In Memoriam: Nancy Marks Perkins ’50

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Devoted alumna Nancy Marks Perkins ’50 died peacefully at the age of eighty-five on Saturday, Nov. 30, 2013, in Peterborough, New Hampshire, surrounded by family.

She graduated from Mount Holyoke College in 1950 with a BA in English and in 1972 received an MA in education from Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio. For many years she taught high school English in Cincinnati, Ohio; St. Louis, Missouri; and Peterborough, New Hampshire.

An ardent alumna, Perkins contributed to the College in many ways. From 1989 through 1994, she served on the Mount Holyoke College Board of Trustees, and from 1988 through 1991, she was president of the Alumnae Association of Mount Holyoke College. She also was president of alumnae clubs of Cincinnati, Ohio, and St. Louis, Missouri, and was a regional admissions coordinator for the Midwest. Additionally, Perkins was an active member of the New Hampshire alumnae club and the class of 1950 committee.

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Llamarada 1950

On behalf of Mount Holyoke, she traveled to almost every continent as an “ambassador of goodwill,” making stops to places including Japan, Greece, China, and Antarctica. In 1990, Perkins received the Alumnae Association Medal of Honor for her leadership and for bringing “excitement and renewed appreciation for Mount Holyoke” through her “warmth and interest in others.”

Ms. Perkins is survived by her husband, Linn Bruce Perkins, and her children, Carl Perkins, Anne Margaret Perkins, Priscilla Perkins Moore ’79, and John Samuel Perkins. She is also survived by her daughter-in-law, Donna Bobbish ’79, and niece, Kristen A. Hientz-Perkins ’03.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, January 11, 2014, at All Saints Episcopal Church, Peterborough. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Monadnock at Home, P.O. Box 422, Jaffrey, NH 03452; the Monadnock Area Transitional Shelter, 46 Concord St., Peterborough, NH 03458; All Saints Episcopal Church, 51 Concord St., Peterborough, NH 03458; and the Monadnock Community Hospital, 452 Old Street Road, Peterborough, NH 03458.

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8 responses to “In Memoriam: Nancy Marks Perkins ’50”

  1. Karen Kratky Lehrer says:

    I knew Nancy Perkins in St. Louis, in my youth, as a friend to one of her daughters. Nancy was a mother who could do it all, from keeping a home, preparing great meals, involved in her children’s’ schools, and she loved her kids. The 1970’s in St. Louis was a changing canvas, like other U.S. Cities. Yet, Mrs. Perkins remained committed to her values … Her family… And her friends. She was influential to my pursuing psychology and community volunteer efforts through out my life. Always my pleasure remembering Nancy Perkins and her wonderful family.

  2. Sally Lemaire '68 says:

    I had the pleasure of working in partnership with Nancy Marks Perkins. She was a volunteer’s volunteer and left a legacy of commitment, love and advocacy for the alumnae of Mount Holyoke College.

    Sally J. Lemaire ’68
    Executive Director Alumnae Association1991-2003

  3. Christine Gora '98 says:

    Nancy was one of the most kindest souls I’ve ever known and a woman who never feared change. In the 90s, I had helped her set up one of her first computers at her home in Peterborough and she was online and communicating with her vast network of friends and family in no time! I will miss her joyful Christmas cards and photos, but mostly I will miss the cheer that every interaction with her has brought me. Nancy’s spirit will live in my heart, and I imagine in many others as well.

    • Barbara Johnson Rugg says:

      Nancy was a dear friend. We were both English majors (Wouldn’t she have scolded you for “most kindest”?) but didn’t really get acquainted until we, with our husbands, took a Mount Holyoke sponsored tour of Switzerland many years later, in 1986. Just proves it’s never too late to make MHC connections!
      Bobby Rugg
      P.S. She’d have told me that my last sentence isn’t a sentence!

  4. Heather Tyrie Wilcauskas '64 says:

    It is with great sadness that I read of Nancy’s passing. She and I crossed paths many times over the years, since I lived in St. Louis three times between 1968 and 1977, and was active with the MHC Club each time. After that, we would see each other periodically at on-campus meetings. Nancy is one of those rare people who make everyone feel special and appreciated and she will be sorely missed in the communities she has left behind.

  5. Stephanie Hersey Kolman '62 says:

    A picture says more than a thousand words. Just look at Nancy’s beautiful face and you can see without any words the warmth and devotion she had for others and Mt. Holyoke College. Our paths crossed when we were both in St. Louis. I was a young married woman with small children, trying to re -acclimate into another new community after several previous moves. Reaching out to alumni was always a touch stone. Nancy immediately took me under her wing, became a friend and remained that way after several moves by both of us. I have never known anyone so dedicated to the college and it’s betterment. Just listing her accomplishments and offices held doesn’t nearly say it all. Nancy threw herself into every one of them with commitment, enthusiasm and love. She was always an inspiration to me in her love of life and the people around her. The world has lost one of it’s best and I will miss her.

  6. Phyllis Carlson Freeman says:

    Nancy Marks Perkins was not only a devoted alumna, but I found that when she was President
    of the AA, she was a great listener. She understood that singling out one reuning class was
    fun for that class, but it was infinitely better to allow all classes at reunion to be recognized.
    I always admired Nancy for listening to my plea, and then doing something about it. Hence
    all of the classes at reunion can toot their own horns and feel really great about their own class!
    Thank you for all you have done for our college, Nancy.
    Phyllis Carlson Freeman ’59

  7. […] Remembering Nancy Marks Perkins ’50 Devoted alumna Nancy Marks Perkins ’50 died peacefully at the age of eighty-five surrounded by family. A memorial service will be held on Saturday, January 11, 2014. Read more» […]

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