Peggy Scott Seay "Kruger"


Last updated 2/25/2018 at 11:23pm

Our beloved Peggy Scott Seay "Kruger," née Giesela Kochmann, born in Schönberg, Germany on July 23, 1929, passed away on February 13, 2018 at the age of 88 from a sudden stroke. Hers was a true "American Dream" story. She will forever be remembered by her family and friends for her unbreakable and glowing life force, her bottomless heart, her thoughtfulness and compassion towards others, her consummate grace, her incredible courage and grit in the face of true darkness, her extraordinary hard work, and her achievement of excellence and beauty in all that she touched.

Peggy lost her mother at age 3 and earned her keep on her grandparents' and, eventually, various foster families' farms as a child. At the age of 12, she walked from Ostprignitz to Berlin, a distance of nearly 200 miles, with her Aunt Elisabeth, "Mütti."

Peggy immigrated from the American Sector of Berlin to the United States on January 23, 1953 with her only child, Harald Kochmann, and $19 to her name, after an emergency landing in Keflavik, Iceland due to engine failure. She and her son, who had just turned 3, were sponsored by the parents of her son's father to come live in California, where they eventually settled, and where Peggy, again, began a life of farm work, housekeeping and sewing.

By the age of 30, Peggy had settled in Blythe, Calif. with her son, and had married Clarence Barnes, a farm manager who adopted her son, now Harold Barnes. Peggy went to night school to improve her English and to become a bookkeeper. She got a job at a local Blythe bank, and was very proud of the work she did there, which was likewise appreciated by the bank's management and staff. Eventually, she and Clarence divorced.

Peggy then married the love of her life in 1968, George T. Scott, a magnificent man of character and a farmer, and together they farmed until he became too ill to do so. During their marriage they had many wonderful experiences together camping and fishing with their fifth-wheel travel trailer, flying model airplanes, bowling, and traveling to Germany to visit with the family she left behind.

She was an avid gardener and homemaker during this time as well, and there was always a wonderful meal to be had at their home. Their favorite place to fish and camp was Lake Mead, usually with Harold and his dog. They lived in Blythe until 1982 when they bought a home in Vista, Calif. to be closer to George's doctors in La Jolla. George left her a very bereaved widow at the age of 53.

Several years later, in 1987, she met and eventually married Col (Ret) James "Jim" S. Seay, settling with him in Fallbrook, Calif. They golfed and traveled the world together and shared many good times with their dear friends in Fallbrook. He passed unexpectedly in 1989.

After Jim's passing, Peggy eventually settled in Fallbrook with her beloved companion and life partner of 26 years, Fred J. Kruger, whom she met at the Shadowridge Golf Course in Vista. With "Fearless" Fred by her side, she continued to live her life of love and compassion for others, giving to all the people she touched, traveling the world many times, taking fabulous fishing trips, gardening, golfing, and hosting exquisite dinner parties hallmarked by deep companionship, excellent food and the raising of a good glass of champagne for a toast to close friendship and family.

She and Fred loved recounting stories about Peggy catching fish off the back of various cruise ships, only to see the fish "land" again on her dinner plate the same evening, courtesy of the ship's chef.

Peggy was preceded in death not only by the loves of her life, but also by her son Harold R. Barnes. She is survived by her granddaughter, Michelle L. Barnes, and Michelle's daughter, Greta Greenspun, residing in Lincoln, Mass. She is also survived by her younger granddaughter, Melaine Barnes-Brownlee, who lives in Edwardsburg, Mich. with her husband, Brendan Brownlee, and their children, Judah and Jacob Kountz, and Isaac and Harvest Brownlee. Peggy's Mütti's granddaughter, Andrea Tessmann, also survives Peggy, as does Andrea's son Tyrese Tessmann, both of Berlin, Germany.

A private Celebration of Life service will be held on Friday, February 23, and a private burial service will follow in April in Blythe, Calif. In lieu of flowers, please donate in Peggy's memory to any charity you associate with her.


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