Cover photo for Susan Michaels's Obituary
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1934 Susan 2018

Susan Michaels

August 22, 1934 — October 20, 2018


August 22, 1934 - October 20, 2018

Susan "Mary" Michaels passed away peacefully in her home with her sons at her side
Saturday October 20, 2018. Mary was born August 22, 1934 to Paul Lester Burger and
Sue Mary Farris Burger in Manchester, TN. She spent the early years of her life in Manchester,
Oak Ridge, and Bluff City, TN and often shared many happy childhood memories of her and her
dog Skippy. Mary graduated from Manchester Central High School and then moved to Orlando
to attend nursing school at what was then Orange Memorial Hospital (now Orlando Regional
Medical Center). She graduated in 1956 and proudly kept a picture of her graduating
class in her living room. Mary worked as a nurse at Charity Hospital in New Orleans and
Erlanger Hospital in Chattanooga, TN. While she was in nursing school she met
Dr. John "Jack" Patrick Michaels an OB/GYN physician at Orange Memorial Hospital and they
were married on March 22, 1958 at her parents house in Manchester, TN. A year later they
were blessed with the birth of their first son Paul Kenneth "Ken" Michaels and then two years
later were blessed with the birth of their second son Ward Farris Michaels. Jack and Mary built a
house on Lake Pineloch not far from the hospital so that Jack could quickly get there to
deliver babies. At that time, their house was surrounded by mostly orange groves and only a
few other houses. The family spent a lot of time enjoying fishing, swimming and water
skiing on Lake Pineloch with friends and neighbors. Jack passed away in 1993, but Mary
never moved from that home, living there for over 60 years. Mary also loved going to New
Smyrna Beach where the family spent many happy summers fishing, swimming and taking
long walks on the beach. Mary appointed herself the family lifeguard and had no
hesitation waving her sons and their friends into shallower water if she felt they were out to far
to suit her. Mary also enjoyed working part time at her husband's medical practice for many
years. Those who knew Mary knew that she had a special place in her heart for children and
animals. Where ever she went, if she passed a small child or someone with a pet, she would
always take the time to stop and tell them how cute they were and ask how old they were.
There was never any question though that Mary's crowning glory was being a mother and a
grandmother. There was never anything that she cherished more than spending time with
her children and her grandchildren. She would play ball, go fishing, sing and dance or anything
else the grandchildren wanted to do and nothing could have made her happier. These happy
memories will be cherished by them forever. Mary was a member of St. James Cathedral and
The Country Club of Orlando. Mary was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2007 and later
diagnosed with Alzheimer's Disease.. She fought a long and courageous battle,
but despite it all, she still managed to enjoy life to the fullest and never lost her kind and gentle
spirit and ever present smile. Mary was blessed to have many wonderful friends that she loved
dearly (Barbara, Judy, Elaine, Joanne and many others) and were so special to her.
Mary was also blessed to have the most loving and compassionate caregivers that
anyone could ever have. The family will be forever grateful to Kay, Patsy and Julian for all of the
love and care that they gave to her. Mary is survived by her sons
Dr. Paul Kenneth "Ken" Michaels (Kathy) and Ward Farris Michaels
and grandchildren Kaitlin, Jack and Mary Martha. Mary dearly
loved her stepchildren John Patrick "Rick" Michaels Jr. and Carole Angela "Angel" Michaels and
step granddaughter Kimberly Wilson (John) as if they were her own. Mary is also survived by
sisters, Sarah Bryan of Fayetteville, TN, Betsy Allen (Lee) of St. Mountain, GA and Paulette
Hecklinger of Antioch, TN and brother, Kennerly Burger (Judy) of Murfreesboro, TN
A funeral Mass will be held at St. James Cathedral at 215 N. Orange Ave. Orlando on Saturday
October 27 at 10:00 followed by a reception in the Social Hall and burial service at Woodlawn
Mary requested that in lieu of flowers donations be made in her memory and sent to:
The Orlando Health Foundation 3160 Southgate Commerce Blvd. Suite 50, Orlando, FL 32806
or call 407-841-5194.



St James Catholic Church
215 North Orange Avenue
Orlando, FL  32806
Saturday, October 27, 2018


Woodlawn Memorial Park
400 Woodlawn Cemetery Road
Gotha, FL  34734
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Susan Michaels, please visit our flower store.


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