Susan Marie Flattery, 58
Sept. 4, 1957 — Nov. 29, 2015
Susan “Sue” Marie (Sander) Flattery, 58, of Duluth, died Nov. 29, 2015, at home surrounded by her loving family, after living by God’s grace with soft tissue sarcoma for the past five years.
Susan was born Sept. 4, 1957, in Milwaukee to Richard James and Jeanne Anne (Dickoff) Sander. She was raised by her parents with her two siblings, Mary and John, in Milwaukee, then Grafton and finally West Bend. After graduating from West Bend East High School in 1975, she received a bachelor’s degree from The College of St. Scholastica in 1979 with a major in physical therapy. She met Patrick Kevin Flattery while in college in Duluth. Sue and Pat entered into the sacrament of matrimony during Holy Mass on Sept. 20, 1980, at her childhood Catholic parish of St. Frances Cabrini in West Bend. Their marriage union was blessed with the gift of children beginning in 1983. Pat and Sue lived their entire married life in Duluth.
Sue worked as a physical therapist from 1979 to 2011 at Polinsky Medical Rehabilitation Center, Duluth Public Schools, Chris Jensen Rehabilitation Center, Lakeshore, Essentia Proctor and Lakewalk clinics. Sue often said it was a privilege to meet and assist people as a physical therapist. Sue volunteered in the community as a big sister, with Birthright in the 1980s, as a parent volunteer in the children’s schools for 20 years, as a parent volunteer with her daughter’s soccer teams, delivering meals on wheels and at her parish in many capacities, including the education programs, the parish library and as a promoter of natural family planning.
She cherished her vocation of marriage to her beloved, Pat, enjoying wilderness hiking and canoeing in the early years, active full family life in the middle years and a slower pace in the recent years. Throughout all her life, the practicing of the Catholic faith was of central importance. She cherished the role of being mother to Ryan, Michael and Meghan. She was grateful to be primarily at home to raise the children, while Pat was the main provider for the family. A home that welcomed the children’s friends and making choices to volunteer in activities the children were in at church, school and in the community was another way Sue stayed involved in the raising of the children. She enjoyed traveling with the family and eventually with Pat to visit their grown children. During the times of remission in these last few years, Sue and Pat grew in their faith by making a pilgrimage to the Holy Land and to Italy. Her hobbies included reading, gardening, sewing and family photos. She is predeceased by her brother, John Richard Sander (1998), and her father, Richard James Sander (2000).
Susan is survived by her loving husband, Patrick K. Flattery; her beloved children, Ryan Patrick (Asha Jetmalani) Flattery of Portland, Oregon, Michael Evan (Britney) Flattery of Colorado Springs, Colorado, and Meghan Marie Flattery of Duluth, Minnesota; and one preborn grandchild of Portland, Oregon.
She is further survived by her mother, Jeanne Anne Dickoff Sander Klees of West Bend; her sister, Mary Sander, of West Bend; brother-in–law, Michael (Denise) Flattery, DDS of West Des Moines, Iowa; sisters–in-law, Terry (Jan) Schmid of Fort Collins, Colorado, and Kathy (Bruce) Gilland of Superior, Colorado; nephews and nieces, Megan Schmid, Jason (Ashley), Kelsey and Matthew Flattery, and Kaitlin and Nicholas Gilland; and aunts and cousins.
The family wishes to thank the many generous individuals of the Communion of Saints, living on earth and in heaven, who have prayed for and supported our family during this time of illness. Thank you to the many priests who have nurtured our faith and administered the sacraments throughout her life. Our thanks also go out to a caring medical community at Essentia, especially, Dr. Mihailo Lalich.
Visitation will be 5-7 p.m. Thursday with wake prayers at 6:30 p.m. in the Dougherty Funeral Home. Visitation will continue Friday from 10 a.m. to the 11 a.m. Mass of Christian Burial at St. Benedict’s Church (1419 St. Benedict’s St., Duluth, MN).
Memorial donations may be made to The Couple to Couple League International at 4290 Delhi Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45238; Marriage and Family Life Program, Diocese of Duluth at 2830 E. Fourth St., Duluth, MN 55812; and Damiano Center at 206 W. Fourth St., Duluth, MN 55806.
Arrangements by Dougherty Funeral Home, 600 E. Second St., Duluth, MN 55805, 218-727-3555.