Susan Mary Rokosa Woodcock, 69, of Tiverton, passed away peacefully on Friday, Feb. 28, 2014, after a courageous battle against cancer. In her final moments, she was embraced by her children and touched by the warm rays of a brilliant Tiverton sunset. She lived a life full of learning, listening, giving, traveling, and strong connection to her dear friends and family.
Susan was born, the youngest of nine children, in Bristol, Conn., to Joseph and Anna Rokosa on October 31, 1944. After spending her youth in Bristol, she attended Hartford College for Women before receiving her undergraduate degree from UConn, and ultimately earned two masters degrees from the University of Maryland and from the Carey Business School at Johns Hopkins University.
She married Jim Woodcock in February, 1966. They were married for 20 years, living for times in Biloxi, Tampa, and NYC before ultimately settling in Severna Park, Md., and raising their two children, Katie and Alex.
Susan worked for the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, Md., where she researched and edited an annotated bibliography of the Eastern Shore of Maryland. In the early eighties she changed fields and began work as a systems analyst at Bell Atlantic/Verizon, and stayed within this field for over 20 years until her retirement when she moved to Tiverton.
Her life was not defined by her work though. She took the most pleasure out of playing with her grandchildren, laughing with her children, walking with her friends, corresponding with her extended family, and exploring the world through travel, literature, and the arts. She touched people in so many positive ways, always looking to help. She was a great supporter of education, and took a strong interest in supporting the Tiverton Library. While in Maryland, she was a group facilitator at Single Again, helping people to move forward after divorce. In Rhode Island, she embraced adult education and taught well-acclaimed courses in theater and literature at the Second Half. She especially loved singing with the Greater Tiverton Community Chorus, ushering at Trinity Rep, and treasured her morning rambles with the “Walking Ladies” to Coastal Roasters. Her life, although too short, was well-lived and marked by joy and connection.
Susan is survived by her beloved children, Alex Woodcock of Massachusetts and Katie Kitchel of Vermont; her sister, Judy Grisamore of Illinois; her grandchildren, Owen, Liam and Sebastian of Vermont; as well as her wonderful nieces and nephews.
There will be a service and celebration of Susan’s life on Saturday, May 10, in Hartford, Conn. In lieu of flowers, and because she had so many varied interests, her children ask that memorial donations in Susan’s name be made to the charity of your choice.