You are here


We sadly announce the sudden passing of our mother, Susan Hagen (nee Kotyk), of Fort Frances, Ont. on Friday, March 16, 2018 at her residence.

Susan was born in Fort Frances to the late Nestor and Shirley Kotyk on Feb. 12, 1951.

She was the second of four children.

As a child she jumped over the pine trees planted at Sixth Street School and then attended Fort Frances High School as a teen.

She married the first of three husbands in 1968 and began her career as a mother shortly thereafter. She had two daughters, Pamela and Brenda and then a son, Mac (Alan) with her first husband Tinker Helseth. Ten years later she had another son, Luke, with her second husband Ed Carlson. Maybe it was because he was her baby but Luke was always lovingly referred to as her favourite. Much to the amusement of her smarter, better looking children.

Susan did many things well—but baking was near the top. She operated Mother's Corner Cupboard out of her home on Front Street in Emo. Many people enjoyed and fondly remember her cookies, pies and cakes.

Susan was a gifted gardener and spent many hours tending her flower gardens and yard. She always had a patio table set up and welcomed any and all to sit and share a Coca-Cola, cigarette and visit. This love of smoking could possibly be why she left us at the early age of 67.

She spent many years employed as a support worker for Sunset Country Psychiatric Survivors, an organization of which she was also a member.

Susan had a fun and generous personality. You never had to wonder what she might be thinking as she was always sure to let you know.

She was exceptionally creative and loved to dance and sing. Her children are especially grateful for the many, many stories she would share of family, friends and neighbours. She had a gift for keeping memories alive.

Susan also shared her passionate faith in Jesus regularly and unashamedly.

She had an indomitable spirit that encouraged her family and friends to persist in the face of many struggles.

Susan will be lovingly remembered by her children, Pamela Swift, Brenda (Blake) Anderson, Mac (Maria) Helseth and Luke (Lacey) Carlson; her grandchildren, Matthew and Jessie Swift, Maren, Reeve, Amy and Maggie Anderson, Wyatt, Ellery and Kaz Helseth and Archer Carlson; her siblings, Randy (Betty) Kotyk, Krista Sweet and Elizabeth (Walter) Breda; and numerous nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by her parents, Nestor and Shirley.

A celebration of Susan's life will take place this summer.

Online condolences may be offered at