Born: Oc­to­ber 17, 1950, Port An­ge­les, Wash­ing­ton.

Died: Ju­ly 23, 2004, Per­al­ta, New Mex­ico.



Susan was the se­cond of two girls in the fa­mi­ly. Her fa­ther worked for the Na­tion­al Park Ser­vice, so Su­san en­joyed grow­ing up in Na­tion­al Parks and His­tor­ic Sites across Am­er­ica.

She did her un­der­gra­du­ate work at Stan­ford Uni­ver­si­ty and earned a BS in ma­the­ma­tics in 1972.

The next year she took a one-year gra­du­ate pro­gram at Mult­no­mah School of the Bi­ble in Port­land, Ore­gon, and received a Cer­ti­fi­cate of Bi­ble up­on com­ple­tion.

She de­cided not to pur­sue a ca­reer in com­put­er sci­ence, as she had orig­in­al­ly in­tend­ed, in­stead em­bark­ing on a ser­ies of jobs in which she honed her of­fice skills and gained mis­sions ex­pe­ri­ence. She spent 1976 in Tan­za­nia un­der the Af­ri­ca In­land Mis­sion.

Upon re­turn, she set­tled in Por­tland, Ore­gon, where she learned word pro­cess­ing and did ed­it­ing and proof­read­ing.

In 1990, she de­cid­ed to go back to school to learn how to work with vi­su­al­ly im­paired and blind adults.

She re­ceived her MA in re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion teach­ing of the blind from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Ar­kan­sas at Lit­tle Rock in 1991.

She then moved to Fort Col­lins, Col­o­ra­do, where she worked as an ed­it­or and desk­top pub­lish­ing tech­ni­cian for 10 years and did vol­un­teer re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion teach­ing in her spare time.

Much of Su­san’s ed­it­ing and desk­top pub­lish­ing work was on books pro­duced by the Mis­sions Com­mis­sion of World Ev­an­ge­li­cal Al­li­ance, in­clud­ing Work­ing Your Way to the Na­tions, Too Val­u­a­ble to Lose, Send Me, Glo­bal Mis­si­ol­o­gy for the 21st Cen­tu­ry, and Do­ing Mem­ber Care Well.

She al­so worked part time for Emer­gen­cy World, a com­pa­ny that pro­duced train­ing ma­ter­i­als for emer­gen­cy re­sponse per­son­nel.

Susan moved back to Ore­gon in 2002, where she con­tin­ued the same work she did in Col­o­ra­do.

For se­ver­al years, Su­san worked with Wyc­liffe As­so­ci­ates as part of a team that helped key­board Bi­bles and New Tes­ta­ments that were print­ed be­fore the age of com­put­ers and that need­ed to be put in­to elec­tron­ic for­mat so they could be up­dat­ed or adapt­ed for oth­er lang­uag­es.

Susan’s writ­ing be­gan in 1997, when she set a goal of writ­ing 100 hymns. Her me­thod was to se­lect a pass­age of Script­ure for each song and then find a hymn tune that seemed to fit the pass­age.

She thus com­bined the en­dur­ing Word of God with me­lo­dies that have stood the test of time. Her songs were a bless­ing to her, and she was pleased to be able to share them with oth­ers.


Help Needed

If you know Pe­ter­son’s bu­ri­al place,