Ogdensburg, NY, and several nieces and nephews: Tobi Goldberg and her husband Jeff of Boston, MA;, Celia Polster Cheatley and her husband David and daughter Ellen of British Columbia, Canada; David Polster and his wife Genevieve Singleton and their children Ben, Amy Jean, and Rachel of British Columbia, Canada; and Alan Polster, his son Sam and his partner Lisa Larson of British Columbia; and former daughter-in-law and friend, Robin Sperling of Williamsville, NY. She was predeceased by both her parents; her parents-in-law Mayer and Anna Bennett Sperling; brothers-in-law Norman Polster and Milton K. Goldberg; her niece Sarah Polster Chambers, her great-nephew Christopher Cheatley; her sister, Elisabeth (Betty) Henshaw Polster; her husband, Bernard (Bun) S. Sperling; and her daughter, Pamela Sperling Short.
Peggy grew up attending public schools in Chestnut Hill, PA and earned her Bachelor’s Degree from St. Lawrence University in Canton, NY, where she met her husband, Bun. Peggy and Bun were married in 1950, had their first child, Pam, in 1951, and their son, Mark, in 1954. Peggy and Bun lived in Ogdensburg and the immediate area for their entire adult lives. Peggy was active in the Sperling Family business, Sperling’s Furniture Stores, until the business’s closing in 1991. In 2007, one decade after Bun’s untimely passing to ALS, Peggy decided to move away from the St. Lawrence River she and Bun both loved, to reside in Partridge Knoll in Canton, NY and be nearer to her daughter, Pam. Most recently, this past September Peggy moved to Will Rogers Village in Saranac Lake, NY to be closer to her son, Mark.
Peggy was very active throughout her life participating in numerous community activities. Notably, she joined several other local women to start the first nursery pre-school in Ogdensburg, which both of her children attended, and was a staunch supporter of Planned Parenthood of the North Country New York. She volunteered her time to numerous civic activities serving on the Board of the Remington Art Museum, Ogdensburg Tree Commission, St. Lawrence Historical Society, Ogdensburg Garden Club, Planned Parenthood of NCNY, Girl and Cub Scouting, the American Red Cross, the Ogdensburg Public Library, and the U.S. Power Squadron. Peggy was an active member of the Unitarian Universalist Church in Canton, NY, and enjoyed participating on several church committees. She also enjoyed completing crossword puzzles, watching her beloved New York Yankees, reading novels, and staying apprised of current events by attending lectures and discussions.
Peggy was a devoted mother and grandmother; she attended nearly every event of her children and her grandchildren. She could always be seen at the baseball, softball and soccer fields, ice rinks for hockey games and figure skating competitions, volley ball courts, swimming pools, and Canton and Ogdensburg auditoriums for band and choral concerts and award nights. While best known as Peggy or Peg, she was most affectionately known and loved as Mom, Gramma, and GG (Great Gramma). Friends of her children and grandchildren were always welcome in her home and were treated as family; she stayed in touch with many of Mark and Pam’s friends throughout their lives.
Peggy inherited a love of music from her parents and she played piano and sang in various choirs throughout her life. She also loved art in many forms and particularly enjoyed pottery and charcoal, pen and ink drawings. Her love for gardens and gardening was observed by all who visited any of her homes.
Funeral arrangements are in care of the Fortune-Keough Funeral Home in Saranac Lake. In keeping with her wishes, there will be no calling hours, but there will be a memorial celebration of her life in the spring in Canton, NY. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the ALS Association, Planned Parenthood of the North Country NY, or the American Cancer Society in care of the Fortune-Keough Funeral Home, 20 Church Street, Saranac Lake, NY 12983. Alternatively, planting a tree or starting and maintaining a garden would be a loving tribute to Peggy. Family and friends wishing to remember Marguerite Henshaw Sperling can sign the on-line guest book at Fortunekeoughfuneralhome.com