Margaret M. “Peg” Gorham (née Mathauer), 79, passed away peacefully at home on Friday, March 18, after a long struggle with cancer. For 46 years she was married to the love of her life, George V. Gorham, who died in 2004. Born in Upper Darby, PA, she lived in Pennsylvania, Tennessee, New Jersey, Illinois, Indiana, and for many years in North Andover, Massachusetts, where she and George ran Gorham Hardware. Sharing a strong commitment to family, community, and God, they raised seven children. Finally, in 1996, Peg and George realized their dream of moving to Fripp Island.
Peg loved her life on Fripp, the embrace of the Fripp family, and the chance to spend time with her sisters, Mary Ann DiSerafino and Barbara Ulrich. She derived great joy from singing in the Holy Cross Mission Church and Fripp Island Chapel choirs, supporting the Fripp Island Friends of Music, dressing in character for book club, laughing with friends at Friday night beach club, kayaking through the ocean creeks, and spending time with grandchildren.
Peg had several careers, including teacher, homemaker, author, small business owner, and interior decorator. For eighteen years, she ran Sea Island Decorating with her sister Barbara, and adored her work and clients. She enjoyed several trips to Europe with family and friends, and orchestrated family reunions in Montana, Colorado, and Fripp Island.
She is survived by her sisters: Mary Ann DiSerafino and husband Rick, of Cary, North Carolina and Barbara Ulrich and husband Tom, of San Antonio, Texas; seven children: Patricia Gorham and husband Edward Panetta, of Atlanta, Georgia, Kathleen Hayden and husband Joseph, of Madison, Maine, Jeanne Steele and husband Carl, of Bedford, New Hampshire, Eileen Olszewski and husband John, of Norwich, Vermont, David Gorham and wife Deborah, of Bradford, Massachusetts, Steven Gorham and wife Dorothy, of Andover, Massachusetts, and Richard Gorham, also of Andover; fifteen grandchildren, each of whom she adored: Margaret and Eleanor Panetta, Jessica, Theresa, Joseph III and Christopher Hayden, Asha and Dariya Steele, Jack, Harrison and Alexander Olszewski, Jacqueline, Matthew, Oliver and Brigitte Gorham; several nieces, nephews, and a large extended family.
Peg was blessed with a tremendous outpouring of love from friends, caregivers, and the community who supported her in life and through her illness.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at Holy Cross Mission Church on St. Helena Island at 11 o'clock Saturday, April 9t followed by a reception at the Fripp Island Community Center and interment of ashes at the Fripp Island Columbarium.
In lieu of flowers, the family invites donations to the Holy Cross Mission Church or to Fripp Island Friends of Music.