Sue Ann Scalf, born May 30, 1935, passed away peacefully at Prattville Baptist Hospital on May 7, 2018 after a long illness. Sue was predeceased by her parents, Leland J. Wolfe and Ada Wolfe Benjamin, her spouse, Sam Scalf, and their daughter, Leslie Leland Scalf. She leaves behind a daughter, Kathy (Wendell) Hartzog, granddaughter, Leslie Hartzog, grandson, Christopher (Courtney) Brink, great-granddaughter, Annie Brink and Skye and Jonah Shade. Sue also leaves behind her dear friend and companion, Tony Ramone.
Sue, a native of Barbourville, Kentucky and longtime resident of Prattville, Alabama, spent her childhood traveling with her parents and attending schools in Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia and Ohio – fifteen different schools – before marrying in the summer of 11th grade. She graduated from high school in Hampton, Virginia and attended college at Michigan Tech and Troy State University in Alabama where she graduated summa cum laude and earned a master’s degree in English.
Travels with her Air Force husband included five years in Michigan, where he served with the Air Force ROTC program, a year near San Francisco, and three years in England. Before her retirement Mrs. Scalf taught middle- and high-school English at The Montgomery Academy and college level classes in creative writing and poetry at Troy State University Montgomery.
Sue was a highly acclaimed and nationally published poet, two of her eight books having been nominated for the prestigious Pulitzer Prize, and four named “Book of the Year” by the Alabama State Poetry Society. Hundreds of her poems have won awards (eight Hackney awards as well as the William Stafford Award) and were published in literary journals such as The Southern Review, The Southern Poetry Review, Cumberland Poetry Review, CrossConnect, Tar River Review, The English Journal, and in a number of anthologies. Her reviews and articles have appeared in First Draft and Elk River Review. In 2011 she won first prize in publication for her chapbook, To Stitch a Summer Sky. Her last book and legacy, Autumnal Heart – The Collected Poems of Sue Scalf, was published in 2017.
Mrs. Scalf’s family would like to thank her caregivers and sweet friends, Ann Smith and Sherry Parrett, her hospice caregivers, Elizabeth Puckett, Tracy Payton and Shavonne Wells, as well as Dr. Mohammad Ibrahim.
Funeral services for Mrs. Scalf are Wednesday, May 16, 2018, 11:00 a.m., at Ridout’s-Brown-Service Chapel, 347 E. Main Street, Prattville, Alabama, the Reverend Dr. Travis Coleman, Jr. officiating. The family will receive visitors one hour prior to the service. In lieu of flowers Sue’s family requests that donations be made to Troy University Foundation, 301 Adams Administration Building, Troy, Alabama 36082, or to Union College, c/o College of Advancement, 310 College Street, Box D4, Barbourville, Kentucky 40906, for the benefit of students planning a degree in teaching or writing. Please specify “In Memory of Sue Scalf” on your donations.