Susan Diane Aucoin, 61, of American Fork, passed away July 3, 2021 in Provo, surrounded by her loving family after a long battle with ovarian cancer. She was born on June 20, 1960 in Los Angeles to Paul and Martha Rugg and raised in the Sacramento and Fresno areas. She graduated from Fresno High School in 1978. On March 12, 1982 she was sealed to Virgil Clay Aucoin for time and all eternity in the Salt Lake City Temple. They were blessed with three children, and lived in various states as they raised them: Louisiana, Arizona, Kansas, California, and finally settling in Orem, Utah as their kids began to enter middle school. In 2007, Susan and Clay returned to Louisiana to be near Clay’s elderly parents, followed by a stay near Susan’s parents in Mesa from 2010-2012. They then moved to their current home in American Fork in 2013.
Susan is a lifelong member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and served as a Relief Society and Primary president along with numerous other callings and assignments as the family moved about. She is proud of her heritage as a descendant of the Martin Handcart Company. She often spoke of her admiration for their strength and courage, which inspired her to be valiant in her struggles.
Susan owned and operated Housekeepers of California in Moorpark 1988-1989 and Miss Susie’s Superstars in Orem 1996-2006, where she taught 367 preschool students over a 10-year period. Later she had a career with Hobby Lobby Stores in Arizona and Utah as Fabric Dept Coordinator and Assistant Manager from 2010-2018, as well as serving on various store-set teams in Utah, California, Oregon, and Washington.
Susan’s greatest joy was found in being a wife and a mother. She enjoyed being a homemaker and loved to cook for family and friends and hosting family get-togethers. She learned to make her family-famous gumbo from her Lousiana mother-in-law. She instilled a love of learning in her children by reading to them nightly from a young age. They all graduated from Brigham Young University and her sons served missions for the church.
The following quoted instagram posts by Susan highlight how she valued her family and rejoiced in time spent together.
Susan expressed her love for her Mom and Dad: “Best parents ever! The very first blessing in my life was being their daughter. My dad’s love for the Savior was evident in every aspect of his life. He passed away in April from pancreatic cancer. He died alone in a hospital bed, with no family surrounding him, due to COVID restrictions. My heart aches every time I think about that. As a family, we rejoice in the knowledge of his reunions in heaven. Love and miss you dad. My mom has taught me to live with joy amid any circumstances. Her zest for life is contagious and why she is so loved. The influence of my parents have helped to mold me into the person I am today. I’m one lucky girl!”
Susan felt the incredible love and support of her wonderful siblings: “My siblings are my best friends. I would choose to spend time with them over any of my other peers. We all get along so well. I am the third of eight children and am grateful to have been raised in a large family. We used to turn heads because we always looked like a mob scene. Now we turn heads because we are all so good looking!”
Susan described her husband Clay: “He is my rock!” “A good man is hard to find but I lucked out! Clay is my biggest fan and his support during my illness is always given with love and patience. Together forever. Love of my life!”
Susan’s world revolved around the children she delivered into this world: “I have 3 average children that I think are AMAZING! That’s a mother’s prerogative. They show me so much love and support and I’m blessed to have them.”
She loves her grandsons: “My grandsons are the light of my life! The joy they bring me is unmatched. Life is better because of them!”
Susan cherished her little chihuahua companion: “Bella is our chihuahua friend we rescued several months ago. She has been a much needed ray of sunshine and we all just adore her. She is great with the grandsons and is my cuddle buddy when needed.”
Susan sought to live joyfully in her latter years, by traveling to the marriage of her daughter Michelle, visiting the island of Maui with her family, celebrating 1 year early, her 60th birthday:
In February of 2019, Susan and family visited Maui for a long-planned visit to paradise. Susan wrote: “We sailed alongside dolphins and saw whales spouting and breaching! It was an awesome day in Maui. Many fun days in paradise.” When her grandsons broke into dance while watching whales off the coast near sunset, Susan exclaimed: “When you feel the aloha spirit, you just gotta hula!”
On August 9th, 2019 she wrote: “My beautiful daughter, Michelle is now a married woman! Paul is amazing and they make a great pair! August 9th was a perfect day.”
Not knowing if she would reach her 60th, she described in her words: “My 59th Shake Your Booty Birthday Bash was totally groovy! We all had a great time. Family came from Virginia and Arizona, and I was completely surprised when 2 nephews and a niece from Louisiana showed up! Everyone made me feel so loved. Thanks to my family who helped with decorations and food prep. Michelle made the bell bottoms cake, which turned out adorable, and Tim provided the yummy ice cream. Jeff was so gracious to host the event. My life is blessed and I try to live it joyfully!”
Her joy for life was welcomed by all. She lifted those around her.
This quote by Dieter F. Uchtdorf describes Susan best: “She lived joyfully. Not because her circumstances were joyful, but because she was joyful!”
Susan is survived by her husband Clay Aucoin, son Jeffrey (Nicole) Aucoin and grandsons Ryan and Andrew of Layton, son Timothy Aucoin of American Fork, Michelle (Paul) Mosley of Holladay, her mother Martha Rugg of Mesa, sister Paula (John) Erickson of Riverton, brother Michael Rugg of Mesa, sister Sharon Rugg of Orem, sister Linda Luu of Mesa, brother Gregory (Wynn) Rugg of West Jordan, sister Cathy (Tom) Stinson of Mesa, sister Lana (Martin) Stradling of Mesa, and beloved chihuahua Bella. She was preceded in death by her father Paul Rugg of Mesa and brother-in-law Patrick Provonsha of Sarasota, Florida.
Private services were held by her family, however condolences can be shared on her tribute page at andersonmortuary.com