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Susan Patricia Bandy

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Susan Patricia Bandy Haslett Age 60, died peacefully in her sleep on Monday, January 26, 2009. We envision her fully engaged in her newest adventure, minus the physical difficulties that held her back in this life. She is survived by her father and stepmother, Elvin Bandy and Irma Shuler, Lansing, MI; brother and sister-in-law, Dane and Fran Bandy, Charlevoix, MI; niece and nephew, Elaine and Mark Bandy, Grand Rapids, MI; aunt, Martha (Bandy) Yoas, Mancelona, MI; uncle and aunt, Harold and Patricia Baum, Arlington, VA; Uncle, Bruce Weaver, DeWitt, MI; uncle and aunt, John and Karin Powers, Palm Desert, CA; and extended family, Jerilyn Davis-Robison, Okemos, MI, Edwyna McKee and Rich Hausler, Haslett, MI, Peter McKee, Cincinnati, OH, Gary, Beth, Devin, Ryan and Alyssa Simon, St. Johns, MI, Susan Campbell, Bruce Watkins and Jeanne Powers, Lansing, MI. She was preceded in death by her mother, Patricia (Baum) Bandy; uncle, Harold Yoas; aunts, Diana (Baum) Powers, Mary (Bandy) Weaver and Jean Baum. She was born in Lansing on March 9, 1948 and graduated from Lansing Everett High School in 1966. She spent two years at Lansing Community College, sharpening her social skills, until Pappy drew the line and made her get a job. She went to work in the State Treasury Department mail room and worked her way up the ladder until her skills exceeded her interest. Moving on to the State Highway Department, she found her niche as a drafting technician, but when all the rest areas, highways and parking lots began to look alike, she transferred to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, where the tasks were more varied. She fit right into the Engineering Division Family, and though she retired from the DNR in 2002, she stayed in touch and, of course, never missed a Division party. After her retirement, she found her passion: soap stone carving. (Actually, her interest in carving began at age 12, when her Aunt Diana gave her a bar of Ivory Soap and a dull knife and said "Here!") Self-taught, she described herself as a "non-award winning soap stone carver", but actually, she quickly became very accomplished. She established her own business, "Rocks in Her Head," but never wanted the business aspect to overshadow the sheer joy she found in the carving itself. She generously gave away many of her beautiful creations to friends and family, and sold her pieces at moderate prices so people could afford to buy them Whether you knew her as Susie, Ant Bee, Susan, Robogal, Ma Mah-jongg, Sue, or simply Bandy, you knew she was a planner (some would say schemer), designer, organizer and genuine free spirit. It was her sincere desire that her friends and family not mourn her death, but celebrate her life. Specifically, she said: "There is to be no funeral. Plan a party to celebrate my LIFE. Party to have finger food, white russians and music by Bette Midler, Judy Garland, and Janis Joplin. Only speakers to be people who know me and they are only to tell happy stories. I've had an extremely good life filled with wonderful family and incomparable friends and have certainly left enough good memories for people to remember those times and not dwell upon my death. " And so, there will be no funeral or formal memorial services. Cremation has taken place, and a private burial service will be held at a later date. The family asks that you remember her at her best. Further, do your mourning and healing by continuing those groups she was so instrumental in getting started: the First Tuesday breakfast at Sam's; the Monday and Weduesday mah-jongg games; the Tinkerbel1s; Team Bandy. Continue to get together to see a movie, celebrate holidays and birthdays, share a meal, talk on the phone, and laugh at all her antics. When enough time has passed to distill the shock and grief to smiles and laughter, putting together the party to celebrate her life will be our first priority. Notification will be sent out later, but the party will likely be in May. All who knew her will be welcome. Those who wish may make a donation in her memory to the Humane Society, 7095 W. Grand River, Lansing MI 48906.

Published in Lansing State Journal on Feb. 3, 2009
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