Margaret Lydia Simmons Hain came into the world on Christmas Day, 1927, in Hammond, Indiana, and left this world on St. Patrick’s Day, 2020, at Freeman Hospital in Joplin, Missouri. After two health emergencies in the fall, her heart was not up for another.
Little is known about Margaret’s childhood. Margaret was 3 when her mother, Naomi Blaul Simmons, entered Logansport State Hospital, and Margaret was not yet 12 when her mother died there. As her daughters, we can only imagine our mother’s scars from growing up without a mother and with her father Robert Emin Simmon’s decision to pay others to raise his daughter. Some of the surrogates were abusive by today’s standards, but Margaret loved them till the day they died.
After her 1945 graduation from George Rogers Clark High School in Hammond, Marge left Indiana and moved to a rooming house in Washington, D.C. She made many friends and spent weekends with her beloved Aunt Pearl and Uncle Victor, their daughter and her cousin Marilyn (Simmons-Phelps), and grandmother, Lydia. Margaret always remembered this time with great fondness--probably the happiest time of her life. There would be a lot of difficult years later, but Margaret could always turn to her exceptionally-loving Simmons family.
While working at the War Department, she met Richard Hain (Army Air Force). Though she had been previously engaged to another, Margaret married Richard on August 13, 1949. From this union, they had three daughters: Teresa Ann Hain (Huey), Nancy Carol Hain Shockey, and Janice Margaret. Over the years, the family lived in Romulus, NY; Aurora, IL; Lincoln, NE; St. Paul and Minneapolis, MN; Summit, NJ; and Overland Park, KS. After their 1974 divorce, Margaret bought a place in Greenbrier that would be her Overland Pk home for 40 years. Margaret started working at Woolco in 1975 (the source of her $36.44 monthly pension), where she became forever friends with co-worker Jane Hurley. When Jane passed in 2016, it left a big hole in Margaret’s heart. After Woolco ceased operations in 1982, Margaret worked at Marshall’s for several years.
In 2013, daughter Teresa and her husband Paul David Huey moved Margaret and her six cats to Vernon County, Missouri, and they are grateful the Lord gave them the opportunity to step up and do the right thing. Paul became his mother-in-law’s Knight in Shining Armor doing pretty much everything for her every single day. He continues to serve by caring for Marge’s cats, who have bonded with him as well.
Margaret said her last home was her favorite, though impaired vision kept her from seeing how pretty the woods are around the house, where the irises will be blooming soon. Margaret lost most of her sight over a decade ago and could no longer crochet, bowl, drive, or care for her cats. But she enjoyed listening to American Idol, the Weather Channel, and daytime dramas, going out to eat, and phone conversations with friends and relatives. Marge was an avid fan of the Kansas City Chiefs, Washington Redskins, the Kansas City Royals, and for one year, the Cardinals. She and Paul would often listen to games on radio, and Margaret could get quite upset when the opposing team scored.
Surviving family includes her daughters, son-in-law, the greatest cousin in the whole wide world, a grandson, two granddaughters, two great-grandsons, and feline members Bandit, Taz, Lois, and Mama Kitty Abby, who survive at the home. Though she is missed by all, we find joy in knowing that Margaret is again with her friends and reunited with her beloved Uncle Vic and Aunt Pearl, from whom she would always find the unconditional love that she often missed from others. In her 92 years, Margaret also enjoyed the love of many kitties, and is once again in the company of John Robert, Skitch, Toby, Sucky, White, Joey, Kitty Boy, Kitty Girl, Maynard, Smudge, Toonses, Midnight, Cry Baby, Callie, Ole Yeller, Puffin, Buddy, Kitten Mama, Leo, Tiggy, Freckles, and Dottie.
Margaret and many of her kitties will eventually be interred together at Rolling Acres Memorial Gardens in Parkville, Missouri, on a beautiful hillside location overlooking the pond, after a future memorial service that will take place in Johnson County, Kansas, featuring music she loved by Phil Collins as well as her favorite George Beverly Shea hymns, His Eyes are on the Sparrow and In the Garden.
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