Mary Susan Taft, 83, Moyie Springs, was born June 13, 1940, in New Borough, New York, to Fannie Bell and James Bishop. She died January 8, 2024. Memorial services will be held at 4 p.m. Sunday, January 28, at the Seventh-Day Adventist Church, 513353 Highway 95, Bonners Ferry.
Mary Sue was the first child born to the happy couple. Her parents moved back to Mississippi to be near family, and within two and a half years Mary Sue became the eldest of four beautiful sisters. Tragedy struck shortly after Mary Sue’s twin sisters were welcomed into the family with the passing of their mother in December, 1942.
With World War II in full swing, James’ work took the family to Long Beach, California, in 1945. Mary Sue began school and proved to be an excellent student. Her beautiful penmanship was second to none, and she gratefully gave credit to the rehabilitation therapy done while overcoming a severe bout of polio during grade school.
Mary Sue graduated with honors from Glendale Adventist Academy in 1956 at 16 years of age. The pages of her school annuals are covered with proclamations by her teachers and friends that she was the sweetest person they had ever known.
While home on break from Pacific Union College, Mary Sue met the love of her life. A handsome young serviceman, Robert (Bob) M. Taft, was introduced to her by mutual friends. Bob was smitten with Mary Sue and set out to win her affections. They married on September 7, 1961.
Throughout their 54 years together Bob would often say, “Mary Sue is my greatest positive influence and the best thing that ever happened to me.”
Mary Sue worked at the Voice of Prophecy in Glendale, California, and was passionate about the evangelistic ministry she served. The couple later moved to Barstow, California, where she worked as an administrative assistant in a physician’s office and continued sharing the love and hope of Jesus with others. An active member of her local church family, Mary Sue served as a church deaconess, community service center volunteer, greeter, teacher and much more.
She was known for her fabulous cooking and blessed many people with meals in times of need. A gracious host, Mary Sue along with Bob enjoyed gathering friends and family round their dining room table.
Unable to become a mother herself, Mary Sue blessed her nieces and nephews by being an amazing aunt. She was a dedicated matriarch to her sisters and extended family, never missing a special occasion or opportunity to celebrate and support those she loved. She and Bob shared a love of dogs, and their home was filled with various breeds and sizes of four legged companions throughout the years. One could only hope to be so lucky as to be one of Mary Sue’s dogs!
In 2004, they began to build their home in Moyie Springs. Mary Sue considered the view overlooking the river a little taste of Heaven’s beauty on earth. The colorful birds and other wildlife frequently seen from her windows inspired praise and wonder for God’s creative power. She loved gardening, carefully planting seeds and patiently watching them grow under God’s care. She planted seeds not only in the earth’s soil but in the hearts of all she touched.
Mary Sue is preceded in death by her mother and father, husband Bob, three sisters, and nephew Michael Roberts. She is survived by four nieces and four nephews in whose hearts she will always be treasured.