From the Mayor’s Office – Suzy !

From the Mayor’s Office
April 3, 2024 

Suzanne Hull Bradner Stage
January 24, 2024 
Suzy !

Sometimes in life you meet someone who may be described as luminous. It is a rare person and that luminosity, that glow, I believe is a purity of spirit. Suzy Stage embodied that. 

Although born in Ridgewood NJ her home was truly the Warwick Valley. Suzy was a graduate of the Yale Drama School and began a career in Theatre. She performed in groundbreaking plays including the premier of Archibald McLeish’s “JB” which received global acclaim through its performance at the Brussels World Fair. Truly a trajectory of a career and in the complexity of life, decisions are made, weighed and paths change. In Suzy’s case it was a decision to have a family and dedicate herself to that end. When she married John Bradner the adventure began. Motherhood was like breathing for Suzy. She and John raised four remarkable and talented children: Melissa, Michael, Andrew and Patrick. 

 I grew up knowing the Bradner clan, their cousins and extended family and I first knew Suzy as a mom. In those days there was a loose rein in growing up in Warwick. For a child it was a playground of fields, woods and streams. The Bradner household was magical with a creative mom and musical dad, it was a perfect nurturing environment. Slowly but surely, we grow up, we leave, we return, we leave again. Childhood experiences shape us and guide us – a house filled with music gave way to sons who are musicians and creative spirits, Michael, Andrew and Patrick all share that deep love and a family steeped in the practice of medicine was sure guidance that would lead Melissa to become a doctor.  

 As an adult and returning to Warwick my friendship with Suzy grew and with a deeper understanding and the qualities that made her unique. She worked at my store for many years and brought with her grace and humor. When you work next to someone you create a bond, a camaraderie and I have fond memories of those early days when our store was just beginning. I found out quickly that she was a hard worker and that she found the joy of accomplishment in work well done. Suzy’s openness, her sense of fairness and her inquisitive nature were part of her beauty. She was never one to sit on the sidelines for something she believed in. She was engaged and active in our community and it was her consistency and strength that showed us her depth.  

When I decided to run for Mayor, Suzy was part of the team that worked so hard to get me elected. That was a heady and positive time, and I was grateful to have her support and friendship. I will never forget the celebration party after the election at her beautiful home that she had created with John Stage. Maybe even more meaningful as it was a cottage designed by Clinton Wheeler Wisner, Village Mayor from the early 1900’s who has been my muse.  My deep love and respect for Suzy is from a lifetime of knowing her, working together and loving the place we live.  

The cycle of love runs deep and the tight bonds of family weave through our hearts. Suzy moved to Richmond, Va. To be close to her daughter, sons and grandson. It was a move of independence and clarity as to where she needed to be. Suzy is in my heart, and I share that with so many who knew her and loved her. She remains for me a beautiful soul, a consummate amalgam of motherhood, sisterhood and beloved friend.