Born in Atlanta on Dec. 28, 1953, Susan was preceded in death by her parents, Pearl Feldman Arnovitz and Morris Arnovitz, and her sister, Ellen Fae, all of blessed memory. She attended Morningside Elementary School and Grady High School and graduated from the University of Florida. Susan loved the arts; she never missed a debut, an exhibit, a community event or a new Broadway musical in New York. She became a master at scoring tickets to events when the “sold out” sign was already posted.
Susan was a lifelong learner of all things Jewish, attending book and film festivals, forums, debates, lectures, and courses, and traveled near and far to increase her knowledge about Israel and her heritage. She was an active member of numerous Jewish and community organizations. She was especially proud of her support of Hadassah, the Atlanta Jewish Academy, American Jewish Committee, Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta, the Florence Melton School and many others. Susan was the convener of family and friends, hosting large gatherings, whether for holiday observances or for weekly dinners. Her home, filled with her collections of memorabilia, was always a whirlwind of activity and excitement. She opened her doors to all those who wished a place to share holidays, festivals or even a simple meal.
Author of “Susan Stirs Things Up in the Kitchen,” now in its third printing, Susan loved to share recipes through stories. The book has become a standard for Jewish comfort food, though it’s not unusual for her recipes to show up at Christmas and other holiday tables.
Susan was most proud of the family she raised and inspired. Her daughters, Shauna Grosswald (Steven), Dara Grant (Andy), and Jessica Sacks (Jeff), and the 14 grandchildren of her and her husband, David Saltz, were the joy of her life. She reveled in all their accomplishments and loved to be surrounded by them. She attended every recital, graduation, birthday party and sports event, capturing every moment on camera.
During the last six years of her life, Susan suffered from both lymphoma and glioblastoma. Her battle became an inspiration to her entire community. She drew great strength from the support from family and friends who surrounded her. During her lymphoma treatment, her CaringBridge journal went viral and became a must-read far and wide. Her positive attitude permeated her daily life; in fact, it was not unusual for her to have chemo or radiation, then show up at an exercise class or a birthday party. She didn’t have time for cancer.
Susan married David Saltz in 2013, and he was by her side throughout her battles. She is survived by David; three daughters and sons-in-law; eight grandchildren; brother and sister-in-law Eliot and Phyllis Arnovitz; half-sister and brother-in-law Judy and Jimmy Rotenstreich; stepmother Ruth Arnovitz; stepchildren; step-grandchildren; and numerous cousins, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and countless friends. The family thanks the caregivers of the One Group and Weinstein Hospice for their compassion.
An online guestbook is available at www.edressler.com. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Florence Melton School of Adult Jewish Learning, c/o MJCCA, 5342 Tilly Mill Road, Dunwoody, GA 30338, or other charity of one’s choice. Funeral services will be held at 2:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 13, at Ahavath Achim Synagogue, 600 Peachtree Battle Ave. NW, Buckhead, with Rabbis Laurence Rosenthal and David Silverman officiating; burial will follow at Arlington Memorial Park in Sandy Springs. Arrangements by Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care, 770-451-4999.