Suzanne Elizabeth Lawrence-Forsberg was a beauty queen with a passion for helping cancer patients.
Lawrence-Forsberg won the Miss Texas pageant in 1990, using the “Smiles Against Cancer” program as her platform. A cervical cancer survivor, Lawrence-Forsberg worked hard to raise the spirits of people suffering from the disease. Her efforts earned her the Quality of Life Award at the 1991 Miss America Pageant, where she was named third runner-up.
For the past seven years, Lawrence-Forsberg has worked as a broadcast journalist, most recently as a senior anchor on the Channel 9 News in Columbus, Ga. When she was diagnosed with colon cancer three years ago, she returned to Texas and started Climb for the Cure, an organization that raises money to fight the disease by having people climb and hike for donations. She even rallied 20 of her pageant pals into taking part in various events.
“Suzanne will forever be remembered in history because of her dedication and mission to saving lives, affected by cancer. Her life is a testament of pure love and determination. She never gave up. Her perseverance has touched thousands around the world and her commitment has been manifested in the beauty that surrounds the events of Taking A Step. Suzanne’s legacy is a gift to her family and to the world,” Angela Perez Baraquio Grey, Miss America 2001, stated.
Lawrence-Forsberg died on Aug. 23 of colon cancer. She was 34.
September 14, 2003 by
Suzanne Elizabeth Lawrence-Forsberg was a beauty queen with a passion for helping cancer patients.
I am so sorry. I would love to get that message to her mother. I saw the story on the news this morning and have been in shock. She was such a sweet wonderful girl. She stayed in my home a lot while she was training for Miss Texas and I will never forget her. I am so sorry I was not able to say goodbye. I wish so badly that distance and time had not come between us. I will always remember her smile and laugh. Lesson learned keep in touch with those you love!
I was 11 years old when I met Suzanne. I had the wonderful opportunity of being a young pageant girl who was chosen to participate in the production number of the 1988 Miss Texas Pageant. I believe this was the first year that Suzanne competed there. Suzanne was the only contestant who went out of her way to spend time with me backstage and at the banquet that I got to attend. I was a clown on roller skates in the production number and I had these big white plastic gloves/hands that I wore. Suzanne told me they reminded her of the Hamburger Helper character and that became my nickname. I was so dissapointed that she didn’t take home the title of Miss Texas that year. I had told my mom that I just knew she was going to win because she was so beautiful and nice to me. She didn’t even make top 10 that year but I went back next year with my mom to watch and there she was again competiting. I crossed my fingers for her again but still no crown for her. The next year, 1990, I didn’t get to go watch the pageant in person but I watched it from my home via the T.V. I jumped up and down screaming when her name was called as the new Miss Texas. I was not even aware of the personal crisis that she had gone through. The next year she came to my hometown, Paris, Texas, to light the hospice tree at St. Joseph Hospital. I begged my mom to take me so I could see her again and she did. Imagine my surprise when she looked out and saw me and shouted at me and said “look, it’s my little Hamburger Helper girl!” She made my day when she remembered me. I was probably pretty insignificant compared to all the people she had come in contact with but this just goes to show you that with Suzanne, no one was too insignificant for her to give of her love and attention. She was truly a special person. I was so saddened last night when I saw on the Miss Texas Pageant that she had passed away. I just wanted to let you know the impact she had on a little 11 year old girl from Paris, Texas all those years ago.
It is amazing that after this length of time I came across this posting. I have many times wonderered what happened to all the people Suzanne met over the years. She would go on trips and come home so happy that she met someone who lifted her spirits so high.
During 1989 Miss Texas Pageant Suzanne looked tired and weak on stage. After the pageant was over she was so weak, I took her the Dr. who said she had something wrong that the Drs before her had not looked for. Often times the Drs do not look for cancer in a young lady but this Dr had insight and looked for it. Finding it to be minor Suzanne decided to up lift other people who were terminal with cancer. She traveled all over trying to make others happy or as she put it
“To smile for a little”
In July 1990, Suzanne never dreamed she would be crowned Miss Texas, she merely wanted to obtain another year of college. She felt honored to be Miss Texas and even more honored just to be at Miss America. This was never a dream to her as Most young women would like. She entered the Miss Texas for scholarship purpose only.
