Suzan Treadwell Kenworthy

Kenworthy—Suzan Treadwell Kenworthy, 83, on September 6, 2021, at Park Springs retirement community near Atlanta, Ga. Suzan was born on June 26, 1938, to Dorothy Cooper and Ralph Treadwell in Suffern, N.Y. She grew up in Pasadena, Calif., where she attended Jackie Robinson High School. Suzan graduated from the University of California, Berkeley.

Suzan met her husband of 58 years, Tom Kenworthy, in 1960, at an American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) workcamp in Mexico. They married in 1962 and lived in Vancouver, Toronto, and New York City before settling permanently in Atlanta in 1967.

Suzan became a member of Atlanta Meeting in 1967. She served as clerk of the meeting from 1974 to 1977, taught First-day school, and was on the Ministry and Worship Committee as well as other committees. When she offered her spiritual journey, Suzan spoke of coming to Quakers through work with AFSC during summers in college. She also spoke of her struggles to settle in silent meetings. She was a member of multiple boards, including Friends School of Atlanta. Friends remember how she gave the gift of being present and attentive. She learned calligraphy and frequently prepared invitations and thank-you cards for Friends and for the meeting.

Suzan had an infectious smile and a gentle, good-natured manner. She was beloved by nearly everyone she knew, from family, friends, and neighbors to members of her assorted lunch groups (a neighborhood gardening group, a Quaker women’s group, a group of parents and teachers from Hawthorne Elementary School, and more) to nurses at the retirement home where she spent her last two years.

Suzan was diagnosed with four life-threatening illnesses—lupus in 1985, breast cancer in 1991, ovarian/uterine cancer (stage 4) in 2003, and breast cancer again in 2013—and beat each one.

Suzan was a consummate sports mom, driving her four children to thousands of soccer, swimming, basketball, and football events, along with girl scouts, piano lessons, referee classes, and much more. She was also an active civic volunteer. She participated in school parent–teacher associations, taught ESL classes to immigrants, tutored remedial students in computer skills at a neighborhood elementary school, and was a member of the nationally renowned Dynamo Swim Club.

Suzan was extremely handy around the house. She built bookshelves, cabinets, beds, a doll house, swim meet starting blocks, and a rabbit cage. She also reupholstered sofas and chairs, stripped and stained tables, installed flooring, painted and wallpapered rooms, installed ceiling fans, and made and mended clothes.

In the 1980s, Suzan joined her husband, Tom, running School Media Associates. She eventually became the company’s full-time operations manager. Suzan managed the company’s move from paper to computers, an important transition as the company modernized its operations to accommodate an increasingly nationwide customer base.

Late in adulthood, Suzan learned to play piano. She took lessons for several years and became quite adept. For a decade or so, Suzan and Tom hosted annual Christmas parties and recitals at their home, with Suzan showing off her steadily improving piano skills.

Suzan was preceded in death by her husband, Tom Kenworthy, in 2020; a brother, Tommy Treadwell; and one grandchild. She is survived by four children, Lane Kenworthy (Kim), Randy Kenworthy (Ellie), Owen Kenworthy (Marti), and Lauren Jarrell (Jonathan); and ten grandchildren.

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