A Sacred Moment


Suellen Elizabeth (Kurtz) Barth

September 25, 1951 - March 02, 2015

Sue died March 2, 2015, in Darrington WA, from complications while recovering from an extended hospital stay. She was only 63 years young. Sue was born September 25, 1951 in Seattle, WA and was soon after adopted by Verne and Lenora (Lee) Kurtz. She liked to tell the story of her adoption as told to her by her parents: They weren't able to have their own children, but they were glad to be able to "choose" her, like choosing a favorite candy bar. And they got to pick her like a delicious Hershey bar, rather than have no choice and end up with one of those yucky Seven Up bars.

Sue grew up in North City, up above Motorcycle Hill, with her parents Verne and Lee and older brother Tom. She was born a "tomboy" and hated the girlie clothes, hairdos, ribbon and bows that her mom dressed her up in. She enjoyed playing outside, getting dirty, and having adventures with the neighborhood kids. Sue attended North City Elementary, Kellogg Junior High, and graduated from Shoreline High School in the class of 1969. Sue made lifelong friends wherever she went. You could be driving around anywhere in the state of Washington and she would say "Oh look, there's "so-and-so' " and it always was the person she thought it was.

After graduation Sue attended Edmonds Community College, She worked various jobs including volunteering with political campaigns, going house to house as a census taker and working with special needs kids at Fircrest School. Through her mother-in-law, Marylu Barth. she was very involved with the King County Council of Campfire. Sue also liked to go to local venues and watch bands play.She was known to rule as the Rock & Roll trivia queen at Cheeseburger Deluxe shows. On February 14, 1970 she was married to Steve Barth in a small ceremony where she was attired in a purple and green paisley mini-dress, a very "Sue" kind of outfit. Even though she was quite obviously "expecting" the lady pastor finished by stating that she "hoped the marriage would be blessed with children". Sue and Steve were "blessed" with their only daughter Rachelle Shannon Barth on March 19, 1970.

Sue, Steve and Rachel spent their first few years living in various places with friends, family and band mates. In 1974 Sue and Steve bought a house off 164th in Lynnwood, which was considered the "boonies" by most at that time.Sue went to work with her friend Helen Cosgrove as a book keeper for a restaurant chain called The Delis. In 1977 Sue and Steve parted but remained lifelong friends and spent all holidays and occasions with their daughter and families. Sue stayed with The Deli corporation after it was purchased by CJ Worm and worked there in various positions until 1984.

In 1988 when Sue's daughter Rachel finished school at Lynnwood High, Sue moved for a brief time to Redmond WA and then decided to move to Darrington WA and live at a friend's home that she had previously spent time in and loved. She was there a year or two when she met and fell in love with Warren "Tolly" Tollenaar . Tolly became an instant member of the family and they remained together the rest of her life.

Sue's first grandson Alex was born May 17, 1994 and they spent many fun times together. Including family camping trips to the ocean, trips to Birch Bay and Silver lake, 4th of Julys in Chelan, hanging out at the Darrington Rock Festivals and their Legend of Zelda video game marathons. She was always very proud of Alex and was really excited when he was accepted into the University of Washington upon graduation and subsequently into the Architecture program.

Sue was a huge Seahawks and Husky football fan and loved watching and attending the games. She especially loved Steve Largent and proudly displayed his poster on her bedroom wall next to Bruce Springsteen and a portrait of Jesus. All of her life some of Sue's other favorite pastimes were camping outdoors, listening to music, attending concerts (especially Bruce), watching movies and TV shows. It would drive her crazy if there was an actor or actress on something she was watching and she couldn't figure out who they were and where she knew them from. Sue loved collecting records, movies, frogs and then later giraffes, her home is filled with all of these things. Sue loved animals and always had a variety of dogs and cats around.

Although Sue only had one daughter, she was like a second "adopted" mother to many of Rachel's friends, most especially Rachel's sisters Tara and Malyssa, as well as the "kids" she met living in Darrington. She was a great friend to many people both young and old.

Sue was preceded in death by her father Verne Virgil Kurtz in 1970, her daughter-in-law Talitha Miranda Winters in 2010, her mother Lenora May Kurtz in 2012 as well as far too many close friends and family members in the last few years.

Sue is survived by her daughter Rachelle Shannon Barth, son-in-law Travis Roth and grandson Alexander Travis Roth of Lake Stevens, WA. Rachel's dad Stephan Barth of Everett, WA, Rachel's sisters Tara Elizabeth Kaestner Barth, Malyssa Renee Reedy, Malyssa's son Oliver and their mother Laura Kaestner all of Sedro Wooley, WA. She is also survived by Warren Dale Tollenaar and his mother Vivian Tollenaar of Darrington WA, stepson Brian Dale Tollenaar, daughter-in-law Jennifer Jankowski, grandsons Dorian Bodie Tollenaar, Casten Kai Tollenaar and Kinden Dale Tollenaar, all of Everett WA as well as Jennifer's children Natalie and Kole Jankowski of Arlington WA, also granddaughter Brittney Ann Winters, Brent Travathan and great grandson Brody James Trevathan of Panama City Florida and many more family members in and around Chillicothe, Missouri. Suellen will be greatly missed by all of her many friends and extended family members and her special kitty Jackie.


There will be a funeral service held at 11am Saturday March 28, 2015 at First Congregational Church of Maltby 21111 86th Ave SE Snohomish WA followed by a short burial service at 2pm at Floral Hills cemetery 409 Filbert Rd, Lynnwood, WA 98036 all friends and family are welcome to attend and feel free to show your Seahawks spirit.

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