Suzanne met many many wonderful people that year and years to come.
She continued to volunteer for organizations for cancer, just to go and speak or entertain the patients was so exciting to her. She loved people and never forgot a single one.
She remembered details that most people would forget.
It was her deepest desire to have children and she did. MaKayla born 10/96 and Gareth born 6/98.
She did not want to leave them and fought hard not too.
She also wanted very much to have a program continue….Taking A Step…organized by her to make up money for the fight against colon cancer.
It would be the most wonderful tribute that she could have left behind if I could keep the TAKING A STEP alive and going.
I pray that others will not have to go thru the horrid & painful death my daughter went thru.
I never dreamed that suffering with cancer could be this dreadful.
Thank you all of you for remembering the light she gave to your life.
She gave me light that will never go dim or out.
A sunshine of love, a warmth of herself and most of all, a part of herself in MaKayla & Gareth.
Blessings to all that remembered her.
Mary Ann Lawrence, Suzanne Lawerence Forsberg’s Mom…
I was so sorry to hear of the early passing of Suzanne. She was a shinning star that was as bright as one could be. She loved life and those around her. She was a very special person that I was very lucky to know. I know she made a difference in many peoples lives. A lovely young lady taken too soon.
I am an avid Miss America fan. Recently, I was able to watch several pageant telecasts from the early 90’s. When I first saw Suzanne, I was truly taken by her inner and outer beauty. After watching many pageants, she is one contestant that really stood out. Thus, I started researching more about her to find out she had passed away. I was deeply saddened.
As I was sitting here thinking back over the years, Suzanne crossed my mind. I decided to do a search to see where and what she might be up to these days, this is not what I had hoped to find. I attended High School with Suzanne in Splendora. I can remember playing tennis with her in the rain, attending drama festivals with her. I lost my mother in 1999 to stomach cancer. I would like to extend my sincerest condolences to Suzanne’s parents Mr. & Mrs. Buck Lawrence (He was our chief of police at one time in Splendora), her little sister, and her husband. This is heartbreaking to me. I can remember seeing her at the mall and even though she was surrounded by bodyguards, she still had time to pull away from them and all the admirers to say hello and give an old friend a hug. Suzanne you were a joy to be around and your love for friends, advice for us when we were down, and your motivation that taught us to reach for our dreams and achieve them will never be forgotten. I love you and miss you my friend. Shannon McAdams.
Thank you Shannon.
Sorry to hear about your Mom, Cancer seems to be at rampart these days.
I remember you and those days at Splendora.
You are right, Suzanne loved everyone she came close to and never forgot any. The last year she lived she told me stories about all of her friends and how she had enjoyed life abundately with them.
It is such a wonderful and joyfull feeling inside to read notes about her.
I am putting together a memory album for her two children so they can have memories not only in their hearts but they can look and see.
If any of her friends reads this, please send me comments of your times you had with her.
So sorry to hear of her passing, I remember her from Kingwood when we used to live in trailwood apts. She and my girlfriend at the time Dana were good friends and I was a firend of her boy friend at the Time Art Pickens, Art also has passed away as a result of an accident.
I remember Doug and Dana in Kingwood. I was not aware of Art Pickens and had not heard of the accident and death. To my memory he was taking care of his Mom due to the un timely death of his Father. Time sure tells us all of the uncertain time that the Lord calls us home.
Do not know where Dana is at this time, curious to know and hear from all her friends.
Suzanne remembered all her friends and had remained in contact with most of them. Amazing how she talked about each and every one and her memories were special of each one.
