Susan Marie Sasser Burley, 75, passed away peacefully on Saturday, November 12, 2022 at the McLeod Hospice House in Florence, South Carolina. Her family has been fumbling around since now that she's no longer here to tell us what to do.
Susan came from humble beginnings. Born on June 1,1947 to a sharecropping family, Susan grew up poor but not deprived. She learned her work ethic in tobacco fields and that getting an education could keep her out of them. In between farm work she excelled at school and sports. Armed with a mean, left-handed push-shot, she lettered in basketball at Ellerbe High School in North Carolina. From high school she moved to Charlotte to continue her education and found her husband, Jerry, and her calling in the same place, Shoney's.
Susan and Jerry would eventually build Shoney's into a successful business and a Florence institution through sheer will and the help of family and friends. Their story is the American Dream and proof that industry, generosity and a life of service are rewarded. Though Shoney's is where most came to know Susan, she was so much more than the restaurant.
Susan loved dogs, Disney, hot tea and English muffins. She was an avid reader, history buff and accomplished traveler. A devout Christian, she served as volunteer, choir member and Elder of John Calvin Presbyterian Church. She was proud of her contributions to hospitalized children and their families and was honored to serve as a member of the McLeod Children's Hospital Advisory and McLeod Foundation Boards. Susan also loved the Arts and delighted in attending Florence Little Theater productions and serving on their board.
In addition to her parents, John Sasser and Mary Colon Sasser, Susan was preceded in death by her husband, Gerald Burley, her son, Allen Burley, brothers, Ralph and Ken Sasser and sister, Judy Richardson.
Susan is survived by her brothers, James Sasser and wife, Shelia, of Charlotte, Merle Sasser and wife, Eomie, of Ellerbe, Benjamin Sasser and wife, Suk, of Florence; 8 nieces and 8 nephews.
A memorial service will be held an 1:00 PM Saturday, November 19 at John Calvin Presbyterian Church. The family will receive friends at the church immediately after the service. Memorials may be made to John Calvin Presbyterian Church, 2000 Marsh Ave, Florence, SC 29501.
Cain Calcutt Funeral Home is honored to serve the Burley family.