Peggy Welch

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The dictionary defines "heroine" as "a woman of great courage." Eddie Rickenbacker said "Courage is doing what you're afraid to do. There can be no courage unless you're scared."

Who is PEGGY WELCH? Her mother died when Peggy was very young. She grew up with an alcoholic father. She is a single mother with two children. She works in a large patriarchal corporation and barely has enough financially to meet the demands of raising a family. She has before- and after-school childcare but no one to turn to when her children are sick and can't go to school. She struggles to handle both work and family -- often staying up to the wee hours to get "caught up" for the day. She wants her children to be able to be themselves and find their own path in life -- not to meet expectations set by their mother. This may sound like many women today. It is. But not every woman constantly admits her fears – financial, employment, social, parenthood -- and moves forward through them. Many in their minds become victims of circumstance. Many refuse to see their fears. Many become centers of control to minimize their own fear -- and in the process don't allow others to live their lives to the fullest. Peggy feels all her fears, breathes deeply, and takes the next step she sees -- however small. This is courage. I not only admire her, but Peggy is a constant reminder of what is possible. She is not famous or rich. She doesn't have a presence that puts others in awe of her. She is real. She continuously works at her own personal growth and compassionately supports the growth of others. In my book, Peggy is truly a heroine. Peggy, thank you for touching my life.

-- Kathie McClellan