One of Beckley's most influential leaders, Susan Landis passed away this Friday.
"She was my mentor. She taught me the spirit of volunteerism. She was always there when I had a problem about what to do and how to do it," said friend of Landis, Glenda Wait.
Wait first met Susan Landis 13 years ago. Since then, Wait has been an active member in Beckley's Rotary club. She says Landis' dedication to public service inspired much of her work in the Rotary Club.
"She taught me that when you have a talent, you don't hide it. You use it and you use it for the good of the community. So I feel that I've become fully immersed in the community because of Susan Landis," Wait added.
Susan Landis was involved in a seemingly countless number of community organizations in Beckley, although she dedicated more than 30 years of work to the Beckley Area Foundation. In fact, last December the board voted to create the Susan Landis Youth Philanthropists to honor her and her work to promote positive change in the community.
"She believed in experiencing all Beckley has to offer and supported the arts, education, recreation and public service, not just in Beckley but Raleigh County. If there was a community event, Susan was there and she often had a crowd of people joining her," said Beckley Area Foundation President, Conrad Cooper.
But as prevalent as she was in Beckley, much of her work was done behind the scenes.
"I think the most interesting thing about Susan is that she did things quietly. There were times when she was very out front and she was getting credit for being the lead person on particular projects, but she was very good at behind the scenes work," said friend of Landis, Tom Cushman.
While her friends and colleagues say she lived a full life and greatly helped her community, they know she passed on far too soon.
"I think she got to travel and enjoy her granddaughter and her son quite a bit, but she had more mountains to climb," said friend of Landis, Mike Cavendish.
Landis' family is currently making arrangements for her funeral with Melton Mortuary. Friends and loved ones can sign the online guest book. A memorial is planned for 1 p.m. on Wednesday, July 19, 2017 at Beckley Presbyterian Church on S. Kanawha St. The family has asked that donations in her memory be made to the Beckley Area Foundation.