Obituary for Suellen Jackson-Boner

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Suellen Jackson-Boner

February 5, 1947 - April 4, 2020


Suellen Jackson-Boner passed away April 4, 2020, fighting renal cancer that had metastasized to her spine and other organs. She was born on February 5, 1947 in Indianapolis, Indiana to Henry and Martha (Schuhmacher) Jackson.

She graduated from Tech High School and received a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from Indiana University.

Suellen was an advocate for social justice all her life especially people with disabilities. For 35 years, she worked for the Governor’s Council for People with Disability and was its Executive Director from 1980 until she retired in 2015. Suellen served under seven different Indiana Governors. She was present on July 26, 1990, when President George H. Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act into law. Suellen was a youth director at North Salem Baptist Church when she was 18 years old. She was a middle school teacher at an intercity, Indianapolis school. She founded the first intercity Montessori Preschool center in Indianapolis. Suellen was a high school counselor at Tech High School. She also contributed greatly to improvements in community services, supports access and livability, and more recently, championed the livable communities movement.

Suellen loved to travel and has been lucky enough to visit every state in the Union and all of the National Parks. Also, she has traveled to southeast Asia visiting Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong, Beijing, and Tokyo and all of Western Europe. She loved her visits to England, Scotland, Wales, and Ireland and the Scandinavian countries. When visiting Russia, she marveled at the palaces.

Suellen collected Victorian antiques. She also adored afternoon high tea, both as a patron and as a host, but most of all she enjoyed stimulating conversation with others.

Suellen is survived by her mother, Martha Jackson (107 years old); husband, Don Boner; stepchildren, Zirque M. Bonner, Freda Love Smith; grandchildren, Jordan Bonner, Jonah Smith, and Henry Smith; brother, James (Gloria) Jackson; nieces and nephews, Andrea Jackson, Ben Anderson Jr., Debbie Anderson Dryer, Michael Anderson, Susan M. Lanier (Anderson Whitlock), George Anderson, and their spouses, all their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.
She is preceded in death by her father, Henry Stanley Jackson (1912-1996) and her half-brother Ben Anderson, Sr. ( 1932-1987).

Don Counts posted on April 9, 2020

Suellen was a wonderful lady and accomplished so much for the disability community. I especially remember and enjoyed our dances together at the GCPD conferences.


Marjorie Kienle posted on April 8, 2020

I was very fortunate to have known Suellen when I served on the Indiana Council for People with Disabilities. She brought so much joy to anyone she was around. And how could you not love her hats. My sincerest and heartfelt condolences.


Marjorie Kienle posted on April 8, 2020

I was very fortunate to have known Suellen when I served on the Indiana Council for People with Disabilities. She brought so much joy to anyone she was around. And how could you not love her hats. My sincerest and heartfelt condolences


Diane Graves posted on April 8, 2020

She was a remarkable lady. All of us are richer for having known her. My love and heartfelt condolences to Don and the family.


Patricia McGuffey posted on April 7, 2020

SueEllen was such a special person. She always had a smile and a kind word. However, she wasn’t boring- she added something unique and lovely for all is us. Prayers to the family.


 


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