Susan E. “Susie” Johnson, 69, of Patterson Twp. passed away unexpectantly Sunday, February 6, 2022 at her residence.
Susie was born on October 20, 1952 in Rochester, NY to the late Leland and MaryEllen (Baker) Johnson. She grew up in Wilkesboro PA and Gales Ferry CT, and moved to Beaver Falls when her dad was named director of the New Brighton YMCA . She graduated from Beaver Falls High School and received her BA in education from Westchester University. During the 1970s she worked for the former Bob Capo Furniture store in New Brighton, throughout the 1980s she was an Electrical Estimator for Sargent Electric during Beaver Valley -U2’s construction.
In the early 1990s she committed herself to be a better bobbin-lace maker, grew proficient and became a renowned Lace teacher. Susie started and guided many students to becoming better lace makers and showed them that nothing was out of their reach. She became familiar with many styles of lace and her favorite became Withof Duchesse which she studied with Jeannet Van Oord for over 20 years and under Sister Judith in the Netherlands, receiving a coveted certification qualifying her to teach Withof Duchesse. She also enjoyed Bucks Point, an English Point Ground lace, under Pam Nottingham and went on to teach that also. Susie taught in many places across the States and in England and was one of the first American teachers to teach with Ulrike Lohr Voelcker (Germany) and Cathrine Barley at the lace workshop in Newbury England in 2011. She taught for the IOLI, the international lace group here in America and for many groups across the country, including Finger Lake Lace Days, Lace Days at Sweet Briar (VA) and especially enjoyed demonstrating at the Maple Syrup Festival with the Five Rivers Bobbin Lace Group, the Vicary House Museum and the Somerset Fall Festival. She earned the respect and admiration of her numerous students around the world for her constant attention to detail, patience and kindness whatever their skill levels. She always cherished her travels with the many visiting instructors and friends from Europe and America.
She was an excellent from scratch cook and her pies will be very much missed at family and lace gatherings - the late Coach Walton didn’t stop by to just talk football. She nurtured a small but great garden and had a catnip patch for the neighborhood felines.
She supported her husband’s Finnish heritage and baked a cardamom flavored coffee-cake the older Finns called “nisu”.
She will be sadly missed by her loving husband of 41 years, Keith Hongisto; a sister and brother-in-law, Nancy and Dean Ambrose, Parker, PA; a brother and sister-in-law, David and Shannon Johnson, Pulaski, PA; nieces, several nephews, nieces and cousins.
A private graveside service will be held in New Hampshire at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Ellwood Animal Hospital in Ellwood PA or the American Heart Association. Online condolences may be shared at www.hillandkunselman.com.
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