Wednesday, December 17, 2008

New Beginnings - For All of Us

The Susan we knew and loved passed away today. Her long journey is finally over and we are confident that she is at peace. It’s important to note that she did not “lose her battle with cancer”. She beat cancer years ago when she chose quality over quantity of life and lived with the disease far longer than expected. Indeed, her life is nothing short of a triumph. Now we all embark on a new journey – life without Susan’s presence, but with the memories of her that have shaped our lives. Her obituary will read something like this:

Susan G. Moody was known for her zealous effectiveness in everything she sought to accomplish. It was therefore no surprise to anyone who knew her that she lived a full life for more than four and a half years after being diagnosed with terminal stage IV melanoma. Her cancer journey was characterized by her ardent emphasis on the quality of life, not its duration. She died in her home on Wednesday, December 17, 2008 in the presence of loved ones.

Susan, 55, and who lived in Aurora, Colorado was a retired Community Health Nurse Manager. She held two bachelor’s degrees (Zoology and Nursing), two certificates (Medical Technology and Science Education), and an honorary master’s degree in Nursing Leadership bestowed by Regis University in 2004 when she fell just short of completion due to her illness. She began her professional life as a medical technologist for 15 years followed by brief service as a public school science teacher. But her true passion was in public health nursing where she became a subject matter expert in women’s health issues, especially for the under-served population. After first working in the Chicago area where they lived for eight years, she and her family moved back to Colorado where she worked for the Tri-County Health Department for several years before joining MCPN (Metro Community Provider Network) as a Clinic Operations Manager.

Susan was an avid gardener, knitter, jewelry maker, seamstress, reader, and singer. She was a soprano soloist in the Westminster Choir at Montview Boulevard Presbyterian Church, a member of a jazz/gospel ensemble group known as “The Stage Crew”, and appeared in numerous musical productions over many years. She was also an Elder in the Presbyterian Church USA and was elected to Montview’s Session. She served on a committee of the Diana Price-Fish Foundation, a cancer support organization; and on the board of Self Improvement Opportunities, an adult education provider where she also tutored GED students.

Susan married Rob Moody in November of 1978 after meeting him through her sister in 1972. Together, they raised two fine sons, Jon age 25 and Patrick age 22 both of Aurora. Besides her husband and sons, she is survived by her parents, Wallace and Nancy Given of Downers Grove, Illinois; a brother Scott Given also of Downers Grove; and her sister Barbara Wise of Hampshire, Illinois. Her extended family includes numerous cousins, nieces, and nephews.

A memorial service will be held at Montview Boulevard Presbyterian Church, 1980 Dahlia Street in Denver where she will be interred in Montview’s Memorial Columbarium. Memorials and contributions can be made in her name to:

Montview Blvd. Presbyterian Church Music Program
1980 Dahlia Street
Denver, CO 80220-1239

Visiting Nurse Association Hospice at Home Program
Attention: Bob Crump-Bertram, Chaplain
390 Grant Street
Denver, CO 80203

The Melanoma Research Foundation
170 Township Line Road, Building B
Hillsborough, NJ 08844