Mrs. Margaret F. Smith

margaret smith

July 30, 2023

Born in: Toms River, New Jersey
Resided in: Vienna, Virginia

Margaret F. Smith of Vienna, VA, passed away on July 30, 2023 after her health declined following a major surgery. She is survived by her son Matthew and daughter-in-law Anna; son Mark and daughter-in-law Alicia; grandchildren Katharine, Clayton, and Charlie; sister Mary Ann Ferguson; niece Margaret Ferguson-Maltzman; and nephew Daniel Ferguson-Maltzman. She is predeceased by her husband of 53 years, LTC David B. Smith.

Friends knew her as Peggy. She was born in 1945 to William and Mary Ferguson in Toms River, NJ, beginning her lifelong love of all things Jersey, especially the shore. Peggy overcame the loss of both of her parents at a tender age to live a full life of adventure, learning, service, and love. She studied Education and Spanish at Montclair State College and later earned a Masters in Special Education from Leslie College. She held a number of teaching and other jobs and did them well—but her life was shaped more by her relationships than her professions. While still an undergraduate, she met the love of her life, David, an Army officer. They continued their courtship while he was deployed to Vietnam and she was an exchange student in Japan—he visited her there while on leave—and they married in 1967. Until David’s passing in late 2020, he and Peggy were apart from each other only once, during David’s second deployment to Vietnam.

Peggy and her family lived for many years in Greece, where David served multiple tours over two decades as a foreign area officer and military attaché. A distinguished honors graduate of the Defense Language Institute, Peggy remained fluent in Greek throughout her life. As David’s stalwart partner, she became a skilled and engaging host and diplomat who nurtured enduring friendships and won admirers wherever she went. They traveled extensively in the US and abroad, sharing a love of culture, the arts, food, and history.

Peggy’s boundless energy and varied interests also characterized her approach to service. When her children were young, she took on leadership roles in their schools and in scouting. She served for years as a Stephens minister in her Lutheran church, and in prison ministries in Athens. On election days stateside, she could often be found working as a poll officer.

As a member over 23 years in the Vienna Women’s Club, Peggy marshaled club support for the Fairfax Lamb Center and for Second Story, a charity that helps young women in crisis, and she participated in education and advocacy to combat human trafficking in our community. An adventurous and skilled cook, Peggy earned a reputation as the club’s “foodie,” catering Christmas concerts at Wolf Trap, helping at the club’s Vienna Harvest bazaar and ice cream socials, and coordinating and hosting elaborate internationally-themed dinners.

Peggy proudly served alongside David in leadership roles with the Vienna Host Lions Club, including several years as its vice president, and as club president in 2016—when she also was named the chapter’s Lion of the Year. A Melvin Jones Fellow, she regularly volunteered with the Lions’ eyeglass-recycling efforts and helped staff a pop-up clinic to provide free vision care to impoverished communities in rural southwestern Virginia. Peggy was a familiar presence at signature Vienna Lions events, including annual Charter Nights and holiday celebrations, tree sales, the music scholarship competition, and fundraising. Fellow Lions may best remember Peggy for her creative and meticulous planning, with David, of the club’s annual Mystery Trips, in which club members and friends boarded charter buses for secret itinerary and dining destinations.

In good times and bad, love was a defining characteristic of Peggy’s life. She cherished her family and friends, and was particularly overjoyed when with her three grandchildren, supporting their interests and fostering new ones at museums, parks and historical sites, the theater, and her favorite restaurants.
We loved Peggy Smith and her adventurous spirit, remarkable intellect, unending curiosity, and fascination with nature. We remember her generosity and encouragement, her letters and postcards, her laughter, and her loyalty. We will miss her holidays, her hospitality and delicious meals, her beautiful gardens, and the creativity, whimsy, wit, and joy she shared with others, doing the things she loved.

Peggy’s life will be celebrated on November 20, 2023, at 3 p.m. at the Fort Myer Old Post Chapel, followed by burial at Arlington National Cemetery. Peggy suggested that those wishing to make a charitable donation in her memory might consider Fisher House, Tunnels to Towers Foundation, or the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation


