In Memorium

Suzanne L. Bowyer, M.D.


1954 - May 4, 2012



Suzanne L. Bowyer M.D, passed away early Friday morning on May 4, 2012. She fought a brave fight against the ovarian cancer that finally claimed her life. Originally diagnosed in 2000 she underwent nearly 30 painful chemo treatments that kept her with us over 12 years. She continued to work though all of this until the last few months of her life. She very much loved her work as a Pediatric Rheumatologist for Riley Hospital both locally and internationally as well as singing for the choir every Sunday at Saint Francis Church in Zionsville, Indiana. She leaves behind a very loving family and a multitude of friends. She will be sorely missed.

This site is intended for people to submit personal memories, anecdotes, and important impressions that Sue may have left with you. She loved her patients, friends, colleagues, and family and we wanted everyone to be given the opportunity to contribute and share their thoughts and prayers. We look forward to reading everyone's memories of Sue whether they be serious or humorous.


Obituary as printed in the Indianapolis Star 5/6/2012:

Suzanne Louise Bowyer, M.D.

Dr. Suzanne Bowyer of Zionsville, Indiana, passed away on May 4, 2012. She died peacefully surrounded by her family. She was a beloved wife and mother, a caring sister and a generous friend. Her smile, her teaching and her healing heart will be missed.  She felt that it was a privilege to serve and was reciprocally loved and admired by those she served.

Suzanne was born in Toledo, Ohio, to William and Angeline Bowyer, the first of four children.  She attended DeVilbiss High School and Ohio State University before receiving her medical degree at the University of Michigan. She completed her pediatric residency at the University of Michigan, and a pediatric rheumatology and immunology fellowship at the National Jewish Center for Immunology and Respiratory Medicine and the University of Colorado School of Medicine. She launched her academic career as a pediatric rheumatologist at the University of Michigan, University of Colorado and Los Angeles Children’s Hospital.  However, the bulk of her career was spent at Riley Hospital for Children at the Indiana University School of Medicine, as a professor of pediatrics, as director of pediatric residency training and as director of the section of pediatric rheumatology and pediatric rheumatology fellowship.

Dr. Bowyer was an internationally-recognized leader in the field of pediatric rheumatology.  She was a founding member of the Childhood Arthritis and Rheumatology Research Alliance and an active participant in the Pediatric Rheumatology Collaborative Study Group.  The Distinguished Service Award from the American College of Rheumatology was awarded to her.  She served on the American Board of Pediatrics’ sub-board of pediatric rheumatology and she has received teaching awards from the University of Michigan, L.A. Children’s Hospital and the Indiana University Board of Trustees. Dr. Bowyer’s most recent awards included the IU Morris Green Faculty Teaching Award, the James T. Cassidy Award from the American Academy of Pediatrics Section on Rheumatology, the Humanitarian Award from the Indiana Chapter of the Arthritis Foundation, the Earl Brewer Award for Physician Leadership from the Arthritis Foundation and the Deborah Kredich Award from the American College of Rheumatology.

Sue was an active parishioner of St Francis of the Fields Episcopal Church, serving as a member of the choir and as a chalice bearer.  Sue is survived by her husband, Phil Roettcher, and two children, Donita and Jacques, her brother, Brian Bowyer, and her sister, Maryanne Bowyer-Cherry. Sue will be interred in the Columbarium following the memorial ceremony at St Francis of the Fields, Zionsville, Indiana on May 12, 2012 at 2 pm in a private service for family and close friends.  A memorial service celebrating Sue’s service to her patients and the Indiana University Department of Pediatrics will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to the Riley Children's Foundation (https://app.etapestry.com/hosted/RileyChildren/OnlineGiving.html or https://www.rileykids.org ), including information in the memorial section earmarked to the "Bowyer Fund".

A web blog is being created for those wishing to contribute their memories, anecdotes, wishes and prayers at the following location http://tinyurl.com/sbowyer Thank you to all.


Services for family and close friends:

Sue will be interred in the Columbarium after the memorial service at St. Francis of the Fields in Zionsville on May 12th, 2012 at 2pm.  http://mapq.st/JAYNDs


Services for friends and colleagues at Indiana University

A Memorial Service for Sue will be held at Indiana University Riley Hospital for Children, on Tuesday, June 5th, 2012 4:00 - 5:30 pm in the ROC Auditorium for friends, colleagues, and patients. 


Thank you from family

The outpouring of love and affection shown for Sue and us, her family, has been absolutely astounding and breathtaking. Sue was a wonderful wife and mother and we loved her very much. She obviously touched many people with her warmth, kindness and generosity. Thank you very, very much for all the prayers, wishes, hugs, good thoughts, toasts, and kindness you have shown over these many years and during this difficult recent period. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!!



Suzanne Bowyer Receives American College of Rheumatology Distinguished Service Award


 Arthritis Walk For Sue

June 1, 2012, 7pm

2012 Indianapolis Walk Map

Indiana State Fairgrounds Parking and Course



Dr. Sue Bowyer was an advocate for children with arthritis. Let's honor her memory for all the tireless work she did on their behalf and their families.

Join the Riley pedi-rheum team and walk with the doctors and nurses who try to continue the same level of dedication and care Dr. Bowyer gave all of her kids.

Click on the link below to sign up.

Follow This Link to visit my personal web page and help me in my efforts to support Arthritis Foundation, Heartland Region-Indiana

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Peter Chira, M.D. Pediatric Rheumatology