Life from the Beginning

Henry and Sue [Lorenzi] Sojourner sit next to each other in front of the Trevi Fountain. They are looking at one another smiling. Henry is wearing a plaid button-down shirt, dark pants, and sneakers and has his hands clasped between his knees. Sue is wearing a print blouse and dark corduroy pants with sandals. To the left of Henry are two women in dresses looking off-camera. To the right of Sue is a woman in sunglasses with a fringed purse and gladiator sandals.

Black and white photo of Susan and Henry [Lorenzi] Sojourner at Trevi Fountain in Rome, July 1970.

She was born as Susan Sadoff to Bess & Benard. Her family has origins from Lithuania, Russia, and Pinsk, Belorussia. Along with her sister Muriel and brother Bud, the family moved frequently as she grew up. She met her husband, Henry Lorenzi, while working in California and the two married in 1964 before moving to Holmes County, Mississippi, where the pair worked with the local Black communiy in their struggle for voting rights and equality. Later, while living in DC, Sue and Henry changed their last name from Lorenzi to Sojourner, inspired by Sojourner Truth, and welcomed their son, Aaron. As an adult, she struggled with mental health issues which she addressed openly in her personal and creative writing.  

In September of 2007, Sue described herself as "a white Jewish woman who was raised in the upper middle class in 1940s and 1950s Chicago, Salt Lake, Maine, and Massachusetts". She traveled extensively, visiting locales in Central America, North Africa, and Europe. Her most notable locations of residency were Pittsburgh, PN, Washington DC, Oregon, and Duluth, MN. She eventually settled in Minneapolis in 2015, where she lived until her death in 2020.

One of Sue's chosen names for this collection, Hasalo, came from the combination of names that she held dear in life: Harris from her mother's maiden name, Sadoff from her father, and Lorenzi from the last name she shared with Henry.  

Life from the Beginning