Remembering Susan Cross: An incredible legacy

Susan Cross was always generous – to her friends, to the causes she supported, and to her two companion kelpies. Her decision to leave a bequest to the GI Cancer Institute reflects her philanthropic nature, and her zest for life.

Susan is remembered for having a gift for helping people, and as a fantastic fundraiser. Whatever charity and foundation she was involved with, she threw herself into supporting them.

Born in England, Susan trained and worked as an optometrist before moving to Australia to realise her dream of living on a farm. She bought a property in Yarrowitch and farmed cattle. To some people, moving to the other side of the world and living a completely different lifestyle would have been daunting, but she took it all in her stride. Susan was known for being successful at whatever venture she took on.

After many years farming, Susan moved to Laurieton for a seachange, taking her beloved dogs with her. Her idyllic life near the coast was cut short when she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Susan was determined to fight the cancer, and battled as much as she could, but two years after her diagnosis, she passed away.

Even while she was undergoing treatment, Susan never lost her passion, doing as much as she could when her health allowed. Her positive attitude extended to treatment – she underwent the Whipple operation, a major surgical procedure, and would fly from Port Macquarie to Sydney for last-minute appointments.

Susan was always appreciative of the care she received. The Executor of her Will remembers her saying how fortunate she was to be in Australia because she was given such wonderful care.

She is remembered for her enthusiasm for her hobbies, including dragon boat paddling, which she took up before she became unwell. Susan was still competing up until a few months before she died, even taking a trip to New Zealand. She is remembered as saying, “I may as well go. It’ll be my last paddle.”

Susan was specific with what she would like to do with her Bequest. After she passed away, she wanted her legacy to go to more research, and hopefully to save lives. Her Bequest to the GI Cancer Institute will go towards clinical trials for pancreatic cancer, finding treatments that will save and extend lives, and improve the quality of life of those patients undergoing treatment.

Leaving a gift in your Will, whether large or small, can make a real difference. Your support enables cutting edge research into new treatments that will benefit GI cancer patients and their families beyond your lifetime.

For a confidential conversation to discuss leaving a gift in your Will for GI Cancer research, please contact Nicky Lancaster, Philanthropy Manager, on 1300 666 769 or send an email to

Learn more about leaving a gift in your Will