Suzanne Wages Langcuster

Suzanne Wages Langcuster, 85, passed away peacefully at Terrace Manor Nursing Home in the early morning of Jan. 8 after a long but courageous battle with dementia.

Suzanne was born June 19, 1935, in Carbon Hill, though shortly thereafter her family moved their store to Russellville, where she spent virtually her entire life.

She was preceded in death by her husband, James Cecil Langcuster Sr., and her parents Erskine Berry and Nina Wakefield Wages. She is survived by her sons, Jim Langcuster (Beth), Auburn, and John Langcuster (Christy), Ridgeland, Miss.; grandchildren Sarah Beth Langcuster (Mark Kleist), Auburn, Maggie Langcuster (Alec Harris), Auburn, Jackson Langcuster (Madeline), Huntsville, and Caroline Suzanne and Grace Merritt Langcuster, Ridgeland, Miss.; sisters Jane Wages Forman (Charles), Fort Worth, Texas, and Dianne Wages Pace (Barry), Russellville; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Suzanne earned her Bachelor of Science in elementary education from the University of Alabama in 1957 and her Master of Science in elementary education from the University of North Alabama in 1976 and was a member of the Psi Chapter of Alpha Gamma Delta Sorority at the University of Alabama.

She was also a member of Eastern Star and the Alpha Epsilon Chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma Honorary Teacher Sorority.

Suzanne taught in the Russellville City Schools as a piano teacher, a public music instructor and as a second-, third- and fourth-grade teacher. She is fondly remembered by many former students as the most influential and informative teacher of their lives.

She was recognized by Russellville City Schools as Teacher of the Year.

Suzanne possessed a deep and abiding Christian faith and throughout her adult life taught Sunday school to both middle and high school students. She is also recalled by many former Sunday school students as having played a formative role in the sharpening and strengthening of their faith.

She was recognized by the Russellville First United Methodist Church as Woman of the Year in 2001. Suzanne and her husband, Cecil, to whom she was married for 63 years, were honored as the United Methodist Couple of the Year.

Like many in her family, Suzanne was an accomplished pianist who gladly shared her talents in support of many church-related and civic-related events throughout her life. She also mastered several other instruments, including the guitar, the ukulele, the harmonica and the dulcimer.

Suzanne was blessed with many creative talents, most notably her artistic ability as an accomplished painter, particularly of florals, and some of her artwork is displayed in several homes and public places throughout the Shoals region. In addition, she enjoyed writing and poetry and even compiled poems about her loved ones and had some of her work published regionally.

A committed civic leader and volunteer, she was recognized as Volunteer of the Year by the Franklin County Chamber of Commerce in 2008 and was an Unsung Hero Nominee at the Franklin County Development Authority’s inaugural banquet in 2008.

After her retirement, Suzanne hosted her own cooking show, “What’s Cooking, Suzanne?” on a local cable television channel and also wrote a food column for the Franklin County Times, featuring cooking advice as well as recipes that she and her family had accumulated and perfected over decades.

Through her years in assisted living and despite her deepening dementia, Suzanne continued to exhibit the deep warmth and kindness to others that distinguished her throughout her life.

She forged close friendships with the other residents, always stopping by their rooms to offer love and encouragement, especially after hospital stays.

The family extends its heartfelt thanks to the superior care provided to Suzanne by the Country Cottage and later by Terrace Manor Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Center, both located in Russellville.

The family is planning a graveside service at 1 p.m., Jan. 16 at Knights of Pythias Cemetery, Russellville. The service will be on Facebook Live for those who cannot attend.

Pallbearers will include Brian Pace, Brent Pace, David Hester, Jackson Langcuster, David Scruggs and Grant Atkins.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations in Suzanne’s memory be made to the Russellville First United Methodist Church’s discretionary fund, which is used to support the local food pantry and other indigent-related needs. The address is 311 N. Jackson Ave., Russellville, AL 35653.