Lives that Speak: Margaret McCoy
By The FCNL Team on 09/05/2012 @ 11:15 AM
This is a guest post from former FCNL Field Program Secretary Kathy Guthrie.
The world lost a great voice and leader in late August when a woman with intelligence, good manners and good humor passed away in Pittsburgh.
I have known Margaret McCoy for 45 years—she welcomed me to Pittsburgh and the Friends meeting when I was a young mother and newcomer to the area. Over the years I came to respect her and regard her with much affection. She was a mentor to many of us who were working for peace in Pittsburgh. She and I shared many rides to meetings of the Peace Committee of Pittsburgh Friends Meeting, and I learned how committed Margaret was to the work of so many groups in Pittsburgh and the Quaker world.
Margaret and Dick encouraged my interest in FCNL and in attending the annual meeting, and to report back to the Pittsburgh Friends what I had learned. In fact, Margaret was instrumental in my getting the dream job of my life, when I was moving to Washington from Pittsburgh with my husband Tim Barner. She suggested to an FCNL staff person that I would be a good candidate for a position, and sure enough, there was an opening. That was the perfect job for me for the next nearly 17 years. Without Margaret’s good word, I doubt that I would have become FCNL’s Field Program Secretary, and worked at a job which I loved.
Margaret’s commitment to work to improve her world continued all her life. She worked so hard to bring about the retirement community where she lived for 30 years. She also saw a need for an Alzheimer’s facility in later years, and helped to head the campaign to bring it into being. She was always our key contact at Sherwood Oaks. Whenever we wanted to visit, she would always get a group together for lunch or a program.
I am so grateful to have known Margaret, both personally and as a staff person for the Friends Committee on National Legislation. She was truly a role model