Susan Clarkson
Susan Clarkson

Obituary of Susan Katherine Clarkson

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         Sue was a Minneapolis girl, born to Olive and Bill Mentzer on May 25, 1935. She grew up with her big brother, Bill, during the Great Depression when money was scarce.  She used her creativity to make greeting cards, books, poems and toys -- a talent she shared with the world the rest of her life. Sue graduated from Washburn High School followed by four years at the University of Minnesota, where she earned a degree in elementary education. It was at the U of M that she met a tall, bald Sigma Chi named Robert Clarkson (a.k.a. Stub or The Boj). They were friends first, then sweethearts, then loving partners for 65 years. 

          Sue was blessed with many talents that she shared with family and friends. Playing the piano, painting pumpkins, making puppets and creating very special birthday cards and her famous "Candygrams" were just a few of the projects she dearly loved to do. They kept our dining room table full of fur, feathers, glue and paint. Sue played the piano anytime she found one, including St. Al's rehab, churches, nursing homes and thrift stores. She even had her family dress up as clowns to join her as she played the BSU calliope in a number of Boise parades. Good times and wonderful memories!  Some of her most precious musical memories were created while she worked in the activities department at Emerald Care Nursing Home. She and the Activities Director, Barbara Dennet, formed the original "Geriatric Jazz Kitchen Band". Comprised of Emerald Care residents, the band played the "nursing home circuit" throughout the Treasure Valley. Sue and Stub's alter egos, Tina and Axel Torkelquist, entertained Optimist Clubs in the Pacific Northwest, being long time members of the Boise Noon Optimist Club.  Sue loved the time she got to spend with the "Showtime Sweet Adelines" harmonizing with good friends.  She taught elementary school and was overjoyed when her two daughters, Lisa (Rick) Peterson and Cathy Clarkson, became teachers. Grandkids Robert and Will (Jessica) Longstroth, Whitney Wolff, and great grandchildren Lily, Paul, Reesa and Alex provided Sue with a host of opportunities to share her silliness and her love of music. 

          An awesome sense of humor was Sue's best medicine while she dealt with health issues for many years. Laughter is one medicine you can't overdose on.

          Sue was incredibly thankful for her family and friends and their visits, phone calls, meals and especially their prayers. A special thanks goes out to the Enhabit Hospice nurses and staff, particularly Carol Heffenan, who became Sue's soul mate and shared many hours with her making music and playing "Name That Hymn", and Chaplin Mike, to whom she was forever giving material for sermons.

          Sue passed away peacefully, surrounded by her family, on February 28, 2023. Her final wish was for everyone to keep singing, laughing, smiling and sharing their talents to brighten someone's day.

          A celebration of life for Sue will be held at 4:00 pm MST, Wednesday, March 15th at Summers Funeral Chapel located at 3629 E. Ustick Road, Meridian, Idaho.  The service will be live-streamed and available for later viewing on Sue's Summers Funeral Home Obituary webpage.  In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations be made in her name to Capital City Sound, the Idaho Humane Society or a charity of your choice.


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Celebration of Life

4:00 pm
Wednesday, March 15, 2023
Summers Funeral Home- Ustick Chapel
3629 E. Ustick Rd.
Meridian, Idaho, United States
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