Mrs. Susan Elizabeth Brown Stephen, 46, passed away at the Riverview Health Center on 7 August 2020 after a brief but courageous struggle with cancer.
Susan is survived by her devoted husband Scott & beloved son Timothy, of Winnipeg; parents Joe & Lorna (née Eaton) Brown of Miami MB; her twin Jennifer (Chad) Hill, also of Miami; and sister Penny (Chris) Skead of Wauzhushk Onigum (Rat Portage) ON. She will be sorely missed by her many nieces, nephews, cousins, aunts, and uncles. She is predeceased by her Granddad & Nanny, Laurence & Irene (née Brimble) Eaton; Grandma Evelyn (née Anderson) Pearson & Grandfather Roy (Royal) Brown, both of Kenora.
Susan was born in Kenora ON on 11 November 1973 to Joe & Lorna Brown. She grew up with her loving parents and siblings in Keewatin ON, where they enjoyed summers swimming in the Winnipeg River almost daily. Susan graduated from Beaver Brae Secondary School in 1993: she was active on the yearbook committee and was the school’s only Latin student. She moved to Winnipeg in 1993 to study computer science at the University of Manitoba. During her first year at the U of M, she met Scott, the love of her life. During the years Scott was working on his Master’s and then Doctorate in history, they often spent the school year in Winnipeg and work in Edmonton (Scott's home town) during the summers. Susan and Scott married in August 1999 at Fort Edmonton Park, where Scott had worked for many years, and where they both had many friends. After their marriage, they settled year-round in Winnipeg, and Susan began a 20-year-career with Rexall/PharmaPlus: after many years working in the post office, she moved up into management, and then into the pharmacy as a Pharmacy Assistant.
In 2008, she and Scott bought their first house, a cozy little bungalow in River Heights, where they built a wonderful home together. Timothy was born in 2010, and has been enriching their lives ever since. Susan was a devoted and loving mother, always happy to make Halloween costumes and birthday party crafts, and to lend her video game skills to helping Timothy conquer the latest installments in the Legend of Zelda series (her favourite) or add to his Pokedex in Pokemon Go.
Susan was a quiet introvert, who loved to read, knit, and (in later life) crochet. Her large collection of fantasy, science fiction, and romance novels filled several bookcases, but did not represent the full range of her interests: Jane Austen, Lucy Maud Montgomery, Dorothy L. Sayers, and P.G. Wodehouse also occupied considerable shelf space. She was a keen genealogist with a talent for research. She was a life-long learner, taking classes in archery, photography, watercolour painting, yoga, cake decorating, and needlework techniques. She was even teaching herself Swedish, her love of gadgets finding digital expression in the universal truth, “There’s an app for that!”
Most of all, Susan loved spending time with family & friends. A trip to the zoo or the museum was always welcome, but so too was an afternoon of shopping, a family dinner, or just lounging around. She was full of a quiet dignity that allowed her to gracefully accept whatever came her way, but she was far from passive: she had a strong will and would do all she could to change something she felt not to be right. When she was diagnosed with brain cancer in February 2020, she did not wail and gnash her teeth, but simply set out to fight the tumour with every ounce of her considerable strength. The cancer may have taken her life, but it could not even scratch her dignity, her grace, or her beauty.
Family, friends, and coworkers past and present will remember Susan’s quiet energy, her beautiful smile, her quick wit, her obvious love for her family, and the joy she brought to this world. We remember Susan as kind and caring, patient and helpful, cheerful and good-hearted. We all wish that we could have had more time with her, but we are all grateful for the time we did have together.
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