Susan Almon
Susan Almon
Susan Almon
Susan Almon
Susan Almon
Susan Almon

Obituary of Susan Moore Almon

Susan Moore Almon 2.19.1933 ~ 2.13.2020 In the early morning hours of Thursday, February 13, 2020, Susan Moore Almon died unexpectedly but peacefully of sudden cardiac arrest at El Camino Hospital in Mountain View, California with family near her side. She was one week shy of her 87th birthday. Born Betty Sue McDonald on Sunday, February 19, 1933 at home in Hamlet, North Carolina, to Angus Campbell McDonald and Varneen Irwin McDonald. The doctor incorrectly recorded her birth with the county, so she always celebrated twice. Susan’s early years included time on her Uncle’s farm giving her down-home sensibilities and a practical approach to life. After her parents separated, Susan grew up with her mother, sister and grandmother in Hamlet and later moved to Greensboro and then Charlotte, NC. Susan often talked about the special bond she had with her grandmother in how they took care of each other. But her favorite childhood memories were her frequent visits to Rockingham, NC where she shared many adventures with her five “sister cousins,” who nicknamed her “Bet” and remember her as “full of spunk and good ideas.” Throughout her life, Susan remained loyal to her childhood home and the cousins she fiercely loved, visiting whenever she could and taking great pride in her Scottish roots as a descendent of the Lord of the Isles and chief of Clan Donald, John of Islay (1336-1386). Susan was a lifelong supporter of Mark’s Creek Presbyterian Church, where she attended services with her cousins and father Angus who was a founding member and Deacon. She learned to pray the Hail, Mary from her Baptist grandmother, Lydia Ann Freeman Irwin, widow of Catholic immigrant, John Irwin. At the age of 13, having left the Mark’s Creek area, Sue chose to be baptized Roman Catholic and with her sister as her sponsor, was confirmed the following year choosing the saint name Theresa. Susan had a strong devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mother and prayed fervently for the protection of the unborn and their mothers. She also found inspiration in the life of Saint Francis of Assisi. She officially changed her name to Susan Elizabeth Moore in 1951 after her mother married her step-father, Winfred Moore. They moved to Buchanan, New York where Susan graduated from Hendrick Hudson High School, earning the Regent’s award in Geometry and a reputation as a relentless competitor on the track as well as the field hockey pitch. She made life-long friends as a cheerleader, thespian, and choir member. With her poise and ready smile and the encouragement of her mother’s friends in retail fashion, she tried her hand at modeling in Manhattan for a short time. Susan pursued a teaching degree at University of Tennessee, Chattanooga, and though she never taught in a classroom, her children will tell you she was a consummate grammarian and indefatigable defender of the English language. In college she pledged the Pi Beta Phi sorority and was also chosen “Sweetheart of Sigma Chi” which she virtuously explained was the result of rallying her sorority sisters to help wash the windows of the fraternity house. While at Chattanooga she unabashedly challenged a visiting West Point Cadet to recite the Confiteor ~ in Latin ~ to prove he was the Catholic he claimed to be. Bill Almon did not disappoint, cinching his date for “June Week 1954” at the USMA. Their whirlwind romance appropriately developed into a proposal of marriage during Hurricane Carol and upon her graduation from UTC they married on June 11, 1955 at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in University City, Missouri, and departed their reception through the traditional Arch of Sabers. Mr. & Mrs. William J. Almon were a romantic couple through thick-and-thin. Born in the Depression era they valued hard work, education and family. While following Bill’s career in the Army and then IBM, together they moved fifteen times, living on both coasts and overseas while raising five children, with the first four each arriving a year apart. She learned how to cope with whatever life delivered, propelling herself with kindness and that ready smile. As their family grew, Susan became an immaculate homemaker and devoted wife, regularly making Bill’s favorite sticky buns using his mother’s recipe. With frequent moves and Bill traveling for work, Susan strove to be “always there” for her children. She formed close and lasting friendships with other Catholic mothers, volunteering at her children’s schools as home room mother, festival booth chair, book fair chair, and PTA president. She regularly played tennis with her best friends and was an avid gardener with a special love for African Violets of purple, her favorite color. In 1977 Bill and Susan joined the Los Altos community where they remained faithful parishioners of Saint Nicholas Catholic Church except for the four years they resided in Greenwich, Connecticut before returning once again to Los Altos and Saint Nicholas in 1988, for good. Once her youngest child entered high school, Susan began work at Stanford