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Sue "Mushy" Roberson Morrell


Sue “Mushy” Roberson Morrell, age 92, passed away Tuesday, March 31, 2020 at Commonwealth Senior Living, Abingdon, Va.

Sue Morrell loved her family and her community. The passion of her life was being an educator. Mushy taught for 20 years and every student had a nickname, and a special place in her heart. Mushy loved them all and was beloved by all. Sue was very active in many areas. She volunteered with the Red Cross, past president of the Pilot Club, Hospice of Smyth County, Mount Rogers Shelter Home, Girl Scouts, Retired Teachers Association, Council at St. John’s, Wilderness Road Garden Club, tutoring at the Atkins School, the Lincoln Theatre, loved singing in the Joyful Noise Choir, and always a smiling face at Francis Marion Manor. One of her proudest moments was being Grand Marshall in the Marion Kaleidoscope Christmas Parade. Her infectious smile and love for life will be missed by all who knew and loved her.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Joe F. Morrell; parents, Gus and Marie Roberson; grandson, Chris Wright; and two great-grandchildren.

Sue is survived by her daughters, Harriett Roberts of Mesa, Ariz., Beth Hilton of Johnson City, Tenn., Nancy Breneman and husband, Jim of Las Vegas, Nev., Pattie Lamie and husband, John of Emory, Va.; son, Scott Morrell and wife, Gwenda of Forest, Va.; 12 grandchildren; 22 great-grandchildren; and several close cousins.

A private family graveside service will be held at Happy Valley Memorial Park, Elizabethton, Tenn. A celebration of Mushy’s life will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Smyth County Humane Society, P.O. Box 1124, Marion, Va. 24354.

To share memories of Sue “Mushy” Roberson Morrell, please visit www.seaverbrown.com. Care for Sue’s family has been entrusted to Seaver-Brown Funeral Service & Crematory, 237 East Main Street, Marion, Va. 24354.

To plant memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Sue Roberson Morrell, please visit our flower store.


I had the honor of being Mushy's student for 2 years in Junior High. I had more than one nickname given me, but I remember the first most of all: She had given us a typical first week of school assignment, an essay on My First Week In Junior High. I wrote in mine something like "All my teachers seem pretty nice, except for that Mrs. Morrell." Handing back the papers, she said, "Your nickname is gonna be 'Effie', because that's the grade you're gonna get in this class!" So sad to hear of Mushy's passing, the world is a lesser place without her in it. Fitzie-poo

Tim Fitzpatrick Apr 6 2020 12:00 AM

Wow! In reading all the comments, I'm so sorry I did not have the honor of having Mushy as a teacher. Charlie and I knew her as a friend and blood mobile volunteer. Everyone summed it up so well! I never, ever remember Mushy not having a smile on her face and creating smiles or hysterical laughter on other's faces. For example, the time she drove through the car wash and couldn't get her broken electric window to roll back up! (She was laughing that she and her dog got their weekly bath!!). She was selfless in serving others and looked for opportunities to do so. Your mother had a positive impact on everyone who was fortunate to know her!! You have been in my thoughts and prayers since I last saw you at Commonwealth. I'll never forget the way your mom welcomed my mom back after a stay in the hospital! May God's loving arms hold you tightly during the sad days and may you smile and find delight in remembering all of the good days!! Your mother was one of a kind - as someone else said - "a good and faithful servant." And yes, I'm sure she is making up nicknames in heaven!! Love to all!

Charlie and Carol Apr 6 2020 12:00 AM

In 1981 I was in All Regional Band held in Marion. Mushy and Mr. Morrell were kind enough to open their home to Steve Baker, Pressley Sutherland, and me for the weekend. I have never forgotten them and their kindness and genuine love for us and all high school students.

Lee Lewis Apr 5 2020 12:00 AM

A candle was lit in memory of Sue Roberson Morrell

Lee Lewis Apr 5 2020 12:00 AM

I was not one of the very lucky people to have "Mushy" for a teacher. However, I saw her at the 2009 30th reunion for MSHS and she knew me. My mother also taught school, and Mushy came up to me at the reunion to tell me how sorry she was that my mom had passed away that same year. Now, I sadly have to share the same thoughts with her family. May all of you find the peace and love you need knowing that your mom is smiling in heaven and her light is shining on all of us.

Karen Butts Warner Apr 5 2020 12:00 AM

I did not have the opportunity to have Mrs. Morrell as a teacher and do not feel comfortable calling her Mushy (mom of a friend thing); although I agree that is a very appropriate nickname. I do have schoolhouse memories of her, however, as she spoke with and called out to students in the hallway between classes. A couple of comments I read confirmed my memory that the smile and the nickname did not give you a pass to get into mischief! :) A good teacher and a good lady who will be warmly remembered by many who knew her. God Bless.

Beth Blackwelder Apr 5 2020 12:00 AM

Morrell family: Please accept my heartfelt condolences for your loss. May the many fond memories of Mushy help you cope through this difficult time. Mushy was the greatest teacher - everyones favorite class! Mushy caught me during class putting a warm, deep-from-the-pocket, sticky piece of grape Bubble Yum bubble gum in my mouth, as I was chewing on the wrapper to get the portion of gum that stuck to the paper. This slip-up landed me the well-deserved punishment of writing, 500 times, I will not chew gum in class., and solidified my nickname of Goat per my propensity to gnaw on gum wrappers - Even after my repetitive essay :) Mushy connected with her pupils, made class fun, and imprinted countless Jr. High memories. What a treasure she was. Rest In Peace Mushy. Greatly missed, never forgotten.

John Hendrick Apr 4 2020 12:00 AM

I fondly remember Mushy from Junior High school. One of the highlights of our 1979 thirty year class reunion, in 2009, was when Mushy came to visit with us. My condolences to her family. Rest in peace, Mushy. Rick Olinger

Rick olinger Apr 4 2020 12:00 AM

Mushy was 1 of 3 of my favorite teachers throughout school. She was such a support to me & a bright light in my world through a challenging childhood. Her "nicknames" of everyone was such a compassionate statement of her showing care & love for all. The town & world lost a sweet, smiling angel, but heaven just got a little brighter. Love you & will miss you Mushy.

Denise Paschal Armstrong Apr 4 2020 12:00 AM

A candle was lit in memory of Sue Roberson Morrell

Denise Paschal Armstrong Apr 4 2020 12:00 AM

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