|Honored by:||Thomas & Zora Zimmerman|
|Brick location:||K:23 map|
A reading at the funeral of Suzanne Schlunz by Kathy Schlunz Rice June 2012:
(after the people shared, I added this to my original talk)
Suzie knows of our love (imperfect as it is), and now knows perfect love.
Thank you for confirming and deepening our memories of Suzie.
Lisa mentioned the mural from Sleeping Beauty. Mom painted it on the wall next to Suzie’s bed. It had a pathway through the woods, a castle, a cottage and animals! When Suzie laid there and looked at it, she said it was peaceful to her.
My precious sister was born in Oskaloosa, Iowa, where Dad was a high school teacher and coached basketball. Dad’s whole high school basketball team showed up at the hospital to see her! At the school pep rally there hung a giant banner welcoming her into the world.
Suzanne was named after Mom’s very dear childhood friend. Mom describes Dad as having been “goofy…silly about her.” He sang a tender, personalized rendition of a lullaby to her every night.
“She had people thrilled about her from the very start of her life.”
One day, when she was about 2 or 3? her love for nature became evident. She brought a worm into the house. “Where did you find that worm?” Mom asked. “Suddent-ly, I heard a crawl-crawl and there it was!”
Her answer was written down in the family’s “Funny Sayings” book.
She also had to teach her little sister just how things were in the natural world. A little perturbed after a multitude of my inquiries, she conclusively told me,
“God made the fly and that’s that!”
That quote also resides in the “Funny Sayings” book.
Suzie and I were close. Every Christmas Eve I would crawl into her bed and we’d snuggle together trying to stay awake to hear Santa. We never heard him, but he always gloriously came! In the morning we’d wait at the top of the stairs while Dad would “look to see” if Santa had been there and tell us if it was o.k. to come down! I don’t know if you saw the pictures in the video from some of our Christmases, but Mom made them magical for us!
I adored my sister and looked up to her. I knew, as anyone who knew her knows, she was so smart, vibrant, hard-working, intense yet fun, insatiably inquisitive, helpful, graceful, knowledgeable, a fierce ally, and supremely talented in every way.
Always interested in people, she would ask probing questions that got to the heart of the matter. She would ask my husband questions about his work that made me realize that I should have been taking a little more interest in what he did!
She was engaging in her conversations. Chris, Suzanne’s sister-in-law, says that they shared long beautiful talks over the phone. “She had deep, deep thoughts.” Chris adds to the description of her as being encouraging, sweet and generous, strong and tough, and in dealing with her illness - courageous in her vulnerability.”
We all loved listening to her speak Espanol. I was proud of her ability to communicate so fluently in another language – it was captivating. Her love for the Hispanic culture, art and history was a huge part of her life.
She was active in theatre, staring in plays in high school and beyond. She was a movie buff and working in the entertainment business took her to NYC where her career blossomed.
When she lived in NYC, Bob remembers looking so forward to whenever she’d come home to visit. She added a great deal of liveliness and pizzazz to our gatherings. Jim says, “Inside her, she really loved her family. She thought of the family and always remembered our birthdays.” Chris adds that Suzanne loved giving gifts and loved to watch you open your gift to see your surprise at what she’d given you.”
She loved her friends. Friends were her family. It is difficult to describe just how tight a bond with and all encompassing her love for her friends was. I wish I could do justice to letting them know how much her world was intertwined with theirs. Thank you for those of her dear friends who are here today.
Along with her friends as family, there were her cats - her greatest companions.
One of my favorite things to do with Suz was to visit art museums. Once in Washington, D.C., four of us went to a special Gauguin exhibit. He was one of her favorite artists. Two, Larry and Wendy our daughter, went through in 45 minutes, but we regretfully came out after 3 hours of aesthetic soul-searching and hilarious commentaries.
She was beautiful. I think of her soft skin and beautiful hands that lovingly touched me - that played the piano - that played the guitar. She had a great sensitivity to and love for music. We’ve tried to honor her in that way by having these wonderful musicians here today. Thank you. It means so much to us.
I’d like to read a few e-mails that we received about Suzanne in her most recent times:
I met Susanna in the St.Pius chapel where her love for Jesus was very apparent. I drove her to mass a few times and helped her realize her wish of receiving the Eucharist before she passed. I am so grateful that she is now resting in the arms of her Savior. As she often said to many others.. "God bless you!"
Posted By: Gayle Schreck - on June 18, 2012
I met Suzanne in the last month of her life and although I only met her twice, I will remember her always.
Posted By: Eileen Boggess - on June 18, 2012
I was able to help Suzanne on numerous occasions in the past few months and got to know her pretty well. Though her life became very difficult for her in these last few weeks, she kept her eyes and heart focused on the prize. I am so happy for her that she is now freed from her infirmities and is finally with her Lord and Savior.
Posted By: Reverend Mr. Rick Condon, St. Pius 10th Church, Ur - on June 18, 2012
(added in response to Pastor George & Minister Marji Shade saying that Suzanne was a person without prejudice)
She was a person without prejudice and we learned that from our Dad. Thank you, Dad.
Just a note to say we came to know this lady as a child of God, confessing Christ as Lord and Saviour in the last few months of her life. We came to love her in her most difficult time. She was know simply as "Sister Suzanne" However, from our many conversations with her, her brilliance and love for music and love for God was made manifest. We send our love to her family,
Amazing Grace Ministries & Outreach Church Family & Friends. Des Moines, Iowa
Posted By: Pastor George & Minister Marji Shade - on June 16, 2012
Submitted on 8/8/12