Susan Allison Sayrs

January 1, 2021

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Susan Allison Sayrs, 75, passed away at home on Jan. 1, 2021, showing the grace that marked her life in good times and bad. At the end of an eight-month battle with liver cancer, she died with her family at her side.

Susan was born on June 12, 1945, in High Point, N.C., daughter of Steve and Margaret Allison. She grew up in Huntersville, graduated from the old Huntersville High and headed off to Appalachian State with plans to become a teacher. Her two loves, after family, were children and books. That passion was put on temporary hold when she met a great guy at a party in Charlotte. Jim Sayrs, who was starting his career with Celanese, took Susan on their first date to the old Rheinland Haus German restaurant in Dilworth. That’s where he later proposed. They were married on April 28, 1973.

Jim’s job with Celanese in information technology took them to several states before they settled in Charlotte. That’s where they raised their two sons, Stephen and Andy. Susan returned to school when the boys were older and earned a Bachelors degree in education from UNC Charlotte and a Masters degree in library science from Winthrop University. She worked in the school library and taught in elementary schools in Charlotte and Gastonia.

Friends say Susan rarely angered and forgave quickly. She bore no grudges. Her faith and quiet strength were pushed to the limit in 2018 when their youngest son, Andy, died from a sudden heart attack. He was 38. At the hospital, she said aloud, “Andy, I can’t take care of you anymore.” Jim says she kept her heartbreak mostly to herself and carried on as best as any bereaved parent could.

Susan was active in the Assistance League, whose mission is to help at-risk children. She was a former president and received the Anne Banning Leadership Award, her nomination declaring: “This exceptional member volunteer’s contributions are like the many fine silk threads woven through a beautiful tapestry.” Susan found fellowship in the Genesis-Ownbey Sunday School class at Myers Park United Methodist Church.

Susan is survived by her husband, Jim Sayrs, of Charlotte; their son, Stephen James Sayrs, of Charlotte; her sister, Pamela Allison and her husband, Steve Hill, of Hickory, N.C.; and numerous cousins.

Her family will celebrate her life at a small gathering at 11:00 AM Friday, Jan. 8, 2021 at Myers Park United Methodist. Please join the family for the service via livestreamed at

A gift in Susan’s memory can be made to Hospice & Palliative Care Charlotte Region, 7845 Little Ave., Charlotte, N.C. 28226 or Assistance League of Charlotte, P.O. Box 471112, Charlotte. N.C. 28247. The family is grateful for the care given by Hospice.

Arrangements are in the care of Kenneth W. Poe Funeral & Cremation Service, 1321 Berkeley Ave., Charlotte, NC 28204; (704) 641-7606. Online condolences can be shared at

Share your memories & condolences


  • Wade Kirkland

    I met Susan in a Bible class. I admired Her greatly She was kind and optimistic. She will be remembered and missed.

  • Richard and Grace Wilson

    We were so sad to learn of Susan's passing today on line at the MPUMC service. We immediately watched Susan's funeral service on line. It was lovely! Our thoughts and prayers are with you and all the family. We will be in touch soon.

  • Gigi Rizio

    What a loss to our community. She was such a giving , caring, fun loving person. I will miss our joking around every Wednesday at bridge or Assistance League. I pray for peace for her husband & family. L

  • Melvin McIntosh

    Jim, Susan was such a pleasant person, and a joy to see around the church. Her presence always brightened my day when I was on the staff at Myers Park UMC. I am sorry for your loss and wish that God's greatest comfort will bless you and Stephen during these days.

  • Gay Lachot Brangle

    Susan and I shared an apartment with another classmate after we left Appalachian. We were just starting our working lives; working, playing bridge and having parties with neighbors. My fondest memory of Susan was her kindness toward others. She may have had a grievance with someone but kept it to herself until the appropriate time and place availed itself to speak about it or she just let it go. Generally, Susan was the light-hearted person in our group and enjoyed many hours of laughs and fun together. I will miss her joyful spirit and her enthusiasm for life which was contagious.

  • Lee Sayrs

    Susan stood steadfast for her family and to her work for children. When I needed support when caring for my mother, Susan listened calmly and sympathetically to my calls. She traveled hundreds of miles to stand in for me while I took a break. I remember clearly the day she introduced me to the work of the Assistance League in providing new school clothes to children whose families faced hard times. Susan will be greatly missed by her family and ger community.

  • David A James

    I was with Jim when he met Susan, many years ago. They have been my best friends ever since. I will sorely miss Susan and Jim has my sincerest condolences. My heart aches for him and Stephen.