“My heart goes out to the 20,000 plus students whose lives were touched by Aileen ‘Sunny’ Sundstrom,” Christine Stover, communication adjunct faculty member, said in a tribute to Sundstrom on the department’s website. “She was an amazing woman, a brilliant person, a role model and one of the most wonderful people I have ever had a privilege to work with. Words can’t express how wonderful she was, and how much she will be missed.”
Sundstrom, who was 87 years old, began her career at OU in 1996 after retiring from her position as chairperson of the Performing Arts Department at Henry Ford Community College.
“I think it is striking that Aileen came to us in her retirement,” Valerie Palmer-Mehta, associate professor of commnication, said. “She worked for us part-time, but she had a profound influence on our students.”
Sundstrom was one of the first women to earn a doctorate from Wayne State University, according to the communication department website.
Visitation for Sundstrom will take place Feb. 5 from 3 to 7 p.m. at the Rupp Funeral Home, where funeral services will also be held Feb. 6 at 11 a.m., according to www.monroenews.com
Burial services will be held at the Roselawn Memorial Park in LaSalle, Mich.
There will be an on-campus tribute for Sundstrom Feb. 11 from noon to 1:30 p.m. in Gold Room B of the Oakland Center.
Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to say a few words in honor of the former professor.
“Aileen was just a bright light in our (communication) department,” Palmer-Mehta said. “She was always so jovial, giving of her time and energy and just a lovely spirit to be around. She always put the students first and wanted them to be in the spotlight. They loved her.”