I was not priviledged to know Suzanne, but I was the director of SMILES Against Cancer for 7 years in the Kngwood area until our move to Etoile, Texas last year. I am a cancer survivior since 1996 and I know how important the friendships formed through SMILES have been in my recovery. Now, in Lufkin, I would like to start a support group like SMILES, but do not know how to begin. I know that Suzanne must be in heaven smiling down as she sees her legacy trying to take root again. If anyone has info that would be helpful please send it to me. % p.O. Box 235 Etoile Texas, 75944. I know Szanne’s must be encouraged by all the good she did for survivorers in her short, beautiful life.
Cindy Henderson, Etoile,Texas
Cindy, Thanks for your comment.
Suzanne would love to continue the work. I will see what I can do.
Mrs. Lawrence, Thanks for your expression of condolance on the loss of my mom. You are so right, cancer is a horrible disease and has taken too many lives. I learned today from a friend back home that I have lost a total of 11 friends in the past three years. I am in the process of redoing my office in my home to pay tribute to those special friends that have gone to be with our Lord Jesus Christ. So far I have a photo of all but four of them one of which is Suzanne. I had an autographed Miss Texas photo that was being kept at my sister’s home until I complete my masters in nursing. Low and behold she lost her home to a fire in April of this year. If there is any way that you could help me with this task I would greatly appreciate it. I will be more than happy to pay for having a copy made and for postage. Let me know if you can help. God Bless! Sincerely, Shannon McAdams
Shannon L. McAdams
PO Box 97
Stratton, NE 69043
Shannon I am mailing a photo of her as Miss Texas
She remembered her friends the last year each and every one. She talked of events and times she spent with each one of them.
It was amazing how well she knew each one and remembered the small details of them.
If there is anyone out there, please post your memories of Suzanne. Her children Gareth & MaKayla get a great pleasure in reading about her and her friends …
Love to all
How does one say this. Cancer is taking our loved ones. At least 7 or 8 people with the Miss Texas Organization has also died with cancer.
Each person suffered greatly and the families live with the memories of the suffering.
The difference is I try to live with the memories of the joy and beauty Suzanne was to me and to my family.
I have tapes, music and videos and that is worth more than most people have of their families.
I could say make tapes of your children, photos, videos. Later in life they bring joy listing and watching them especially if you loose one.
But I want to express to everyone that it is but a blink of an eye and we will all be together again forever.
Love to all who have lost the body of a loved one, give your spirit to Heavenly Father and one day you too will be back together again forever.
Mommy I miss you with all my heart, and hope that someday I’ll see you again I’ll never forget you for you were the best and still are. Love you always! Your loving daughter, MaKayla
Hi Mommy I miss you. I am sorry I didn’t see you die, I wanted to be there. It’s Thanksgiving and we put up the Christmas Tree today with Grammy.
Daddy’s gone to movies.
It is not the same without you. MaKayla and I love you and hope you are building a big house for us in Heaven. Hope you are having a good Thanksgiving with Heavenly Father and Jesus.
Say Hello to PaPa and Jessica. From Gareth
And MaKayla said I helped too on this letter.
I met Suzanne Lawrence in 1988, at school..we had a great connection and dreamed of our futures..we both achieved what we set out to do, i always thought of her as a amazing talent and knew she would make a difference in todays world. i was so sadden to see her post and not know sooner of her passing, i feel so fortunate to have known her and enjoyed her sweet personality and talent, she use to sing for me as she practiced for Miss Texas,i would sit there in awe of her gorgeous voice and her humility.I will always remember her as a special voice in a world where people come and go, but the special ones leave an everlasting impression on our lives, so this was our beautiful Suzanne Lawrence..
