Sally Sutherland, 63

A passion for teaching

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Sally Draper Sutherland, 63, a longtime Oak Park resident, died peacefully at the Rainbow Hospice Ark in Park Ridge on May 28, 2013. Born on Aug. 13, 1949 in Wilmington, Del., she spent her early years in Pennsylvania and Tennessee. After attending high school in Northfield, Mass., she graduated in 1971 from Rhodes College in Memphis, Tenn. She traveled extensively in Europe during most of 1972 and began her teaching career in earnest in New Orleans in 1973. In 1975 she moved to Oak Park, married, began work at School District 401 in Elmwood Park and, in the next several years, received her master's degree from National Louis University.

During this period, she volunteered as a tour docent for the Frank Lloyd Wright Preservation Trust. In her long teaching career in Illinois, she was a fifth-grade classroom teacher, a reading specialist, and an adjunct faculty member for teacher training at National Louis and Concordia universities. She taught a total of 37 years in Tennessee, Louisiana and Illinois. Even in her last teaching assignment at Concordia, she retained an ardent enthusiasm for, and commitment to, the classroom experience.

More privately, she centered her life on her family, as a devoted wife, mother, sister and aunt. Traveling and reading were major passions, and needlework and enjoying the beach were her favorite pastimes. She was extremely proud of her son's academic and athletic accomplishments and loved cheering for him at his high school and college football games.

She was deeply loved and will be missed for her thoughtfulness and wonderful sense of humor.

Sally Sutherland is survived by her husband, Al Pickard; her son, David Pickard; her siblings, Tina (John) Poag and Doug Sutherland; her nieces, Karyn (Eric) Roed and Emily Poag (Dan Amabile); and countless friends and relatives. She was preceded in death by her parents, Donald and Marjorie Sutherland.

A memorial service to celebrate Sally's life will be held on Saturday, June 29 at 3 p.m. at First United Church, 848 Lake St., Oak Park, followed by a reception at the church.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorial contributions be sent to the American Cancer Society at www.cancer.org/donate; the Oak Park Public Library, 834 Lake St., Oak Park, IL 60301; and/or First United Church of Oak Park, 848 Lake St., Oak Park, IL 60301.

Arrangements were handled by Drechsler, Brown & Williams Funeral Home.

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