Sue Ellen Parrott

                                 Sue Ellen Parrott, age 80, formerly of Potomac, MD, died peacefully on October 16th, 2020 from complications of Parkinson’s Disease. Daughter of Fred and Josephine (Deal) Parrott, Sue Ellen was born in Little Rock, AR, on September 13th, 1940. Sue Ellen lived a fortunate and meaningful life defined by her passion for the arts and intellectual pursuits, commitment to service, and limitless love and devotion to friends and family. Sue Ellen and her younger brother, Fred Parrott Jr., shared many happy times with loving parents and extended family in Arkansas. From an early age, Sue Ellen proved herself to be an exceptional student with a particular interest in the arts. She attended Little Rock Central High and was a senior during the historic integration of the “Little Rock Nine.” Bearing witness to the racism and division in her community inspired her to speak out against injustice and celebrate diversity throughout her life. As an outstanding student, she was awarded a Seven Sisters full scholarship to Wellesley College in Wellesley, MA. This prestigious scholarship transformed her life. She flourished in the intellectual community of Wellesley, where she excelled academically and built enduring friendships.After graduation, she moved to Cambridge, MA, and worked at the Charles Playhouse. It was in Cambridge that she met her former husband, Marcus Sisk, while he was attending Harvard Law School. The couple married in 1964. They lived and worked initially in Washington, DC, and then in American Samoa, where they grew to love the Samoan people. After traveling extensively in the South Pacific, Asia, and Europe, the couple returned to Washington, DC, where Sue Ellen worked for Sargent Shriver at the Office of Economic Opportunity. The couple later moved to Potomac, MD. Sue Ellen devoted herself fully to raising her two daughters, Mary Jo and Erin. She provided constant love and support, and gave her children the best educational and cultural opportunities available. At the same time, she prioritized giving back to her community. She volunteered in her daughters’ schools and in the Washington Wellesley Club. She was active in the Washington Wellesley Club for many years, serving in various roles, including president, and raising scholarship funds for deserving Wellesley students from the DC area.She enjoyed painting, collecting sea shells, and exploring art museums. In the warmer months, she was often in her yard, tending to flowers, herbs, and vegetables which she loved to share with her neighbors. She adored the family cats, and animals in general. She read the newspaper from cover to cover daily. She took a genuine interest in people from all walks of life. After her children left for college, Sue Ellen pursued politics professionally, first as the office manager for the League of Women Voters, Montgomery County chapter, then as administrator at the Trilateral Commission. At the commission, she particularly enjoyed working with her intellectually curious colleagues and traveling the globe for conferences. Sue Ellen and Marc divorced, and she fully embraced life on her own terms. She moved into a beautiful new home in Potomac filled with the art she collected from her world travels. She enjoyed frequent visits with her friends and daughters, and volunteered at the National Zoo.After more than 40 years of living in the Washington area, Sue Ellen spent her retirement in the Boston area to be near her daughters and grandchildren. In her final years of life, she lived at Goddard House in Brookline, MA and Newbridge on the Charles in Dedham, MA. In spite of the challenges of living with Parkinson’s disease, she never lost her warm personality or her ability to connect meaningfully with the people around her. She was an inspiration and a source of great joy to her children and grandchildren. She is survived by her devoted daughters and sons-in-law: Mary Jo Sisk and David Grossman of Newton; Erin and Jared Hawkins of Westwood; and her beloved grandchildren: Will, Carina, Luke, and Michaela Grossman; Owen and Aria Hawkins. She was a loving sister to her late brother Fred and sister-in-law Norma Parrott, as well as a caring aunt to her niece, Michelle Parrott. She was loved deeply by her family and many friends who will miss her dearly. Due to the current health crisis, funeral services are private. In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be made to the Wellesley College Scholarship Fund
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