MaKayla and Gareth,
You Mommy was a very special person and FRIEND to everyone she met. She gave so much of herself to make this world a better place. I pray each day that the two of you will continue to carry out her dreams. Be good kids and give your Grammy a BIG HUG for me. Always in my prayers, Shannon McAdams
To the Lawrence and Forsberg families. I was very sadden to learn that Suzanne had passed away! My sincerest condolences to you all. I have been blessed to be cancer-free since 1992. I have been a Miss America pageant fan since I was a little girl. I will always remember Suzanne. I was truly impressed with her beauty, talent and sincerity as she glowed with such a profound aura that night in Atlantic City. I loved her rendition of Patsy Cline’s song, Crazy! She sang it with such emotion and passion! I was hoping and praying that she would become the next Miss America that night! She is now at peace, but she will always be missed and remembered by those that adored her. Though I didn’t meet her or personally know her, she indeed did touch my heart through the wonders of television. God bless you! Wishing you a wonderful and prosperous New Year! Aloha, Jan
Hi, I am overwhelmed by all the mail and beautiful things everyone is saying. The children Gareth and MaKayla are strong and precious. They do miss their Mom but they do have a great Dad.
Shannon I have not forgotten. I had to dig deep in boxes to get you the photos of Miss America. I have them now in the envelope and mailing them tomorrow.
Bless all of you that remember Suzanne.
I am making a memory CD tape of all the photos and memories of Suzanne for both of the children now and would like to add any remarks that anyone has to say about her to the children.
Your stories of how she impressed your life and the memories of how she was in meeting you and not meeting but still leaving a beautiful part of herself with you.
Love to all and to all a very good New Year.
Ann, Thank you so much for the photos. I couldn’t help but cry, just seeing the face of an angel who touched my life in so many ways was so heart-warming and emotional. I was sitting here this evening and thinking about how Suzanne had such an impact on my life. I used to tell myself…”I’m from Splendora, TX. No one from here ever makes anything out of themselves.” Well thanks to a few words of advice and wisdom from a very special friend, Suzanne, I opened my eyes to realize that if you want something bad enough, nothing can stand in your way. It took me six years to achieve my dream of becoming a RN. Seeing Suzanne climb such a steep mountain with such strength, and reaching the top is amazing. I look at what she achieved and am forced to push myself even harder. Suzanne IS a role model to be remembered by not only young girls of today but even us men in the world. She has taught me to fight for what I believe in and let nothing stand in the way of my dreams. Thank you Suzanne, for being an inspiration to me and showing me that it can be done. I love you my friend and will always hold you close to my heart.
Shannon and to many Suzanne touched their lives.
She believed nothing was impossible to achieve.
This story will find most people leaving it hard to believe but it is the TRUTH.
1987 we found ourselves with a Dad who had a major heart attack, lost of a job etc. Things did not look so good at Suzanne entering college that year. She was approached by persons with the Miss Texas pageant and we just could not buy clothes for her to enter any of them. A friend helped out and we bought used clothing. She went on stage with very simple clothes and a lot of heart. She was 1st runner up & talent to the first two pageants. Then she won Miss Humble Kingwood. In July Suzanne went to Miss Texas again in borrowed clothes. She was 13th place and had enough scholarship to enter Houston University and stay at home. She received a phone call from several colleges offering scholarships but not enough for her to go to them.
You see she had to have room and board and we could not even get enough for that. Texas Weslyn College in Fort Worth was the answer, scholarship plus room and board. We packed up and away we went to Ft Worth from Houston. I gave her the better car after seeing the area this college was in and warned her not to stray to far from the campus. This was the week before Labor Day weekend. I left her there with what I thought was the better car and $20.00, telling her the next payday I would send her more.
She called to say the college would be closed Friday thru Monday for Labor Day and she had enough gas to come home since she would be alone at the college. Her car did not start and guess what she was alone that week end at the college. She gave her roommate the $20.00 to go and bring back food for the weekend & that’s right she did not return. She called collect and her Dad told her to get food from the vending machines and he would send money for them when the college re opened. Suzanne alone and afraid at age 18 and never been away from home alone in an area which made her more afraid, we talked even in the night to make sure she was ok.
She said I will make it, I will make it and she did. Later years we laughed about that weekend especially since she was crowned Miss Texas.
Last night Miss Texas 2006 said even if you are poor you can make it if you try here in America.
I am very proud of Suzanne and all she accomplished and hearing the testmonies of all the ones she touched makes me proud to call her my daughter.
