Laughter and Smiles

Shared by Trudy Johnson on July 9, 2019

I didn't know Susan "in person" very well, having met her only once in Las Vegas. What I did know of her was through my sister, Jane, who throughout the years shared their adventures in Juneau and the friendship between them. And when I finally met this "Susan", I knew what everyone who met her must have felt being around her-happiness. Her smile was infectious and her laughter so engaging. Who couldn't feel good around this woman. And the sparkle in her eye for her guy was refreshing to see. I hope the best memories of Susan will help those who loved her be less difficult in the days ahead.

State Fair

Shared by Cameron Wallen on July 7, 2019

Before moving out of state my Parents and I went to the state fair together, It was probably our 15th time going to the little Alaskan Fair and this was my favorite. Enjoying the people watching with her, eating terribly overpriced and delicious food. Petting all of the animals, she especially loved the little goats and piglets. More than anything I always enjoyed watching my parents be together and watching them tease and flirt with each other year after year, they are the best example a son could ever have.

I love you Mom. 

Lunch in Paris

Shared by Karyn Barr on July 4, 2019

The guys were going to yet another war museum, and Susan and I decided to tap out!  We did a little shopping and ultimately ended up putting together this lunch.  We had a hilarious deli experience, as they did not speak very good English, and we spoke even worse French.  There was a lot of laughing, both us and them, but ultimately ended up with what we wanted...I think!    We took it back to our hotel and sat on the most beautiful little terrace.  We were sitting there chatting and thoroughly enjoying our little lunch, and I remember thinking this is what Paris is about.  

An elderly lady came out on the terrace shortly after us, and we immediately asked her if she would like to join us.  She declined on anyfood, but it started conversation.  I remember listening to Susan ( and myself) have the best conversation with this lady. Susan had a way of making people feel so comfortable talking to her.  

First UT Game with Visiting Family

Shared by Jared Wallen on July 4, 2019

After April and I finished our house in Austin, my parents, aunt and uncle came to stay with us and we would explore Texas together. We decided to go to a UT game while everyone was in town, and we figured since it is October it wouldn't be too hot. Well we were wrong and all of us were dying in the heat. They were giving away ice towels at the stadium and we were all using them. My dad tied his around his neck and my mom thought that was hilarious as we all did.

It was a good game and fun experience,  with the only issue being the crazy heat and seats directly in the sun.

Last Minute Airport Photo

Shared by Jared Wallen on July 4, 2019

My family has always been bad at taking enough photos. Well April and I have come back every Christmas since we left state. This time works out well as things slow down at our works and a lot of work holidays obviously.

Well April and I had spent like nearly 2 weeks with my parents and on our way to the airport,  realized that we did not take a single picture the whole time. So at the Anchorage airport while being dropped off we quickly huddle for a single holiday photo :)

Her Son Getting Married

Shared by Jared Wallen on July 4, 2019

April and I decided to get married and were actually thinking of doing it fairly quickly and didn't want to make a big deal about it. We had even thought about just doing it at a courthouse as the thought of planning, arranging  and paying for a wedding seemed a little overwhelming and not what either of us we really wanted.

So when it came time to tell my parents, we were both so nervous. April had known my dad for years and did want to make their relationship awkward and both of us were worried about my mom. Most people know my mom does not have an issue speaking her mind or asking difficult questions, especially to her own family. So April and I went out to dinner with them and I remember being so nervous. I ended up awkwardly dragging out a 'small talk' topic for way too long. Finally, I think  April kicked me  under the table and I told my parents our plan. My moms first words were  'Why?' (I love my mom so much).

So after we talked for a while my parents seemed very okay with the idea, and then both paused for a second and looked at each other. It's like they both had a conversation with a glance and then my mom turned and said that since they were going to be on a cruise around that time, they asked if they could fly us down to Vegas to get married so they could be there. The trip would be their wedding gift to us and they could make it to Vegas when the cruise ended. April and I agreed as this would be a lot more special and get us out of having to tell people we were not having a big wedding and just signing paperwork.

So on 12/12/12, my parents, April, myself and a couple friends ended up in Vegas and April and I got married  roughly around 12:00pm. That day was a Vegas record  as there were like over 800 other weddings in Vegas that day due to the unique date. 

We got changed later and went out that night to see brides all over Vegas like a halloween with everyone wearing the same costume. There were happy brides and crying brides, and brides that looked like their new marriage wouldn't make it through the weekend.

Shared by Patricia Kinney on July 4, 2019

Thinking of all the laughs Clark and I had during all of our camping trips together.

We will cherish those memories. You will be greatly missed

Mom and Me in Tucsan

Shared by Jared Wallen on July 3, 2019

When my wife April won the Mrs. Alaska America title in 2014, my parents were out camping that weekend and were upset they had missed the pageant and seeing April win. So when April had to compete in nationals in Tucson, my mom said she wanted to be there.

So months later in Arizona, April was super busy doing activities that all the contestants had to do and not a lot of time for family during the day. My dad also had to attend a meeting in California and had to leave for a day. So it was just going to be me and my mother for a day. 

We had breakfast that morning and on our way out of the restaurant we thought we were seeing the biggest bees we had ever seen until we got closer to discover they were the smallest birds we had ever seen (tiny humming birds I think). We had looked up stuff to do that day, and the only thing around was a desert museum. We really had nothing else to do for hours, so we decided to check it out and the place was about as exciting as it sounds, but I loved that experience because my mom and I had a blast. It had nothing to do with the museum, but we just enjoyed each others company and conversation so much that time flew so fast.

This photo is of her and I taking a quick selfie at the museum. 

That is one thing I love about both my parents, that I could be trapped anywhere with them and we can make the best of it and just enjoy each other. That has to be why they went and did so much together as they just loved each other.

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