Baker City, Baker County, Oregon
Susan Clair Lindley, 58, of Baker City, died May 14, 2006, at St. Luke’s Medical Center in Boise.
After a courageous struggle, she died from complications after surgery. She also had a longtime battle with breast cancer.
In celebration of Sue’s life, recitation of the rosary will be at 7:30 p.m. Monday at St. Francis de Sales Cathedral, First and Church streets. The Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 2 p.m. on Tuesday at the cathedral.
Susan was born on Dec. 31, 1947, at Brooklyn, N.Y., to Daniel Richard Monaghan, insurance executive, and Clair Santer Monaghan. Her father moved the family, including older sister, Patricia, to Seattle, Wash., in May 1949 and then later to Kansas City.
In 1954, the family then moved back west to Tacoma, Wash., where Susan attended all-girl Catholic schools. As a young girl growing up, she loved ice skating, horseback riding and water skiing.
She had a horse named April, which she enjoyed riding for many years. She attended Mount Angel College, where she met her husband, David F. Lindley. She later graduated with a degree in education from Marylhurst College.
Dave and Sue were married on June 20, 1970. They moved to Portland where Dave worked as an accountant. After Sue’s initial student teaching experience, in an inner-city Portland school, she was uncertain if she wanted to remain in the classroom.
Dave was soon drafted into the U.S. Army. The couple moved to Tacoma, near Fort Lewis, for 21 months. They then moved back to Portland where Dave pursued his accounting career.
Their daughter, Farrell Suzanne, was born on Feb. 13, 1975. When Farrell was 3, Dave convinced Sue, a big-city girl, to move to Baker City where he became an owner at a CPA firm.
The family moved in December 1978, and Sue faced a very cold initiation to Eastern Oregon the next few months, with temperatures dropping to 40 degrees below zero.
Their daughter, Hillary Christine, was born on Dec. 24, 1979. Soon afterward, the family acquired a pontoon boat and spent many weekends at the Snake River, sunbathing, swimming, fishing and playing Trivial Pursuit.
While caring for her two oldest daughters during their early childhood years, she also took it upon herself to remodel her beloved 1905 home. The couple’s daughter, Margaret Monaghan “Maggie,” was born on Jan. 14, 1987.
As Farrell and Hillary grew older, Dave and Sue purchased their first water-skiing boat and an interest in a dock, which they enjoyed for many years. The family also enjoyed several house-boating vacations on Lake Powell.
Sue was first diagnosed with breast cancer in April of 1995 and underwent several months of chemotherapy.
When Maggie reached school age, Sue became interested in teaching again and substituted for several years before becoming a full-time English teacher at Baker High School. She thoroughly enjoyed her job and bonded with many of her students and fellow faculty members.
One of her proudest professional moments was wearing a hooded graduation gown at Maggie’s graduation.
The family purchased a favorite family retreat, a cabin near Anthony Lakes in the early 1990s, and Sue again enjoyed remodeling the cabin.
One of Sue’s favorite possessions was her 1987 560 SL sky-blue Mercedes Benz.
In November 2004, Sue was again diagnosed with cancer, but she was determined to continue teaching as long as she was able, which she did until a few weeks before her death.
She was a lifetime member of the Catholic Church and a member of P.E.O.
Survivors include her husband, Dave, of nearly 36 years; her three daughters, Farrell, an occupational therapist, and her husband, Woody Kessler, of Boise, Hillary Lindley, a registered nurse, of Portland, and Maggie Lindley, a University of Oregon student; her sister, Patricia McConaghy of Tacoma, Wash.; several nieces and nephews; and a favorite first cousin, Terry Monaghan, and his wife, Mary Louise of Olympia, Wash.
She was preceded in death by her parents.
The family suggests memorial contribution to St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church, the Susan B. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, the Susan Lindley Memorial Fund through Baker High School, or a charity of one’s choice through Gray’s West and Co., 1500 Dewey Ave., Baker City, OR 97814.
Used with permission from: Baker City Herald, Baker City, Oregon, May 19, 2006
Transcribed by: Belva Ticknor