Walter Mead
here now exists a hole in my soul. A void where a love used to be. We could sit and talk for hours over what the important things in life are and how deeply we were affected by our parents. Their faults and foibles, our dislikes and hates, yet more and more we saw together how we emulated what they taught and did to us Both the good and the bad and how more and more we became like them. I miss those talks and words of encouragement that were always there from her for me. Sue was a person to be counted on and steadfast. May I only continue in her footsteps.

He drew a circle that shut her out.
Heratic, Rebel, a thing to flout.
But love and Sue had the wit to win,
They drew a circle that took him in.

Patty Verlashkin
ue and I go way back, almost as far back as it's possible to go. She and I met when we were six, and became best friends, as did our mothers. I remember our childhood in Pittsburgh, and my time spent with her family, and I remember the excruciating agonies of being a teen-ager together. I remember how we both loved to read, and how we also loved to aggravate Sue's Dad, and I remember sitting on her porch on Reynolds St., trying to figure out boys and life, usually in that order. And then, after Sue left Pittsburgh, I especially remember Alex's birth, and how happy she was -- and how happy I was for her. Years later, I also remember being married at the Quaker Meeting House, to which her family contributed so much -- not because my husband-to-be and I were Quakers, which we weren't, but because her family was in many ways my own family. And I'll definitely remember her stories from Buffalo, and hearing about the people there for whom she cared so much. I'll miss you, Sue, and I'll miss your goodness. The world is a far poorer place without you.

Love, Pat
Art Ashton
ix decades ago two families shared an aging home in Pittsburgh, the Meads had the second floor and the Ashtons the first. There were five Mead children and Susan was one of them and there were four Ashton children and this writer is one of them. The children lived in the third floor of this house. It was a wonderful place steeped in the high values of the Mead's quaker beliefs and filled with love, caring for others, a pride in being somewhat frugal and a sense of rejection of materialism. Susan's mother, Aunt Gerty , a nurse was dedicated to helping others. I see that Susan carried on the helping tradition in her life. Her father uncle Willie, a teacher who smoked a pipe and spent many an evening in an overstuffed chair surrounded by kids chairs while his deep voice narrated and brought to life childrens books. I see Susan loved to read and held children in a very special place in her heart. The perspective that I can add here is that as Susan's parents live on in the people that they touched, Susaan lives on in the people she touched and I am certain her son and friends will continue that very strong value system.

Martin Santiago
ear Alex,

    I wanted you to know I first met your Mother shortly after she became a VISTA volunteer in Buffalo, NY. I can only tell you she was an amazing woman who everyone enjoyed working with and being around both at work and off. She is a tribute to what a VISTA volunteer should be.

    She was such a fireball that we all soon were drawn up in the spirit of her strong work ethics. She soon requested our attention to the problems of the under classes an we immediately became involved in assisting her in her efforts to help others. We could not keep up with her energy and long work hours, almost 7 days a week. I can only tell you it was a great privilege and an honor to have known her and it caused such great sorrow to know she is no longer with us.
Jim Finamore
ear Alex,

    Not only did I work with your mother for years in the CETA and JTPA program. She was one of the first people I met when I arrived in Buffalo in 1973. I was out of work and didn't know anyone in the area. Sue advised me on how to dress for a job interview ("Don't keep wearing that same suit!") and about who might be hiring.

    In all the years I worked with her, I never heard Sue utter a word in anger. She was more understanding of the needs of our clients than almost anyone else.

    She was smart, had a big heart, and did a great job helping people in need. She will be sadly missed by the thousands of people she touched over the years.

Jim Finamore, Executive Director
Buffalo and Erie County Workforce Investment Board, Inc.

Dana Williams Braxton

ue was like that cool Aunt that spoiled you when your mother wouldn't. I loved her so much. Sue knew me before I knew me. When I think of her my mind is flooded with so many memories. Lot's of little things like the sound of her voice when she said my name. Her laughther. The way I felt when she told me she loved me. How sad I was when you guys moved the way. How glad I was when I visited you guys at your new house. Memories of riding in her nova :). The smell of the bread she would buy(Sue always bought healthy wheat bread. Granny always bought Wonder Bread or Sunbeam). Drinking out of those metal cups. Until this day if I see a metal up it reminds me you and Sue. I remember talking to her when the twins were born and she gave me some great advice. Sue gave me my first tea set. And my first little brother. She brought so much fun and happiness to my world. And she is truly missed.

Rachel Baksa

ear Sue,

      I wanted to find a way to say goodbye to you, and this way seemed very appropriate. You meant more to me than I could ever tell you. The stories you would tell me about Mom, my childhood, the advice you gave about my about my own family, every memory I have of you is filled with happiness. You never let me see anything bad or any hurt in your life. I will remember you always and think of you often. I hope and pray that you are with Mom and she will be the one to take care of you now.

I love you,

Jerry Masterson
oo many memories to mention. every single one containing an act of unconditional love which I always had a hard time grasping. The one that will forever be burned to my memory is from June of 2001. i asked sue why she was always helping me even though sometimes it felt like i didn't deserve help? her response was swift and took me off guard. "Because you're like family and I love you."

    Whether I'll ever fully understand unconditional love is unknown. I'll try to pass whatever i do understand on as Sue did with me.