Bookstore, taking full advantage of the employee discount. But when Bill’s mother Louise fell ill, Susan insisted on resuming the role she knew so well to care for her mother-in-law at home in her final years. As a life-long learner and bibliophile, Susan was always discussing current world events and sharing books and articles of interest she found with family and friends. But most of all Susan loved reading aloud with her children and grandchildren, instilling in them her love of learning, reading and history. While Bill climbed the ranks of the corporate ladder, Susan enjoyed traveling with him on many of his business trips abroad to Japan, China, Singapore, Scotland, Ireland, Germany and England. Bill learned he could literally take Sue anywhere and beamed at her charm and grace among senators, generals and CEOs. As eleven grandchildren came along Susan and Bill dutifully spoiled each one, fully embracing their roles as Grammy and G-Daddy. With her children and then grandchildren faithfully delivering a new baby for her to dote upon every few years, Susan firmly established herself as the family’s “baby whisperer.” She loved to sing, especially Bing Crosby’s “Swinging on a Star,” whenever she cradled a baby in her arms. Guided by their faith, Bill and Susan actively supported numerous charitable causes, with an emphasis on Catholic Education, including Saint Charles Catholic School in San Carlos CA, Saint Nicholas Catholic School in Los Altos CA, Saint Francis High School in Mountain View CA, North Catholic High School in Cranberry PA, and Bill’s Alma Maters: Christian Brothers College High School in Saint Louis MO, and the United States Military Academy. In 2016, Susan and Bill celebrated their 61st anniversary two days before Bill passed away. In the years after, Susan resided at Villa Siena in Mountain View where she enjoyed frequent visits from family near and far, strolling through the courtyard gardens, and daily Mass and Rosary, along with the company of good friends and SFHS student volunteers. Susan was grateful for a blessed and accomplished life and seemed torn between leaving family behind and joining the love of her life. In her final hour, her heart chose true love just in time for Valentine’s Day. Susan was predeceased by her husband, parents, sister, Mona Coats Skvarla, and beloved Aunt and Uncle, Alma & D.L. McDonald. She is survived by her five children, William Almon Jr. (Holly) of Oak Island, CA, Rosemary Martin (Larry) of Mars, PA, Jane Almon (Greg Baker) of Newcastle, CA, Philip Almon (Lilli) of Castle Rock, CO, and Patricia Cremer (Michael) of Mountain View, CA; and eleven grandchildren, Sara Farmer (Jeff) of Asheville, NC, Kathleen Creighton (Paul) of Fresno, CA, William Almon III (Ashley) of Charlotte, NC, Evan Almon of Castle Rock, CO, Emma Martin (Carly Allen) of Chattanooga, TN, Zachary Almon of Boulder CO, Elizabeth Martin of Mars PA, and the Cremer Brothers (Samuel, Stuart, Shepherd and Sullivan) of Mountain View CA. Susan was extremely proud of her seven great-grandchildren, June Creighton, Helen Farmer, James Creighton, Audrey Farmer, William Almon IV, Millie Almon, Ruby Farmer, and would want you to know another baby boy is on the way. Susan also leaves behind countless cousins, nieces, nephews and friends whom she loved. Susan’s life will be celebrated with a Rosary and Vigil service on Thursday, February 27 at 6:30pm at Spangler Mortuary in Los Altos, with viewing between 5:00 and 8:00 pm. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:00 am, Friday, February 28, at Saint Nicholas Church in Los Altos. Following the Mass on Friday, a reception will be held at Saint Nicholas Church Hall. Interment will be next to her husband, Bill at West Point Cemetery in West Point, NY, with a graveside service planned for the morning of Friday, April 17, 2020. Her death leaves a hole in many hearts, and her strength, unwavering faith and devotion to family will be remembered for years to come. The family wishes to express thanks to Susan’s wonderful caregivers and the entire staff at Villa Siena (www.villa-siena.org), where she received the best of care, feeling safe and loved. In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to this wonderful mission of the Daughters of Charity. The Almon family is grateful for the care and attention provided by Spangler Mortuary in Los Altos CA, William F. Hogan Funeral Home in Highland Falls NY, and the West Point Association of Graduates Dettre Memorial Services Assistance Program.
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Thursday
27
February

Visitation

5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Thursday, February 27, 2020
Spangler Mortuaries - Los Altos Chapel
399 South San Antonio Road
Los Altos, California, United States
(650) 948-6619
Thursday
27
February

Vigil

6:30 pm
Thursday, February 27, 2020
Spangler Mortuaries - Los Altos Chapel
399 South San Antonio Road
Los Altos, California, United States
(650) 948-6619
Friday
28
February

Mass

10:00 am
Friday, February 28, 2020
Saint Nicholas Catholic Church
473 Lincoln Ave.
Los Altos, California, United States
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