Sue Ellen Wheeler of Lebanon, TN passed away in her home on Wednesday March 8th, 2023 surrounded by her loving husband and four children. She is survived by her husband, William Earle “Bill” Wheeler and her four children, Meredith Sue Wheeler, William Edward “Ted” Wheeler, Courtney Katherine Wheeler, Andrew Douglas “Drew” Wheeler and her four grandchildren, Grace Katherine Wheeler, Eleanor Sue Wheeler, Fiona Rose Wheeler and William Rollin Wheeler.
Sue Ellen was born on August 16th, 1947 in Dubuque, Iowa to Faye Edward Miller and Katherine Lola “Kaye” Miller. She had a brother, Frank Anthony “Tony” Miller who she often spoke of fondly. Her parents and brother preceded her passing.
Growing up in Dubuque, Sue Ellen was always by her big brother’s side. They spent time at the family cabin on Fentress Lake and went boating and fishing together on the Mississippi River. During her teenage years, Sue Ellen spent time traveling abroad with her Aunt Dixie. In her college years, Sue Ellen attended nursing school and acquired foundational medical skills that she’d later put to use starting her own, successful medical transcription business.
While attending church she met and fell in love with her husband, Bill Wheeler. They married on May 23, 1975 and soon thereafter Sue Ellen gave birth to her first daughter, Meredith, followed in close succession by a son, Ted, then another daughter, Courtney, and another son, Drew. As both an accomplished business woman and dedicated mother, Sue Ellen would run her medical transcription business by night so that she could be with her children during the day. Her energy, will, confidence, and intelligence were incomparable - she was truly a force of nature. She believed in education and worked steadfastly to ensure opportunities for higher education were available to all her children.
Sue Ellen’s personal interests were diverse and included a love of animals, art, music, politics and literature. She played the piano and loved to listen to and talk about music with her family. She loved to read and always favored books about or written by people she admired. Sue Ellen voted in every election and keenly followed local, state and federal politics. With so many interests and her vast knowledge, Sue could strike up a conversation with anyone about anything. Her super power was to make a perfect stranger feel heard, healed, loved, and understood. Later in life, she developed a deep fondness for Shelties and cared for many displaced, senior dogs that no other family would adopt.
Sue Ellen was passionate about worthy causes and would often request donations to them in honor of her birthday or other special occasions. Per her wishes, a funeral or memorial service will not be held but those wishing to honor her passing may do so by donating to the World Central Kitchen, a cause she had much admiration for during the later years of her life. Donation details may be found here: https://wck.org/donate
She leaves behind a legacy of love and devotion to others and may her epitaph be an inspiration to all: “every day was a gift”.
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