Peggy Jo Cassel (Clanton) passed away quietly early Monday morning, September 19, 2022, in Labelle, FL. While her family is deeply saddened by their unexpected loss they also feel comforted that the Lord didn’t allow her to linger and suffer and that she is now reunited with her beloved husband, Charles Robert Cassel.
Born in Tuscaloosa, AL (Roll Tide!) on January 10, 1950 to parents Thomas and Leona (McArthur) Clanton, Peggy Jo was the bossy big sister to her brothers, Tommy Lee and Jimmy Clanton. Even though they may have fought like cats and dogs growing up, they were also each other’s fiercest defenders and protectors and loved each other immensely throughout their lives.
Peggy married the love of her life, Charles Cassel, on May 29, 1968. Theirs was a relationship full of romance, passion, and fun. As they shared life’s sometimes chaotic ups and downs, they created a strong marriage, a close family, and a wonderful life with each other. Together they lovingly raised their daughters, Missy and Vickey, first in Alabama then in Bonita Springs, FL, where they relocated during the 1970’s. Although Peggy loved her family deeply and led a full life, she never fully recovered from the loss of her Charles in 1987. Their daughters find great comfort knowing their parents are finally together again.
Peggy worked hard throughout her life but always with a positive outlook and her quirky sense of humor. She often told hilarious stories of the years she worked at Olympia Mills in Alabama with her best friend, Linda. (Think Lavern & Shirley from the 1970’s tv show, only a little racier and more outrageous!) In Florida, she worked for many years at Hartley’s, a local small-town variety/hardware store, where everyone knew her as friendly, intelligent, hardworking, and dependable. In later years she worked a variety of jobs, one of the more adventurous positions being as a cook on a commercial shrimp boat. When not working, Peggy loved camping, canoeing, and going to the lake or beach (anything outdoors really, as long as it was with her family and friends). She was also very creative, skillfully doing anything crafty she set her mind to; but she was especially known for her elaborate crocheted creations that she always gifted to family and friends. She was a voracious reader who read anything and everything but she enjoyed mysteries and true-crime the most. Even in her quiet moments she was busy, if she wasn’t crocheting or reading, she was completing complicated puzzles in one of her many crossword puzzle books. Although Peggy eventually needed to move to a facility in Labelle, FL, for extended-care after a tragic event left her unable to live on her own, she still enjoyed an active social life, playing Bingo every chance she got (she loved her Bingo!) and enthusiastically joining in on all the many activities and events available at Orchid Cove. Her family always felt blessed to have had so many good years with Peggy following the incident and were grateful that even though she was limited by some negative side-effects, she was still their Peggy, and she always recognized her family and friends and enjoyed being with them.
Sometimes sarcastic and ornery, but always funny, creative, passionate, strong, beautiful, and loving, Peggy will be remembered and greatly missed by those who loved her most: her daughters, Melissa Busby (Joel Carter) (FL) and Vickey Lewis (Mike) (IL & FL); her brothers, Tommy Clanton (Becky) (AL) and James (Jimmy) Clanton (AL); her grandchildren, Benjamin Smidt, Jeremy Smidt, Amanda Busby, Bill Busby III, Michael Lewis, Jr., and Charles (Charlie) Lewis; and her life-long best friend, Linda Richardson.
The family also wishes to express their heartfelt thanks and gratitude to the nurses, doctors, and staff of Orchid Cove of Labelle for the years of loving care and friendship they provided Peggy.