Thanks for all the comments. I am still putting that memory book for her children, so come on and tell me more stories of Suzanne. They are delightful.
When I first got the internet back in the Fall of 2003 I looked up Suzanne Lawrence. I was wondering what Suzanne was doing with her life since she crowned her successor. I remembered seeing her on Star Search and also one more Miss Texas pagent.
Suzanne stood out for me as the best ever Miss Texas. So to find out that Suzanne had passed away from cancer really shocked me.
The memory that stood out for me the most was the tallent competition during the Miss Texas competition. She sang the Platter’s “Only You.” I was so surprised that someone could not only sing the song with such heart, but also sang the song as if she was paying tribute to the song. Later I heard her inspiration of God had a huge impact of her singing the song. When she finished the song I thought to myself that Suzanne was going to win Miss Texas. Was I correct or what?
Suzanne’s life was cut short but in her lifetime she really did achieve so much. More than most individuals including celebrities, Presidents, and your next door neighbor. I was told by someone that knew some of the former Miss Texas winners that Suzanne was probably one of the most real individuals that ever won the Miss Texas crown. His list included Tara Watson, Shirley Cothran, Michelle Martinez, and Phyllis George along with Suzanne. I know he is correct with his list. Suzanne is probably one of the best representatives any state could have to wear the state crown!
This past week has been great. Suzanne’s children MaKayla & Gareth was in the school talent show. MaKayla sang a song she wrote in tribute to her Mom. I promised not to cry and got thru it without doing so but it was hard. Both children have her talent and her heart. They love with intense feelings and they feel the pain of others.
They may never go as far with the singing but the talent is there if they do.
I miss you Suzanne and I miss seeing you down in front the audience watching them.
Gareth said he knew you were there and he felt your love all around him. He is so caring and loving and misses the wonderful story time he had with you.
I have enjoyed all the wonderful things people say about you and still have people remember you and your kindness and love you showed for everyone.
I will get thru this day but I remember my last birthday before you left this earth. You were so sick, but insisted to take me to dinner. You said I worked hard and deserved a good dinner without cooking it. We laughed and laughed and talked of child hood memories with your sister Jennifer.
But this is another day and my memories are still just a vivid today of you and all you accomplished. But mostly I remember the first thing you said to me the moment you saw MaKayla “this is my proud moment, the most important moment of my life, to have this child, my little “BOO”. And again, when Gareth came, you woke to say “all that I have accomplish having my child was the most accomplished moment of my life”.
Then the last week, you kept saying, I love you Mom and You loved me, now Love my children the same way.
This Easter I will remember and will always love them as you loved me.
Suzanne taught an excercise class that I took (at the Women’s Hospital Center)while a student at Kingwood High School. The participants were my mother, myself, my boyfriend’s mom and several other women in their 40s and 50s. It was shortly after she had lost all the weight and had entered the Miss Humble (?) contest. She was so “real” and funny always talking about how she was “not really pretty” and showing us this or that imperfection (real or imagined) and singing during rest breaks or before class. We all had so much fun. She was such an honest and beautiful person that we all cheered for her to win. I have such happy memories of knowing her!
Suzanne is dearly missed but not forgotten. MaKayla her daughter is following in her footsteps with the beautiful personality and talent. July 28, 2007 she will sing on the Johnnie High Country Music Revue in Arlington Tx.
Funny thing exactly 20 years ago this month, Suzanne first appeared on Johnnie High. Some things keeps on growing even in death. MaKayla ‘s first thought was to tell her Mom I made, I am on the show. I am and still proud of Suzanne and now her children as well as all of my grandchildren who carry on the beauty from inside to give to others.
