Susan Gail (Wamback) Jennings, 67


Susan Gail (Wamback) Jennings

Susan Gail (Wamback) Jennings was born on March 2, 1955, in Saginaw, Michigan. In 1973, Sue moved to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan to begin her undergraduate studies at Michigan Technological University (MTU).  During the summer of 1975, while working at Isle Royale National Park on Lake Superior, she met her husband-to-be, Rich Jennings. They married on May 31, 1976. 

In May 1977, Sue graduated from MTU with a Bachelor of Science degree in Fisheries Management. The following year, she moved to Idaho with her husband Rich where, a number of years later, their two children, Paul and Kolleen, were born. While in Idaho, Sue volunteered for a few years as a fisheries technician. In 1987, the family moved to Brookings, Oregon, a small town on the coast, where Sue continued her career as a field fisheries biologist, sampling and inventorying anadromous fisheries. In 1990, the family moved to Petersburg, Alaska, where Sue continued as a field fisheries biologist. After a few years she transitioned from fisheries management to working as a professional writer and editor in the Forest Planning group of the Tongass National Forest, eventually becoming the Forest Planner. 

In 2017, Sue and Rich moved from Petersburg to Juneau, Alaska. Sue was highly respected by her peers and upper management at the Forest Service as evidenced by her last big assignment prior to retirement when, due to her exemplary skills in leading the completion of the Tongass National Forest Land Management Plan, she was tapped to lead the team working on the Chugach National Forest Land Management Plan in Anchorage, Alaska. The Plan was successfully completed just in time for her retirement in April 2020.  

Though Sue received several prestigious awards in her career, her main priority in life was those she held close to her heart. She was always offering support, time and love to both her family and to many people in the communities in which she lived. Over the course of her time in Petersburg, for example, she served as an assistant Girl Scout leader, the President of the local Little League Association, and a volunteer DJ at KFSK radio, hosting the High Country show once a week from 1993 – 97. She was also an avid quilter, erstwhile recreational volleyball player, and overall great lady whose positive attitude, humor and generosity earned her the respect and love of many.

After a decline in physical health exacerbated by complications from cancer, lupus and long-term shingles, Susan Gail (Wamback) Jennings, loving spouse/partner, mother, grandmother ("Nana") and great-grandmother, passed away on December 23, 2022, at the young age of sixty-seven.

She is survived by her husband, Rich Jennings; their daughter, Kolleen Jennings; their son, Paul (Mara) Jennings; granddaughters, Audrey (Maele) Allen and Bianka Jennings; grandsons, Jack Cisney and Konrad Jennings; great grandson, Bjorn Allen; her mother, Betty Ann Wamback; her sisters, Connie, Cheryl and Betty. She was preceded in death by her father, Konrad Wamback.


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