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Susan HornNovember 28, 2017
Susan M. Horn, November 1960 – 2017
Susan M. Horn, 57, passed away at home on November 28 after a courageous battle with Glioblastoma. Sue beat many odds and outlived her prognosis for years beyond expectation. She was a true fighter and loved life…and it loved her right back.
Sue was born on November 1, 1960 in John Day to parents George and Bonnie Harper. She joined older siblings Mary, Lola, Lala, Loren (Toink) and John. Together they grew up along Harper Creek and spent many years without electricity or running water (except for a pitcher pump). The kids spent their youth playing outside, reading, playing cards and games like Rummy and Spin the Bottle, shooting squirrels, and learning many songs through “Name That Tune” with dad on the banjo. One time Sue even got her hair parted with a rogue arrow shot by her brother John!
After graduating high school in 1978, Sue did some traveling (Alaska, Germany) and eventually ended up in Elgin in 1983 where she worked at the lumber mill. Steve Horn was working there, too, and it was only a matter of time before the two were smitten.
Sue invited Steve to her house one time and had renovated a lot of it on her own. Steve was hugely impressed by this and remembers the smell of cinnamon cans sitting on her oil stove. Sue was an incredibly hard worker and was even offered a foreman job at the mill after only a short time. True to her integrity, she turned the job down because she felt she wasn’t as qualified as other, longer-tenure employees.
Steve and Sue were married in 1984, and Steve will tell you this was the best decision he ever made. They raised a wonderful mix of kids – Stephanie, Tara, Heath, Sterling and Laramie. They lived in Elgin, Summerville and Netarts before settling for good in Mt. Vernon. Later in life they discovered an older daughter, Niki.
Sue held many jobs throughout her life, from firefighting and engineering to office management and even owning a store in Mt. Vernon. She embraced a variety of titles but would say the true champion of her accomplishments in the working world was obtaining the official title of Road Master of Grant County. Sue’s ability to motivate others and lead by example inspired everyone around her to strive for better, whether it be in their personal or professional lives. Her work ethic and overall good-natured, butt-kicking attitude made her a respected and treasured teammate in every organization she was part of. Sue’s devotion to Mt. Vernon is easily remembered and marked by her time spent on city council and as town Mayor, and by her selfless service and dedication to the beautification of and improvements to the community.
Aside from family, Steve and Sue’s houses on Cottonwood Street were her pride and joy. She was the absolute best at making any place feel like home. She loved all things antique and vintage farmhouse like old wash basins, cast iron, repurposing, quilting and sewing, and canning. She was a talented cook, cake baker, artist, builder, designer and decorator, and never feared trying new things or taking on big challenges. Sue spent hundreds of loving hours tending to her vegetable and flower gardens and was a certified Master Gardener and Food Preserver. Spending time camping with friends and family on Tex Creek or Murderer’s Creek topped the list of her favorite things, right up there with sitting on the porch with a cold drink, watching the world go by or visiting with company.
Sue kept life organized for so many in the Horn/Harper/Thissell/Weaver family. She was the glue that held everything together and her spirit and affection for togetherness will be deeply missed. Her door was always open and she was genuinely the most giving person – giving of her time, thoughts, hugs, smiles, and conversation. She was the first to volunteer wherever she was needed, was full of joy and was quite the comedian – she was never afraid to make a fool of herself and was one heck of a covered wagon racer! Sue especially loved to dance: “Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we’re here, we should dance.”
Sue is survived by her husband of 33 years, Steve; children Stephanie (Ty), Tara (Jeff), Heath, Sterling (Emily), Laramie and Niki; sisters Mary (Dennis) and Lala (Artie); brothers Toink (Jaunita) and John (Doris); grandchildren Carsen, Camryn, Cooper, Trevyn, Averie, Kaden, and Kallin; and numerous aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and cousins. She was preceded in death by her parents and sister Lola.
Contributions in Sue’s memory may be made to the Mt. Vernon Community Hall for improvements to or maintenance of the facility, in care of Tami’s Funeral Home PO Box 543 Halfway, Oregon 97834. On line condolences may be shared at www.tamispinevalleyfuneralhome.com