Farewell to Peggy – 106 years old

By Margaret Sheard

Peggy at 105 with daughter Elizabeth (right), grand-daughter Fiona (centre back) and great grand-daughter Megan (left)
Peggy at 105 with daughter Elizabeth (right), grand-daughter Fiona (centre back) and great grand-daughter Megan (left)

Peggy McAlpine, what an amazing lady, who lived her last 9 years in Cyprus with her daughter, Elizabeth Forsyth in Karaman. On the 7th December Peggy passed away at the grand old age of 106. What an achievement to live for so many years and to have been around during the reign of 5 Monarchs and during the term of 26 Prime Ministers.

Peggy came from Stirling in Scotland, her husband Thomas died in 1980, there are 2 children, 4 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren, who must be so proud of this wonderful lady. She came to live with her daughter in North Cyprus in 2004. I didn’t know Peggy well but from the few occasions when I met and talked to her I always suspected there was a wicked glint in her eye and that she had a brilliant sense of humour.

Peggy Paragliding
Peggy Paragliding

Here in North Cyprus most of the population are aware of Peggy’s daring stunts and there cannot be anything but admiration for a lady who on her 100th birthday did a tandem paraglide which put her into the Guinness Book of World Records. This was then topped by a 101 year old from Utah, USA and Peggy, not to be outdone, did another tandem paraglide in 2012 at the age of 104 thus regaining her world title. Both of her paragliding exploits were with Highline Air Tours and her pilot on both occasions was Ozgur Gokasan who must have felt as proud as Peggy did.

I think it was on Peggy’s 102nd birthday that she chose to celebrate by riding as a passenger on a Harley Davidson.

I looked up some detail about Peggy on the internet and found that she had always liked heights and in the 1920’s she made an aircraft flight which in those days was probably a pretty daring thing to do I would think. She hadn’t attempted other sporting activities involving heights in her earlier years but her grandchildren persuaded her to do a bungee jump at the Essex show, when she was a mere 80 years of age. It seems that Peggy’s daring increased as she got older.

Peggy's 105th birthday with her guests and birthday cake
Peggy’s 105th birthday with her guests and birthday cake

I am including some pictures of 2 birthday celebrations we attended in recent years which were arranged by the Royal British Legion Kyrenia Branch, together with some pictures from her 2 paragliding feats. You might like to look at the Youtube video of Peggy’s last paraglide.

We have been advised by Sylvia Austin that the funeral of “Peggy” Margaret McAlpine will be held at Karaman Village Cemetery on Friday 13th December at 2pm. Flowers and/or donations for Tulips please. Afterwards we will raise a glass at Levant Restaurant. If you would like to say a few words or would like more details please contact Sylvia Austin on 0533 848 5780 or email sylviaustin@gmail.com

Farewell to Peggy, an amazing lady, who will be very much missed in North Cyprus.  Rest in Peace.

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