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Obituary of Margaret Ellen Riley
Margaret “Peggi” Ellen Riley (Martin) came into this world on Wednesday, November 4, 1953, in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Perhaps at one point she wanted to be called Margaret (she was named after her aunt Margaret Lindquist), but those who knew and loved her always called her Peggi (emphasis on the “i”). Peggi was an adorably gifted child, and she would make a point to tell others that her mother curled her hair to look like Shirley Temple. Because Peggi was smarter than most of us, she started her academic career at age 4 and graduated from high school in 1971. Peggi attended college for a while, and during that time she was not only serenaded by the UW tuba band on her birthday, but she met the love of her life, James (Jim) Riley. With Jim being Peggi’s soulmate, the two got married on November 29, 1974. Peggi and Jim moved to Denver, CO in 1978, and became the proud owners of birds and English Springer Spaniels. Peggi always wanted to be a mom (she hated the word “mother”), and that wish came true in 1981 when she had her daughter Jenna. Peggi was so talented at being a mom that she had her son Jon 10.5 months later in October 1982. Peggi excelled at working as an insurance underwriter, attending dog shows and taking care of puppies, showing empathy and kindness to those she encountered, and raising her children to become successful, sarcastic adults. Peggi enjoyed reading, music, Hawaii, a good stout, Arnold Swarzenegger films, her animals, and her family. For better or for worse, Peggi was admirably her unique self, which those who met her once or knew her for years will cherish forever.
Peggi was diagnosed with atypical early onset Alzheimer’s in 2018, and at no point did she stop living her life to the fullest. Peggi loved to travel with Jim and her family, and she especially loved going to Hawaii. Peggi was happy to become a grandmother in 2019, and she recognized her grandchildren regardless of the progression of her disease. In 2021, Peggi was also diagnosed with Parkinson’s. Again, Peggi continued to live her life in the capacity that she could and was always involved. Peggi lived with her husband Jim who was also her caretaker until her final trip to the hospital on April 21, 2022. Due to the nature of these diseases, Peggi made it clear that she was ready to be free. At 4:23pm on April 23, 2022, Peggi took her final breath. Peggi’s beautiful soul is free, and she can finally enjoy being with and watching her grandchildren.
Peggi was preceded in death by her father, Hollice Martin, her mother Astrid (Joyce) Martin, and her mother-in-law, Eleanor Riley. Peggi is survived by her husband of 46 years, Jim Riley, her daughter Jenna Riley and her partner Michael Hardin along with their twin daughters Kairi and Blake, and Michael’s older children Silas and Sarai, as well as Peggi’s son Jon Riley (who is an amazing teacher). Peggi is also survived by her sister Alyce Blumreich (Jim), father-in-law Harvey Riley, sister-in-law Lori Riley, along with a wonderful niece Kristin Blumreich Bastidas (Carlos), and several fantastic nephews; Scott Blumreich (Rebecca), Andy Blumreich (Mandy), and Christopher Derozier (Nathalie). Peggi is also a great aunt and is survived by many loving cousins and second cousins.
Jim, Jenna, and Jon invite family, friends, and all those who enjoyed knowing Peggi to her
Celebration of Life
Saturday, June 4, 2022 at 1:30pm
at Southglenn Country Club
1489 E Easter Ave
Centennial, CO, 80122
We will share memories, enjoy music, and have some delicious snacks.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers, you share a memory and/or photo of Peggi, enjoy your favorite beer, attend a concert, and live life with love and happiness.
Donations may also be sent to the Alzheimer’s Foundation: https://www.alz.org/?form=alz_donate
One of Peggi’s wishes was to cuddle babies in the NICU, so donations in her honor can also be made to Children’s Hospital Colorado: https://secure.childrenscoloradofoundation.org/site/Donation2?df_id=4463&mfc_pref=T&4463.donation=form1
Finally, the family would like to extend their heartfelt thanks to all the staff at Littleton Adventist Hospital who provided excellent care and ensured Peggi’s dignity and autonomy.