As we struggle to deal
with the shocking news of the loss of our beloved “Ecky”
(i.e., Sue Ellen Eckert Avner), we want to honor
her the way she deserves by paying tribute to the person we call our
precious Friend. We—her close ACHS
’65 pals—want to highlight the positive aspects that made us love her so
much: her endearing giggle, her
quick response to a Facebook message or email,
her reliable feedback when you really needed to hear the truth, her
willingness to provide an understanding “ear” when we were down, and the
list goes on!
Those of us—her closest
ACHS ’65 pals—plotted with her to move from Amherst
to start a new and exciting chapter that led us to San
Francisco during the Summer of Love in 1969. The original group consisted of the FIVE
Sues: Sue Barrow (Barzie), Sue Driscoll Meyer (The Drisc),
Sue Eckert Avner (Ecky),
Sue Putman Randall (Putsie), and Sue Tober Sutton (Tobes). With so many of us named “Sue,” it is we
obvious we HAD to have nicknames!
Jennifer Brehm Weller (Brehmie)
quickly joined us and the exodus from Amherst
to San Francisco grew and
grew. Reunions in San Francisco and
Lake Tahoe and ACHS reunions included getting together with friends we call
the “Beloveds”—“Chez” Chesbro Warner, “Kubs” Kathy Kubli Finaldi, “Jergs” Sharon Jerge Ewers, “Koncz” Mary Konczakowski Pappas, Sally Stiles Hamby, “Wheels” Wendy
Williams McInturff, and Cathy “McClure” Gildiner (our “Honorary” ACHS ’65 friend!). We all came
to love our “Little Ecky” even more as we shared
experiences life dealt us…marriage, children, divorce, remarriage, loss of
parents, etc. She was never too busy to be “there” for us all her life, as
evidenced by the many reunions she attended over the years in order to keep
connected, whether in San Francisco,
Lake Tahoe, Florida,
or Buffalo. We cherish the
special memories of a Buffalo ACHS reunion party held by Tony Caggiano (Cagey) and the numerous reunion parties
hosted by John and Shelley McKendry. We are
forever indebted to John and Shelley for their loving generosity and
hospitality over the years.
Especially now, we are so grateful to them as they are holding on to
our Ecky with the intention of giving her a final
resting place in Buffalo, NY.
Details will be announced once plans are in place.
Now, Dearest Ecky, we want to be “there” for you as you have made
your transition from this life to the next.
May this website, and the sampling of pictures from various chapters
of your life, show how much you are loved.
We will never, ever forget you, Ecky.
Godspeed, precious Friend.
The following is the obituary, to be placed in
the Buffalo News, written by Jennifer Brehm Weller:
Sue Ellen Eckert Avner (Ecky) passed away peacefully in her sleep on Friday, December 6, 2013
at her home in Overland Park,
Sue was a life force to all who knew her and the source of
communications which held so many of her friends together over the
years. Sue graduated from Amherst Central
in New York
in 1965. She moved with her high school friends to San
Francisco in 1967.
Eventually she settled in Overland Park, Kansas, where she worked at
Midwest Research Institute until her retirement. Sue is survived by
an only son, Nicholas, and her two brothers Paul Eckert and Billy
Eckert and their families.
Sue will be remembered with love and laughter of a life well lived
by a friend much loved. There will be a celebration of her life at a
later date. In lieu of flowers or donations Sue would have liked all
who knew her to be kind to one another and love each day.
Today (February 7) would have been your 67th birthday, dear Ecky! Cannot believe the funny cards we used to
exchange will not be done this year…or ever again! As I think back on our
long history a flood of memories come to me: the shared early grade
school days, the junior high school experiences, walking to Franks (formerly
getting dressed at my house for the Senior Prom, moving to San Francisco,
meeting up again at our many Lake Tahoe/San Francisco/Amherst reunions over
the years…and the list goes on. Oh, how we will miss your infectious
giggle…but we will make sure you will never, ever be forgotten. SO,
in that respect, we will always keep you with us, dearest Ecky!!! Love, "Putsie"
From the very beginning to the very end.....Ecky, you were always my friend. Happy Birthday
Eck, xoxo, you will be truly missed...We all have
a real Guardian Angel now. Love, Kubs