I would like to express my condolences on the loss of Suzanne Lawrence. I did not know her at all but I heard about her passing and was so touched by her story. I lost my wife to cancer when she was 35 years old and we had two small chilren at the time. A 7 year old daughter and a 2 year old son. I was so touched by the children’s wrtings. At every school event or activity, you can’t help but feel the presence of you dear loved on. My daughter will be leaving for college in two weeks and she told me recently how she wishes that her mom was here. Her high school graduation and prom were hard but we kept telling ourselves that mom is with us in spirit. I’m happy to read that you have a good relationship with the children’s dad. My in-laws have been great to us over the years. I thank God for them. Your faimily is in my prayers. May God aloways be with you all. My e-mail is email@example.com. Please feel free to send me a message at any time.
I’m another person who never met Suzanne, but has been profoundly influenced by her life. I’ve kept some excepts from an article written about her for 17 years and re-read the article over and over, inserting my name where her name was written as a method of encouraging myself to live the type of life that she lived. The article was published in the Fort Worth Star Telegram Tuesday, September 11, 1990 (Section 1, Page 3), written by Bill Thompson. It was entitled “Miss Texas Proves She’s a Winner.” It was written about Suzanne losing the Miss America Pageant. Here is the part I kept:
“Character. When you get to know Suzanne Lawrence what impresses you most is her character. Beyond the heart stopping physical beauty, beyond the breathtaking talent, beyond the irresistible charm and personal warmth, you are moved by her inner strength, her courage, her determination to overcome any obstacle or hardship that is placed in her path. This is not an individual to indulge in second-guessing or what-might-have-been. Suzanne Lawrence’s life goes on–no questions asked. “I feel like the Lord does everything for a reason,” she said. As she does with everyone she meets, Suzanne charmed them right out of their shoes. Anyone who says that you can’t put beauty and brains and personality in a package certainly hasn’t met you, Suzanne.”
I’m a teacher. I have decided to pass this article to a student who needs the same kind of encouragement that I got from reading and re-reading this story of Suzanne. Before parting with my beloved article, I decided I would try to see if I could find what had happened to Suzanne. I’m saddened to find that Suzanne has already left us, but her words ring in my head, “I feel like the Lord does everything for a reason.” Who knew that better than Suzanne? Her brief life will continue to bless others throughout the ages.
To Cheryl Wiemuth. I have read this statement over and over. Being a teacher you will find that this is just what teachers are about. In the 5th grade, my marriage broke up and financial times were hard. The Lord was on our side and I knew if I kept the faith he would come thru for my children. Suzanne had already accepted him at an early age and anyone knew her knew her Saviour thru her. Her talents were beginning to blossom and so was her personality which had long come thru before this time. She entered the 7th grade in an area of town I did not want to be in. Lot of troubled parents.Abused kids and kids in trouble with everything including the law.Drugs, liquor, sex was very apparent and the school had the biggest job just teaching and very little getting the arts or sports from the kids. But Suzanne said I won’t allow this to get me down. She went to a 7th grade vocal & music teacher who visited the school once a week for an hour for those who wanted to have some arts in their life. She told the teacher how much she wanted to have more of music in her life and told her that Mom was struggling with just keeping the needs up. This teacher said I will help you and she did. She offered to give her help on her music outside of school time with no money. Suzanne would go to her home twice a week and she helped her. She turned out to be the daughter of a local owner of a piano and musical instrument shop. She got Suzanne a violin to play and help her learn to play. Suzanne went to State level that year and won silver medal for violin. That year she also went to state for choir and won gold medal for solo event. This was the first time this school had ever had any type of a winner for any of the local and state events. This made her popular with some students but un popular with others due to she began to influence who she could to stop the bad issues in their life and take up the good things. The teacher was so happy and soon had a room full of students for music and art. They extended the times of coming to the school to 3 days a week and some of the kids begin to have hope again. In the 8th grade, we had to move and Suzanne became discouraged thinking that she had maybe lost all that was going good for her. But a principal of that school took her aside and said exactly what I said to her many times and never took value from me. But coming from a prinicpal she listened. He said Suzanne the Lord put you here for the same reason he put all of us here, to Love, Honor and obey his will in our life. When one door closes he opens another, you opened the door at the last school and now this school needs the closed door opened. And that she did, her influence went on and on. When I married again, we moved to Houston TX and not once did she give up. She was in volunteer services and competed music shows, drill team for the school. She then was in pageants but not many. She had to wear 2nd hand clothes sometimes due to her wonderful loving step father had a major heart attack and could not work at the same level he had been doing. But I will never forget she said Dad (that is exactly what you are) we will be here for you because you are there for us even when we are down we are up. Suzanne went on the winning so much it was scary sometimes. Her music, her joy, her laughter and all that spread all over the Houston area. She never thought of loosing but only gaining one more person to let them know that Jesus Christ was more important than all the titles and winnings. She took under her wings all who needed her. Even in the last years of her life, she helped young girls improve in the their talents and abilities to be what Christ had them here to be, a Witness for him.
