Champion Dog-Sled Racer Susan Butcher
Date of birth: December 26, 1954
Date of death: August 5, 2006
Against great odds she became the most famous dog musher in the world.
Susan was the first person, male or female, to win three consecutive Iditarod championships. She held four first place finishes in only five years, and in all she finished twelve Iditarods in the top five.
When I first arrived in Alaska Susan was at the top of her game, and she radiated vitality. A supreme sportswoman for whom quitting was not an option and the care of her dogs was the first priority, I have admired her for many years.
When she retired from mushing to stay home with her husband and dogs, and eventually two daughters, she remained a prescence in Alaska. Her passing is difficult to accept, her spirit burned so brightly.
Thank you Susan, for everything you gave to your fellow Alaskans, bless your family and close friends. You will be long remembered.