Susan L. Sellers (Druzbik) of Fredonia, the retired director of special education for the Orchard Park school district, died Sunday, March 10, 2013, at her Fredonia home under the care of Hospice Chautauqua County after a long battle with brain cancer. She was 61.
Susan was born in Lackawanna, N.Y., to the late Joseph and Irene Niedziela Druzbik. Mrs. Sellers was a graduate of West Seneca West High School and D'Youville College with a major in special education. After six years as a special education teacher in Lackawanna, during which she earned a master's degree from Buffalo State, Mrs. Sellers entered Columbia University, where she earned advanced degrees in special education and psychology.
As a graduate assistant to Dr. Margaret Connor, she was part of a group that advised Congress on the creation of the federal law ensuring equal access to education for all handicapped children.
Susan L. Sellers
Upon completion of her studies, Mrs. Sellers joined the special education faculty at SUNY Geneseo, where she taught and supervised student teachers in special education. She then joined Erie 1 BOCES as special education supervisor. After four years with BOCES, Mrs. Sellers joined the Gateway School, where she was director of education for three years. For the next decade Mrs. Sellers served as director of special education for the Orchard Park school district, where she helped create a culture of inclusion for special education students into the mainstream of the district's regular education programs.
Upon her retirement in 2001, Mrs. Sellers became a certified interior designer and maintained a successful design consulting practice until she became ill.
Mrs. Sellers was a member of the League of Women Voters. She was a past board member of the D'Youville College Alumni Association and the WCA Home in Fredonia, where she served as secretary. Her most cherished activity was working as a volunteer serving patients being cared for by Hospice Chautauqua County.
In addition to being an accomplished watercolor artist, Mrs. Sellers was an expert skier and an avid golfer. She was a member of the Moon Brook Country Club Women's Golf Association. The highlights of her golf career included scoring a hole-in-one while playing at the Griffin Gate Club in Kentucky and receiving a private lesson from Gary Player during a Champions Tour tournament in Nashville, Tenn.
Survivors include her husband, Ron Sellers; stepson, Wayne (Stacey) Sellers of Montreal, Quebec, Canada; and three grandchildren: Haley, Nolan and Brooke.
She is predeceased by her parents, Joseph and Irene Druzbik; and stepson Eric Sellers.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Susan's memory may be made to Hospice Chautauqua County, 20 W. Fair-mount Ave., Lakewood, NY 14750.
Friends may call Wednesday 2-5 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. at the LARSON-TIMKO Funeral Home, 20 Central Ave., Fredonia. Funeral Services will be held at the Trinity Episcopal Church, 11 Day St., Fredonia, N.Y., Thursday March 14, 2013, at 11 a.m.
Ron expresses his gratitude to the board and staff of Hospice Chautauqua County for their understanding, kindness and care. To Dr. Raj, Sandy Gopalan, David Prince and Susan Marsh for being such wonderful friends, and to the many others who supported Susan throughout her illness. Online condolences may be made at larsontimkofuneralhome.com.