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Suzanne Maury Philips

1929 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Suzanne Maury Philips Obituary
Suzanne Maury Philips

Dick and Suzanne in Venice 1957

Suzanne Maury Philips died peacefully in her sleep on Friday morning, December 8th after a brief illness. She spent her last days surrounded by her immediate family sharing good memories of a happy, long life, well lived.

Suzanne was born April 26th, 1929 in the French Basque hamlet of Ispoure, tucked up against the Pyrenees. She was raised in Hendaye, on the Southwest Coast of France, adjacent to Spain, where her father was the chief of the customs office. Suzanne came of age during the German occupation. She was imbued with a strong spirit and Catholic faith-and was blessed throughout her life with intelligence, a spry sense of humor, an optimistic outlook and an infectious enthusiasm for life.

After the war and her schooling, Suzanne traveled extensively to Spain, England, Portugal and Italy, learning those languages along the way. In the late 1950's she moved to Paris, where she met a young American GI stationed there "to protect France from the North Koreans". Dick and Suzanne fell in love. They married on September 1st, 1958 in Suzanne's mother's home town of Itxassou and their wedding reception was held in the same family-owned restaurant in which Suzanne's parents held their own wedding reception in 1920!

After a ten-day honeymoon in Hendaye, Dick's visa expired and he came home to Seattle-spending the next two months working to get a visa for his new bride. With the personal intervention of Senator Henry "Scoop" Jackson, the new Mrs. Philips arrived in Seattle on Thanksgiving Day 1958.

The transition from the warm oceanfront elegance of Southern France to the dreary Seattle of 1958 was difficult for Suzanne, but the love she and Dick had for each other throughout their lives more than made up for the lack of winter sunshine outside. It helped that they were able to go "home" to Hendaye every summer to play on the beach!

Her son Peter (Peyo) was born in 1962 and Christopher came along in 1963. The little family settled in Lake Forest Park in 1967 and Suzanne has lived in the same house for the past fifty years.

Those years and that house were filled with joy, laughter, family and friends-always around a delicious meal prepared by Suzanne, a wonderful cook. Suzanne was active in St Mark's church, singing in the choir for nearly fifty years. She was a member of the All Saint's Guild. She was an active member of the Cercle Franais and its successor the Alliance Franaise, and her weekly lunches with "the French ladies" continued after that at le Cafe; de Paris in Edmonds.

Suzanne began teaching French at Berlitz when she arrived in Seattle, and continued teaching French at St Mark's school well in to her seventies. Until the end Suzanne was active and engaged in society. She was completely independent, drove herself and was proud of both. She enjoyed her friends, her family, the opera, plays, restaurants and social outings. Spry, happy and witty throughout her life, Suzanne was a joy to be around, and her memory will bring warm smiles to all who knew her.

Suzanne was preceded in death by her parents and the love of her life, Dick. She is survived by her sister, Madeleine, her sons Peter (Denise) and Chris (Judy), her grandchildren Emilie and Madeleine and Denise's daughter, Camille (Steve).

A funeral mass will be held at St Mark's Catholic Church in Shoreline, on Friday, December 22nd at 11:00 am.
Published in The Seattle Times from Dec. 10 to Dec. 17, 2017
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