Susan Pitman Mills of Arvada, Colorado, formerly of Norton Shores, Michigan, passed away peacefully on July 18, 2021. Her journey started in Galesburg, Illinois, on April 12, 1950, the daughter of James and Maxine (O’Brien) Pitman. Along the way, Susan became the love of her husband's life, the fiercely protective heart of her family core, a woman who sought social justice and spread compassion, and a true friend to everyone she met.
She was educated in Galesburg by the Catholic schools, then earned her undergraduate degree from Illinois State University and an advanced degree from Western Michigan University. Susan taught from 1970-2010, joyfully working to unlock a lifelong gift when her students would learn to read. It was during her years teaching in an underserved, urban school district that she was able to combine two of her passions: education and social justice. Susan was a tireless volunteer in many areas, setting an example of altruism without wanting to draw attention to herself. As a lifelong learner, she also was constantly sharing the lessons she learned with her close-knit family and their many friends and extended family. Susan was rarely without a book and loved to share interesting or eye-opening titles and authors; she also enjoyed knitting, traveling, and hosting family and friends.
Knowing Susan for even minutes would make clear that her greatest passion was her role as wife, mother, and grandmother. Today, after a lifetime of shared love, quiet wisdom, and effortless spirituality, she leaves behind her beloved husband Robert, cherished children Katy (Mike) Feldt and Maggie (Kevin) Boyd, treasured grandson Gus W. Feldt, and her sidekick and sister Anne (Dan) Miller. She also is survived by four special cousins: Carol (Doug) Wilson, John (Linda) Krupps, Joe (Gina) Krupps, and Barb Weaver. Susan was preceded in death by her parents, her brother Andrew J. Pitman, dearly loved Aunt and Uncle Dorthy and Bill Krupps, and special cousin Mary Krupps.
Memorial donations may be made to food insecurity programs, especially those benefiting children, or library and reading programs related to children.
A graveside service will be held at St. Joseph Cemetery in Galesburg, Illinois, on Saturday, September 4th, at 11 am. Lunch will follow at Peg and DeWayne Sperlin’s home at 414 N. Academy St., Galesburg, Illinois.
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