Jean Irene Macdonald Peckham, 92, of Middletown, RI passed away peacefully on Tuesday, August 6, 2019 at Newport Hospital following a brief illness. She was born on September 23, 1926 in Trenton, NJ and moved to RI with her parents, Alpin Hunter Macdonald and Anna Elizabeth Harding, at an early age. She was predeceased by her husband, Julian (“Dede”) F. Peckham Jr., her parents and a brother. She is survived by her children, Nancy Powers of Mansfield, MA, Betty Wallace (Jack) of Atlanta, GA, and Julian (“Jay”) F. Peckham III (Robin) of Middletown, four grandchildren Jennifer Wallace, Jeff Wallace (Mallory), Heather Peckham, and Julian F. Peckham IV (Kate), and six great grandchildren (Connor Peckham, Julian Peckham V, Wyatt Peckham, Logan Peckham, Harper Wallace and Carter Wallace). She is also survived by a cousin, William C. Koch (Debbie) of Nashville, TN, and many nieces and nephews.
Jean was a longtime member of Calvary United Methodist Church, and a former member of the Rainbow Girls, Rotary-Anns and JayCeettes. She also participated in local garden clubs, bridge groups and a bowling league. She graduated from Rogers High School in Newport and attended the University of Rhode Island, leaving to marry her husband when he returned from Army service in Europe after the end of WWII. She was a teacher’s aide for several years in kindergarten classes in Middletown and was an expert in knitting fancy gloves, scarfs, baby clothing and decorative items for family and friends.
Jean’s passion was her family, taking every opportunity to spend time enjoying their love and attending their activities and celebrations. She and her husband enjoyed traveling within the USA, especially to Civil War battle sites on the way to the warmth of FL during February. An avid Red Sox fan, she loved watching their ball games and rooting for all the Boston / New England sports teams.
Jean was a loving, caring and strong woman who was very proud of her Scottish heritage and loyal to friends and family - she had a long and wonderful life and will be sorely missed by all who knew and loved her.
Calling hours will be Saturday, August 10 from 4:00 - 6:00 pm at Memorial Funeral Home, 375 Broadway, Newport, RI. A memorial “Celebration of Life” service will be held at Calvary United Methodist Church on Saturday, September 28 at 2 pm.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Arthritis Foundation, 1355 Peachtree Street, Suite 600, Atlanta GA 30309, or to Calvary United Methodist Church, 200 Turner Road, Middletown RI 02842.
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