Service: November 20, 2023 3:00 pm

Ft. Myer Old Post Chapel
204 Lee Ave
Fort Myer, VA 22211


Celebration of Life: November 19, 2023 2:00 pm

Money & King Funeral Home
171 W. Maple Ave.
Vienna, VA 22180


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  1. Peggy left the world a better place for sure. I had the privilege of knowing and loving her since the day she was born ,and we had a close relationship throughout our lives. I will miss you so much, Peggy. She grew up with an empathy towards others while also preserving a healthy sense of who she was.She had a long and happy marriage to her wonderful husband David and she enjoyed many close and long lasting friendships with people she encountered in every stage of her life. She loved her sons Matthew and Mark so much, and her daughters-in-law Anna and Alicia as well.How she doted on Catharine, Clayton and Charlie , enjoying their unique personalities and interests. My own children Margaret and Daniel remember the wonderful vacations we went on together and what a loving, special aunt she was to them. Goodbye, Peggy…Love, your sister Mary Ann

  2. Peggy’s full and engaged life was so beautifully captured by her family’s words. I enjoyed her gift of friendship for many years, having met in the Vienna Woman’s Club. I always admired Peggy’s compassion for her community and was in awe hearing her describe the Lions Club pop-up clinics in rural southwestern Virginia where people would line up for hours in advance for the dental visits and other life-sustaining services. On another note, I smiled at the reference to postcards. Peggy and David had strict rules for their postcard club, which was a lot of fun. Peggy was a lot of fun, with her zany humor and zest for learning and adventure. Her many friends will miss her deeply.

  3. Peggy and David Smith were two of the kindest people we ever met. They were such good company, and we loved spending time with them. Lions Club Mystery Trips stand out, which Peggy and David would plan and act as hosts, developing annual trivia quizzes to keep us entertained on the bus and providing pins that were “Fun Meters” and encouraging us to keep them cranked up! We have such great memories and we will miss them both.

  4. Robert and Susan Conrad say:
    October 27, 2023 at 8:41 pm

    After reading other’s thoughts of Peggy from the family’s obituary which captured her essence and was overflowing with love, the legacy of Peggy, the comments of others citing special connections, what more could be said except that she was God’s gift to each one of us, the community and the world. Every human being is unique, but Peggy was the only person who encompassed every possible characteristic of God’s delight. Never a thought of herself, always love for others. She remembered us wherever we were posted in the world with a clever card or funny item Our visit with Peggy and David in Greece was filled with classic Peggy. We miss her beyond expression. Thinking of you now in light and peace.

  5. Linda and I have such wonderful memories of David and Peggy and we both appreciate their presence in our lives over so many years. Peggy and Gail Cantu were the ones from Holy Trinty who introduced us back in 1996. We are so thankful that they took the initiative to setup that first date.
    Peggy was a very intelligent woman with a great sense of humor. We will always remember her stories as a new attaché wife living in a Greek hotel with two youngsters for an extended period while awaiting assignment to US embassy housing. It was quite a challenging environment, but Peggy handled it exceptionally well. Peggy and David were both very generous in sharing their knowledge and enthusiasm for Greek history and culture. David would readily admit that Peggy was the better Greek speaker because she was the one working directly with local Greeks to arrange dinners, events and ceremonies. They both loved to travel, and we looked forward to receiving postcards from their latest adventures. Yes, there were rules about sending postcards.
    Peggy was an exceptional hostess and we looked forward to her special dinners at Christmas and Easter but also the Big Game gatherings for Super Bowl. She was a fabulous cook and really enjoyed entertaining guests.
    We will miss celebrating with her. We are grateful that she leaves a wonderful legacy of two sons and their wives plus three grandchildren. She was so excited and proud that Katharine was starting at Virginia Tech this year. We feel so blessed to be part of Peggy’s extended family and will miss her joyful, loving presence in the years ahead. She was a truly remarkable woman.

  6. I am so grateful to be this wonderful lady’s son. She blessed us all in countless and special ways, and left us so many good memories and an example of how to live. My family I love and miss her, and my father, more than I can express. But we are comforted to know that she is reunited in fellowship with all the people of God from every age, and that her passing here is not the end.
    Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints. (Psalms 116:15)
    I thank my God upon every remembrance of you. (Philippians 1:3-11)

  7. I am so grateful to be this wonderful lady’s son. She blessed us all in countless and special ways, and left us so many good memories and an example of how to live. My family and I love and miss her, and my father, more than I can express. But we are comforted to know that she is reunited in fellowship with all the people of God from every age, and that her passing here is not the end.
    Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints. (Psalms 116:15)
    I thank my God upon every remembrance of you. (Philippians 1:3-11)

  8. I was blessed to know Peggy from the Vienna Women’s Club. She always had a smile on her face and she always took time to say “hello” and ask me how my day was going. My Mother was also a member of the Vienna Women’s Club and was was friends with your dear Mother. Sending love and prayers during this difficult time.
    Lisa Moffett

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