July 22, 1925 - March 11, 2011
Susan Emily Harris Dickinson was born July 22, 1925, in Greer County, Okla., to Oliver Wendell and Olive Avery Harris. She moved with her family during the Dust Bowl, stopping in New Mexico, California and Washington along the way, picking fruit to make ends meet. She spoke of picking cotton with her siblings as a child. Her family settled in North Idaho in 1931, and Sue attended school in Naples and then graduated from Bonners Ferry High School. She
attended the University of Idaho and Whitworth colleges, graduating with a degree in education from Whitworth in 1947.
Her first teaching assignment was in Starbuck, where she boarded with Joe and Jennie Dickinson Zink. There she met Jennie's son, Benton Lombard Dickinson, whom Sue married in 1948. They honeymooned at Lake Chelan, where Sue's brothers were mining the Black Warrior at Stehekin. Together Ben and Sue had four children and built a successful farm, ranch and timber business. Sue continued teaching in
Starbuck, briefly in Arizona, and later in the Dayton School District.
She was a member of the Starbuck Community Church and the Dayton First Congregational Church. She loved to read and was a lifetime learner, and she shared that passion with her family. Upon retirement,
she stayed active with volunteering, including Project Read, PEO, AAUW, the Retired Teachers Association and the First Congregational Church, and spent time with her children and grandchildren. She also traveled with Ben to Australia and the Caribbean and later with her sister-in-law Clara Dickinson Schell to Germany, Canada and other locations.
She is survived by three daughters and sons-in-law, Dallas Dickinson (Mike McQuary) of Dayton, Lois Vankat (Ray) of Tacoma, and Jennie Dickinson (Jay Ball) of Dayton; five brothers, Howard Harris of
Winnemucca, Nev., Oliver Harris of Kennewick, John Harris of Dayton, Tom Harris of Boise, and Ken Harris of Henderson, Nev.; eight grandchildren, Abbie Broughton Marsh, Alexa Blood Broughton, Benton
Broughton, Robin and Clara Dickinson-McQuary, John and Josilyn Vankat, Daniel Harrington; two step-grandchildren, Jayson and Heather Ball;
and three great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband, Ben; her sister, Frances
Russell; a daughter and son-in-law, Zena and Bill Broughton; and a granddaughter, Emily Jo Dickinson-
A memorial service will be held at the Dayton First Congregational Church at 2 p.m. Friday, March 18, 2011, followed by a reception. Memorial contributions may be made to the Dayton First Congregational
Church, 214 S. 3rd St., or the Ben Dickinson Scholarship Fund, c/o Dayton School District, 609 S. 2nd St.