Sue Ellen Wills Betts
1952 - 2020
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Sue Ellen Wills Betts, age 68, passed away peacefully on August 13, 2020 at Penrose Hospital Hospice in Colorado Springs, CO from complications with COPD.

Sue was born to Jennie (Kern) Wills and William J. Wills on Feb. 19, 1952 in Pueblo, CO.

She graduated from South High School in Pueblo and later moved to Pagosa Springs, where she started her career in law enforcement. Leaving Pagosa, she moved to Cortez in 1983 joining the City of Cortez Police Department where she was an officer for the next 29 years; 21 of those years she was a supervisor, until she retired as a Sergeant in 2012.

Sue loved the people and her city. She recently was elected to a second term as a City Council member, and she was also a board member of the Historic Preservation and Mesa Verde Country. She never gave up trying to serve the people, and she was always proud of Cortez and being part of the community. She taught CPR to many through the years.

A lot of you remember the DARE Lion that was at graduation, school functions, and in parades. It was Sue under that big head and with those large paws!

Her most cherished love was for her family, friends and animals. Her grandson Ashton Orr and her granddaughter Kadance Orr were her world.

Some remember her by her animals, as she always had a Siamese cat, at least 1 dog, and of course her talking parrots!

Stories are plentiful of how much she helped others, or how she changed their lives. There were young people that she helped turn around, who went on to college and now have great jobs, or when she spoke up to save someone from losing their job. She never tired of trying to help. She said recently if she could change anything it would be to keep others from smoking, or encourage them to stop.

She was a great cook, and was always making someone a special cake; her green chili pork and avocado burritos, and Mexican pizzas were the best. She would always leave you with a smile.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Jennie and William (Bill) Wills and her brother Johnny Wills.

She is survived by her son, Jerry Orr, Cortez, CO; granddaughter, Kadance Orr; grandson, Ashton Orr; brother, Jerry (Vicki) Wills, Pagosa Springs, CO; sister, Shirley Saddoris, Beulah, CO; nephews, Jake (Roxanna) Wills, Hank (Stacey) Wills, Randy (Deb) Wills, and Wade (Margo) Wills; niece, Tabatha (Jim) Hartman; and many others.

At Sue's request, no services will be held.

Until "The Twelfth of Never", we will love and miss you.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in The Journal on Aug. 18, 2020.
Memories & Condolences
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11 entries
August 26, 2020
Sue was always a go-to person in whatever problem you might have. She was an excellent police officer and everyone knew her in that role. Always friendly and smiling. She will be sorely missed by all who knew her.
Maxine Kirk
August 25, 2020
She was like a alternate mom to me when I was little. I spent so much time playing with her son that we were practically brothers. I remember that green chili of hers. Rest well Sue.
Erik Ferland
August 25, 2020
She was a special lady. Our son spent many hours playing with Jerry.
Stephanie Ferland
August 22, 2020
Sue was an amazing woman who always pushed people to be their best. She will be greatly missed.
My families thoughts and prayers go out to you Jerry. Your Mama sure was one of a kind.
Casey Vickers
August 22, 2020
The dearest friend I ever had. I didn't get to see her as much as I should have, but it was a comfort just knowing she was there. I will miss her for the rest of my life.
Janet Bookless
August 21, 2020
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.
Gary Wittwer
August 21, 2020
She will surely be missed. It was a privilege and a pleasure to have Sue respond on calls when I worked as an EMT. She was also a good friend and mentor to myself and many others. Sue was a good ol' egg, as the saying goes. Most of the times I was around this outstanding gal, she had a smile on her face. I will miss you, but will see you again Lord willing. RIP Sergeant Betts!
Helen Cumpton
August 19, 2020
I am proud to have worked at your side, the mark we made as few women in Law Enforcement and successes we shared.
10-42 Sgt. Sue Betts........ Sgt. Barb Grossman
August 19, 2020
Sue, you were always so amazing, and that smile, I will surely miss it. The warmth in your eyes, and the very genuine way you loved your people. You will live on in the hearts of all you touched. You certainly touched me. Rest easy now. Love you.

To her family, May God Hold you all in his Mighty Arms through this difficult time. Deepest Condolences. She is... and will forever be...unforgettable. Much Love.
Kim Lockhart-Beaty
August 19, 2020
I hope its always spring there Mom. See you when I get there. Until then...
Jerry Orr
August 19, 2020
In loving memory of a wonderful person. We will love you and miss you always.
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