Susan Larned Tweed
January 18, 1974 – May 4, 2021
Susie was a camper from 1985-87 and 1989-90, a Leadership in 1991, and then served as a counselor and program director between 1992-98. She was a loyal volunteer and supporter, especially spending many Memorial Day Work Weekends with her mother Polly preparing to welcome campers back for the summer. Susie’s passion for Clearwater is continued in her daughter, Sara who was a camper for many years and a Leadership this past summer giving a toast at the final banquet. Susie’s love for Clearwater was evident in so many ways, including the children’s book she wrote based upon one of her harrowing sailing experiences at camp! Susie went to the University of Michigan and was an elementary school teacher at Cranbrook School in Michigan for nearly 20 years after starting her career at Lake Forest Country Day in Illinois. Earning her Masters of Education at Oakland University was a testament to her dedication to helping her students optimize their potential.
Susie’s full obituary can be found at: https://www.tributearchive.com/obituaries/21024869/Susan-Larned-Tweed
A note from Susie’s camp friend, Michaela Murphy
2021 brought new, heartbreaking challenges. Having gotten the call in fall of 2020 that my Clearwater sister, Susie Larned Tweed (aka Slarned) was suffering from glioblastoma, I was doing what I could to try to stay connected to her. My eternal thanks to all the Clearwater daughters who answered the call to create a series of video tributes to Susie (and especially to Stephanie Kilger-Karger, who so wisely said that we should all create jingles for her!).
Shortly after I sent Susie the links to those videos, I called to check in, and she said she hadn’t called to say thanks because she knew she couldn’t do it without crying – seeing all her old camp friends meant SO much to her. During that call, I also told her about all the Clearwater Daughters who weren’t able to make a video, but sent their love.
Through Susie’s mom, I went back and forth all winter and spring to see if her oncologist would give me the go-ahead to come visit. He kept saying no out of concerns that if I accidentally brought COVID, that would just make things that much worse. When the CDC finally gave their okay for airplane flights for vaccinated travelers, though, I said I had to be there, and made plans immediately. I booked my flight for later that month, and gathered all kinds of camp gear to bring with me – old photo albums, the song book, Clearwater recipes – so we could sit and remember together.
While I did get the chance to sing Clearwater songs and share memories with Susie, I’m afraid she wasn’t able to respond in kind. The morning I left to visit her, she took a fall and hit her head. I sat by her hospital bed all the next day, singing songs and holding her hand. The day after that, her family made the very hard decision to bring her home and let nature take its toll.
I reached out to so many of you during those days, and asked you all to spread the word, and I’m so grateful that you did. Every message that came in from a Clearwater friend was read aloud to her; every wish for love and support and strength helped me carry through and, I think, helped her as well. As I roamed through her house and found echoes of Clearwater in every room, I was so grateful for all of you helping me through Susie’s final days.
Susie passed away on May 4, 2021, with many family and friends nearby. As we talked through plans for how to memorialize her, Clearwater was part of every conversation. Susie’s spirit will live on in that special place, and in all of you, for generations to come, and for that I will always be grateful. Thanks to all of you for your strength and support.
Those Who Have Taken Their Last Portage: Clearwater Camp works to remember and honor those alumnae who have passed away. We learn about alumnae through the Clearwater network of family and friends, who may let us know or make gifts in their memories. For these tributes, we use materials including their published obituaries and other remembrances from family and friends. Please contact Clearwater if there is an alumna you would like remembered by the camp community.