Photo courtesy of Bill Peer
By Steve Sears
“One of my mother’s favorite sayings was, ‘Eat the frog’ (Mark Twain) and ‘Just do it.” She was a go getter and believed in meeting obstacles head on, no dilly dallying.”
“I’ll miss our talks.”
Those words are courtesy of Bill Peer, an area real estate agent, about the love, care, and presence the defined his late mom, Lane Sager Peer, who passed away on April 19, 2021, at age 77.
“We were a little bit surprised,” says her son. “She had had surgery about three months before that – double bypass surgery – and had seemingly recovered from that. It was a slow recovery, but we thought she was recovering, and then all of a sudden she died in her sleep.”
A celebration of her life was held at her Denville home of 55 years on Saturday, June 19.
“She just connected with everybody that she ever came in contact with,” says Peer, “and there was such an outpouring of support when she did pass away, because she touched so many lives. And not just that she knew people – she really connected with them. She helped everybody she ever came in contact with, and it was just her genuine soul. There truly is a void in many people’s lives. I keep getting phone calls or emails saying, ‘I just can’t believe it.’ She is truly missed by many.”
Lane Sager Peer was born in East Orange, and she and her son both sold real estate for Weichert Realtors of Mountain Lakes. Lane also loved to volunteer, driving cancer patients to chemotherapy visits. “All kinds of doctor visits,” says Peer. “If they couldn’t get to the hospital for whatever reason, she’d drive them.” His mom was also a Caldwell College graduate, an advocate for the institutionalized elderly, a student and practitioner of meditation, loved to travel, and also was a published poet. She is survived by her husband, Bill, three sons (the before mentioned Bill, and David and Christopher), their wives, and four grandchildren.
There is a void in the Peer family, as well as the community of Denville. “Obviously to our family she meant a great deal,” says Peer. “She taught us everything. I have two brothers – very successful people; one’s a chiropractor, one’s a surgeon – and she really just gave us a great sense of right and wrong growing up, and taught us a lot of things. Some of the main things I would say that were key to our lives is just simply that she did not value money like other people. She obviously realized that everybody needs money to survive or whatever, but just was a firm believer and a teacher of, ‘People are the most important thing, and time is more valuable than money.’” Son and mom worked closely for 20 years as realtors, and the miss is evident at the office as well. “During those years, she was a wealth of knowledge and I absorbed a lot of it. When I got started, I became successful quickly in real estate, and a large part of that was due to her because she was a very intelligent woman. She imparted a lot of that knowledge on the people that she worked with, so it’s difficult.”
Lane was fondly remembered and her life celebrated by over 150 people on that rainy Saturday in June. Friends and family attended, as well as a lot of colleagues and realtors, and not just those who worked for Weichert. “She just touched so many people along the way,” Peer says. “We had a bunch of speeches, we had food and drink, we had an open mic session, we had a bunch of local artists, me and my brothers all play guitar and so we took turns trading the microphone and singing songs, and it really was a celebration. I mean, there was during some of the speeches and some of the talks a lot of tears, but we did celebrate and I know that’s what she would want.”
Bill Peer then adds minus doubt, “I’m sure she was smiling down on us.”