Suzanne has left a legacy that no one can deny, her love and love for others has come thru in all the marvelous things people are testifying to now.
She will live on forever and one day we will be together again forever.
My testimoney is our Heavenly Father gave me a joy in having her even in the short time it was worth having her. I now have to tell you I have another joy just like her, Jennifer who was the quiet and in the back ground child. But had the same love and joy she had. Jennifer has given me as much joy as Suzanne has and she will continue to do so. I am very proud of the spirits Heavenly Father gave me and I know Jennifer is sharing that spirit with her children as Suzanne did during her time and now we both share the spirit of the Father with Suzanne’s children. I pray my love for the Father and his son Jesus will continue in my grandchildren and theirs to come. That is our purpose to teach the children to become like Jesus.
Love to all who given their testimony and please all the others please give yours for Suzanne’s children to read
I want very much to hear more of your feelings and testimony of how Suzanne influenced your life as her children are reading these they get a deep love and more understanding of who their Mom was even to others. They miss her but she will always be with her thru all of you who knew her. Let them hear your testimony of knowing her, please.
I am so sorry about the loss of Suzanne. She was a wonderful, kind, loving person. I went to High School with her in Splendora. She was a year older than me, but we had a class or two together. She was so nice to everyone and always had an uplifting and encouraging word for people. She was an inspiration. The world has lost one of it’s finest!!! Suzanne was truly one of those people who lived “Beauty is as beauty does!” Her beauty was not just skin deep – it came from within and radiated through her entire being – if you stood too close to her, you couldn’t help but feeling happier, prettier, nicer… She just had that charisma and positive effect on those she came into contact with. She will truly be missed. I am so sorry about your loss. I look forward to seeing her again “on the other side”… 🙂 She was a true angel while she was on this earth and I know she’s continuing in that now…
hey i am MaKaylas friend and she relay misses you so much and i wish i could meet you you seem so cool and edvenchores
Suzanne by my very best, dearest friend. I went to high school with her in Splendora and we were inseperable until she moved to Kingwood. We lost touch but I was lucky enough to catch up with her about a year or two before she passed away. She sent me pictures of her children and we reminisced over the “old days”. I have shared the times Suzanne and I spent together with my children. I have several pictures of Suzanne (on a drama trip outside Chuck E Cheese, at school and performing at a local night club in Cleveland). They are very cherished memories and I will always miss her. Ann, I think the hardest thing a mother could ever go through is to lose her children and I admire your strength as I know that is where Suzanne drew her strength from!
I met Suzanne when I was younger, she was a friend of my uncle. I learned of her passing a few years ago. The little that I knew of her she was a wonderful person with a very kind heart. I remember her letting me and my sister try on her crown. She had a beautiful voice that everytime I hear a Patsy Cline song I always think of her. Ive been reading some articles on Suzanne’s life and its wonderful to read all the accomplishments she achieved. Im only sorry I wasnt able to have known her longer.
