Peggy McCleary of Perry


Peggy McCleary, 84, of Perry passed away Saturday, Sept. 16, 2023, at the MercyOne Medical Center in West Des Moines, Iowa.

A celebration of her life will be held Sunday, Sept. 24 from 2-4 p.m., with sharing of memories at 4 p.m. at the Carris Family Funeral Home and Cremation Care in Perry. A private graveside service will be in the Pleasant Hill Cemetery near Linden, Iowa.

Peggy Kay McCleary was born April 25, 1939, in Dawson, Iowa, to Bonnetta and Stanley Wernli.

She married her high school sweetheart, Robert McCleary, on Feb. 8, 1959. They lived a life together full of love, family and adventure.

Peg attended the School of Cosmetology in Des Moines and became a hairdresser.

Soon after the birth of their first child, they moved to Anchorage, Alaska, where they had two more children. The family made their way to Washington State for the birth of their fourth child. Eventually, they found their way back home to Iowa.

Peg enjoyed hobbies that included studying for her pilot’s license, knitting, sewing clothes for her kids and their Barbies, playing cards, reading, camping and sitting around a campfire.

However, her greatest passion in life was being a mother. She cared for her late sister’s children and provided in-home daycare to kids, who she loved and cared for like her own.

She was a strong woman who raised her children and grandchildren to be strong as well.

Peg and Bob enjoyed retirement, including a period traveling and living full-time in their RV.

“I’ve had a good life,” she said shortly before peacefully passing on with family at her bedside on Sept. 16, 2023.

Peg will be dearly missed by her husband, Bob; her children, Laurie Carnahan, Tina Turner, Lee McCleary and Janette Hanna; her grandchildren, Michelle and Jon Illian, Tracy Carnahan, Kyle and Amanda Carnahan and Cat Hanna; and her great-grandchildren, Bryson, Ellie, Camille, Carter, Karsyn, Kallie and Owen.

Peg was preceded in death by her parents; her brothers, Leroy, Don and Bob; her sisters, Joyce, Colleen and Marjorie; and her granddaughter, Alisha Carnahan.

In lieu of flowers, donations to the Perry Public Library may be left at the funeral home. Online condolences may be left at


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