Longtime Revere resident Margaret “Peggy” (Furlong) White recently celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded by more than 50 well-wishers, including her brother, children, five grandchildren, six great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, grand-nieces, grand-nephews and friends, including Ethel (Ferretti) Toomey, a life long dear friend and bridesmaid in Peggy’s wedding. The festivities took place at Eventide Home, in Quincy, MA, where she has lived since 2009. It captured Peggy’s ageless spirit perfectly with dancing and singing all the old tunes that she knows so well. Janet Case, her daughter, jokingly said, “We took it down a notch from her 90th birthday celebration. That year, she wanted to travel to New York City to see the Rockettes! Let’s just say she’s a hard act to follow.”
Born in 1912 to Mary and Michael Furlong, the family moved from Orient Heights to Endicott Avenue in Beachmont, where Peggy was a member of the Revere High Class of 1929. It’s there that she met Edward White Jr. But it wasn’t until they worked together at the Suburban Electric Company, in Revere, that he won her heart. So on April 19th, 1940, they were married at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Beachmont and eventually had three children: Edward III, Karen and Janet. Her husband, a former city councilor and mayor of Revere, died in 1965. She is also sister to Bob Furlong and the late Beatrice Furlong, both of Revere, and the late Thomas Furlong of Winthrop.
Peggy has had a very active and fulfilling life. One of her accomplishments was being a founding member of the Immaculata Guild for the Immaculate Conception School. She was always doing something fun and exciting, like the Charleston in minstrel shows sponsored by Immaculate Conception Parish, with her very good friend Mary Reardon, or playing bridge everyTuesday with a group of twelve girlfriends, come rain, sleet or snow. They even played the night of the November 9th,1965 blackout, in Nahant, because it was the only place that had lights in the area. In the 40’s and 50’s, you could find her and Edward kicking up their heels, on a Saturday night, at the Knights of Columbus dances. A highlight in her life and one of her fondest memories was when attended John F Kennedy’s Inaugural Ball in 1960.
She retired from her career as Assistant Clerk of Courts at Chelsea District Court, and is admired by all who know her for her warm heart, ready smile, and keen wit. Recognizing these attributes, her grandson Edward R. White IV dedicated his doctoral thesis in Physics to his grandmother with these words:
“For my grandmother Nana. If I was half as smart as you are today, I’d have finished this a long time ago.”