Vicksburg Senior Center to be named in honor of ‘Miss Sue’
Published 3:18 pm Tuesday, March 9, 2021
In 2010, Martha Sue Roberts, known to many as “Miss Sue,” was diagnosed with a gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST), a form of cancer, that would cause her death in 2019.
But after diagnosis, and up to the time of her death on Sept. 13, 2019, Roberts was the consummate public servant, serving across a number of administrations with the city of Vicksburg.
In an interview with The Post in December 2017, Roberts reflected on her career, which at that time had reached the 40-year mark.
“I don’t think I could have worked any place other than the city and experienced the sense of accomplishment and depth of frustration and then seeing something that benefits your community so much,” she said. “I just don’t know any place you could work and have the diversity. The people are what make an organization successful, and our city so successful. We’ve had so many smart people here who have had a vision of what we could be, and engineers and planners who could make things happen.”
Days after her death, Mayor George Flaggs Jr. announced the flags within the city would be lowered to half-staff and declared Sept. 18, 2019, as “Mrs. Martha Sue Roberts Day” in Vicksburg. He also declared at the time that the program at the Vicksburg Senior Center would be named in her honor.
Now, Flaggs is planning to live up to that promise and to do it one better. During an event planned for March 19, Flaggs, along with South Ward Alderman Alex Monsour, for whom Roberts worked, and North Ward Alderman Michael Mayfield will lead a re-dedication ceremony renaming the city’s Vicksburg Senior Center the City of Vicksburg Sue Roberts Senior Center.
“The senior center always held a special place in the heart of Sue Roberts,” a posting by the city announcing the event said. “Therefore, the Mayor and Board of Aldermen decided that it would be a fitting memorial to dedicate the Senior Center in honor of Miss Sue.”
Roberts’ career, which began in 1977 in the planning department, spanned more than four decades and the administrations of five mayors and four South Ward aldermen.
“I am not even in the same class,” Roberts said when comparing herself to today’s employees. “They are so smart and so dedicated. As I said, we are all a family and for many of us, this is not a job anymore. When you truly love what you do, it is no longer a job.”
The ceremony will be held at the Senior Center, located at 801 South St., at 2 p.m. Those attending will be required to wear a mask and follow social distancing measures.