SUSAN J. PERRY (formerly SUSAN HALVORSEN) Susan Jacqueline Perry (1962 - 2017) passed at her Santa Fe home on October 16, 2017, surrounded by her family and close friends while in home hospice care. Susan was diagnosed with metastatic colon cancer in early February, and despite her courageous, strong battle, she finally yielded so that she could die with dignity, respect and peace. Susan was born by the sea in Fort Walton Beach, FL, to Carlos and Jan Perry, who predeceased her nearly 30 years ago. She grew up in San Antonio, TX; graduated from SMU; and received her Master's degree in art therapy and counseling from Loyola-Marymount University. She moved to Santa Fe some 17 years ago, and had an art therapy and family/couples/individuals psychotherapy practice, with a specialty of helping those with eating disorders. Other places she lived over the years were Maui, HI; Honolulu, HI; San Francisco, CA; and Santa Monica, CA. She is survived by her brother, Dan Perry, and his wife, Ashlyn Perry, of Santa Fe; her nieces, Paige Perry of San Antonio, TX, and Peyton Perry of Austin, TX; her aunts Miriam Patricia Perry, Betty Haines and Georgia Guzman-Perry; cousins Anne Haines, Laura Johnson, Pam Perry, Donna Jo Guzman-Perry, and Carlos Guzman-Perry, and Carlos' children, Aden and Josie. Susan seized many opportunities during her too-short life, including swimming with her beloved Sea Turtles, and collecting beautiful sea shells; wind surfing and paddle boarding; traveling through Mexico and collecting folk art; immersing her toes in the warm sand on her favorite beaches; cuddling with her Shi-Tziu-mix pups and her cats; dazzling us with her beautiful blue eyes; enjoying Sunday brunches with the Sprites on the High Road to Taos; helping young women treat their eating disorders; riding horses; meeting, calling, encouraging and keeping up with her friends, old and new; enjoying great books and movies; memorizing the names of all of those service providers at the Christus Cancer Center and at the St Vincent's Hospital, and learning about their lives and staying in touch with them; riding her bike with Mei Mei in the basket; comforting her friends and always offering support; and gracing us with her beautiful smile. Susan's family and friends especially want to thank her oncologist, Andrea Teague, M.D.; her family practice physician, Elisabeth Barkey, M.D.; her first, and last, on-call physician at St. Vincent's Hospital, Richard Gartner, M.D.; and all of the physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses, staff and volunteers at the Christus Cancer Center, Christus St. Vincent's Hospital and E.R.; UNM Cancer Center; and M.D. Anderson Cancer Center; and her pup sitter, Cynthia. We close with this poem written in Susan's memory on the day of her death by her beloved friend, Kiffany Gibbs: "For Susan - Of course you are at home in the Ocean. Only the deep blue forever Sea could hold a light as brilliant as yours. Return now, sweet girl, to the ageless, endless waters where there is room for you to expand, unbounded and unencumbered by the cruel limitations of this World. Shed your scars, your pain, your losses, your broken shell, and swim fearlessly and faithfully into the waves. Rest easy there, buoyed by a giant raft of orchid leis made of flowers you reaped today from the seeds you yourself sewed and tended over fifty-five glorious and painful years. Lie on your back with your breast to the golden sun and your eyes on the endless horizon. Cruise beyond the break to your tranquil, cosmic bed where the green sea turtles are waiting for you, waiting to welcome you into their ancient mystery. Float there and bask in the glory of your life well lived. Float into the embraces of your loved ones who will rejoice in your reunion. Then, just once, turn your eyes to the shore and behold us, your beloveds, as we stand hand in hand, eternally bound to you and to one another by your limitless love and your tenacious joy. See us there and know that you are imbedded in us and we in you like the marble in the smooth stones that the Ocean offers onto the sands. Know that forever better are we because of your beautiful heart. Your heart the size of the Ocean." A Memorial gathering will be announced soon. We ask that any donations be made to one of the following worthy organizations: The Nature Conservancy - Sea Turtle Nest (gifts.nature.org/collections/wildlife/product//sea-turtle-nest); The Santa Fe Animal Shelter (sfhumanesociety.networkforgood.com); The Food Depot (www.thefooddepot.org/); or The Cancer Foundation for New Mexico (cffnm.org).
The Family of Susan J. Perry has entrusted the care of their beloved one to Avista Cremation & Burial.