    This is an adaptation of the poem "somebody cares" by Helen Steiner Rice.
somebody cares and always will,
the world forgets but Sue loves you still,
you cannot go beyond her love
no matter what your guilty of-
for Sue forgave until the end,
she was my faithful, loyal friend,
and though i try to hide my face
there is no shelter any place
that can escape her watchful eye,
for on earth and in the sky
she's ever present and always there
to take you in her tender care
and bind the wounds and mend the breaks
when all the world around forsakes...
somebody cares and loves you still
and Sue is the someone who always will.

Kathy Sorrentino
o me, Sue was a friend, mentor, counselor, a hero and a saint that walked the earth for a short time. I find it hard not to pick up the phone and ask her advice. There is void in my life as well as everyone else's. My life is better for knowing her. She so admired nurses because of her mother who nursed people in her days. This woman shaped the lives of so many including the leaders of today's society.

    My first encounter with sue was intimidating, as she scolded me for not doing pell on the PIC students. We eventually grew into a relationship of respect for each other and a mutual ideas. She was always very creative when helping the program grow. She had great insight into people when interviewing. I know the world will be a better place for her being and i have no doubt she is with her maker in a better place.

Bryan Gawron
o many years ago I met Ms. Mead when I first went over to Alex's house. I remember her as being a funny and witty woman. She had alot to say and stories to tell. I was always happy to hear them and the advice she had to offer. There were a few times she gave me really good advice and things to do and try with my life. I respect her for her help and talents for helping other people. She will be missed by me, but always remembered in my life.

Mike Cascio
ue Mead was one of the most intelligent and sweetest people I've ever met. One of the things I remember most is how she would always encourage me to better myself. Whenever I chatted with her, whether on the phone or in person, she'd ask me how I was doing, what my plans for the next five years were, and whether I was taking any college classes. It was like having another parent! She had a genuine interest in and concern for my future that touched me.

ue was not only a great friend to me and a lovely woman just to sit and talk to, but she has done alot for my family and will always be rembered by me and my daughter as family, as a grandmother that I never knew as my own... Although my daughter is very young and does not have the pleasure of personally knowing Sue but I will make sure not only does Sue's name reamin in her but the legend and all the good memories I have as knowing her will be passed upon her .. Sue was a great lady with a heart the size of the sun, as golden as a piece of 22k gold, and as precious as a rose...We will all miss her very much but never forget the woman she was and still is..She is in a safer more blissful world and can live on with whom she was and will always will be..God bless Sue with all the hearts in this world and many more to come...May she rest in peace..

Leah Herby
will always treasure Sue and her memory for the love she gave each of my grandchildren, usually when they needed it most! She was a loving woman with a heart of gold and we will all miss her. May she enjoy her new home of peace.


ue was always a very kind and generous soul. She was always there for me whenever I needed a friend. When everyone else didn't want to be bothered, I knew I could turn to her. That was very important to me. I felt better about myself, my life and my mistakes because Sue always encouraged me. She wouldn't let me think badly of myself or most of my choices in life. Though, after all, she was Sue and she did voice her opinion about a few things.

    I remember, I used to come over every so often to clean house... not that she needed me to because she had someone to do that. She knew I was having a tough time with money so she would extend a helping hand and I would clean the house for her. She would always try to help us with what was most needed... she sent Alex grocery shopping once... She didnt like to see my kids go with out.... Me either... she would try to help me out too.

    Sue did all she could for us and I didnt get the chance to thank her like I wanted to. I wish I would have been there... I never got to tell her that I loved her and she deserved to know that...

Joanne Colmerauer
met Sue when I started at PIC in 1996. I always felt Sue was a great person to have known. She knew this business very well and was an inspiration in the way she would fight for her clients. She truly believed in people and their potential. She was headstrong sometimes, and always made it clear that the client was her first priority. She taught me a lot and again, I am glad I had the chance to know her.

Kim Scrogg
ear Alex,

    Hi! How are you? Sorry it took so long to write but it seems like I am busy all the time.

    I loved your mother very much. She was a pleasure to work for. Even though she was so sick she tried to make everybody happy, all the time. I found her to be an incredible woman. Always giving unselfishly. I liked listening to her tell of her life, it was a life full of experiences that made her a stronger person. She liked helping people no matter how big or small the help was, it was always from the heart.

    Sue loved talking about all her family from her parents to her siblings but most of all she loved talking about you. You were her world. She beamed when she would tell me about you growing up.

    Her love of children was amazing. I think kids made her feel young. Valerie was her favorite of my girls. She said she reminded her of herself growing up. I know she enjoyed me bringing them over. I enjoyed it also. I was glad I could bring all the kids to see her. The only kid she didn't see out of my grandchildren was Nevine, in a way it was okay because he is a spunky handful. I wouldn't have been able to get any work done if I did.

    I believe your mother had a full, rich life and life is what you make of it. I'm sorry she is gone, but she will always be in my heart. I am glad I was able to take care of her. She brightened my life. From all the people at the service I see how much she touched their lives also.

    Your mom was a special lady. I'm sorry I didn't have more time to take care of her. I never tired of her stories even if she told me the same story a couple times, they were fascinating. Even though she had a short life I think it was a full life. She touched a lot of people's lives and I'm sure they are richer from her time, patience, and understanding.

    It has been a pleasure knowing you and your mom. Like I said if there is anything I can do, don't hesitate to call.

Sincerely your friend,
Kim Scrogg

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In Loving Memory of Susan F. Mead (January 3, 1944 to August 19, 2001)