I was just sitting hear listening to Patsy Cline and low and behold….”Sweet Dreams”….came on. This automatically took me back to the Miss America Pageant. Suzanne is the only person I have ever known who could sing this song better than Patsy. Makayla and Gareth you two have been blessed with your mommy’s talent. Please use it to reach out to people as your mommy did. You kids, like myself, were blessed to have a mommy that in many peoples eyes were angels on earth. And now your mommy and my mommy are angels in Heaven watching over us. I guess we all better be good boys and girls!!! Hugs to you both, and your Grammy.
I have not been on line because my computer broke and my IT dept at work blocked this page. But tonight I have a new computer and tonigh I remember so much ….today is Suzanne’s birthday and Gareth & MaKayla took flowers on Mother’s day and taking more this week. They miss her and talk about her with me. I share her momemts of her childhood and with her sister the laughter and joy they had growing up. But tonight more is happening than I ever dreamed would happen, I am very very amazed, MaKayla can sing and wow! she is good. She has performed on Johnnie High Country Music Review and around town locally. She is so proud she can sing, never thought it could happen. Thanks over and over for all your comments and prayers. Shannon you are great to her memory. I am hoping you can see on stage her look alike MaKayla. Love to all and blessings from the Love of Jesus.
Hi It has been a while since I have been able to read this article. I have been and sick and my computer went south. I still am amazed at the statements and yet proud of them as well. MaKayla and Gareth miss her but they are doing very good.They are image of her. MaKayla can sing and beginning to sing around town. She is good and has also appeared on Johnny High Country Music Revue. Thanks to all who have remembered Suzanne and still remember her after almost 5 years. Love to all ..Mom
I am soo sad to hear of Suzanne’s passing. I just found out and can’t stop crying. Last weekend my parents and I were talking about her and wondered after the Miss Texas title what had happened to her. I first met Suzanne when I lived in Splendora. Since 5th grade I competed in the schools talent show and of course she was right there with me. She never had a bad word to say and always encouraged me to go for it. I am just speechless as I thought I would google her and just knew she would be out there somewhere living her dreams and probably surrounded by kids. I knew how much she wanted to be a mother even back then. I never dreamed I would be reading about her death. Her mom and sister were also really great people. I remember them fondly. I’m glad she went on to make the most out of the time she had. She was living proof that not all angels have wings. She and the entire family will be in my prayers.
Wow, Suzanne was a very fun and kind person. If this is the Suzanne from Cleveland,TX. I lost track after I left for school in Austin, but wondered what happened to her. I later saw her on the National Pageant after I moved to Alaska with my wife. Suzanne and I were good friends and I took her to my Sr. Prom back in ’85 or so. I am very sad to hear of her passing. What a great smile and a kind heart!
I knew Suzanne in high school and was in drama with her and in some plays with her. She was one of the most gracious and elegant people for someone of her age back then. Most girls at that time were still girls but she was already a lady.
She possessed such class and eloquence.
She was quite a brilliant actress, too. I was in a play with her called Another Part of the Forest where she played my elderly ailing mother and her sweet and light voice gave her character this kind of mesmerizing, haunting and at the same time angelic quality. It was a beautiful performance. I thought she was absolutely amazing and a lot of us were quite sure she’d end up being in the movies or become a big star and I have no doubt she would be today if she had ever wanted to pursue that. And learning of her becoming Chief Anchor for the news channel in Georgia makes me all the more proud of her.
She was a great and good person.
I lost touch with Suzanne after graduation and it wasn’t until many years after I had learned through others perhaps, that she was struggling with cancer. But before that and after high school, one day when I was in college (I was at UT Austin) and I was with a bunch of friends in a house I was living in, I just happened to turn on the TV right as she began to sing “Sweet Dreams” in the Miss America pageant on live television. I couldn’t believe it! What were the chances of that happening and me turning on the TV at that exact moment?? She was riveting and I was so proud of her and so I made it known to all my friends there. They were all amazed, too. She truly was magnificent, a genuinely gifted and wonderful person and so very, very talented. To this day even, I still associate that song with her before I think of Patsy Cline. I only just found out yesterday of her passing and I am deeply saddened and I went searching for more news of her and stumbled across this loving page.
I remember visiting my parents in Kingwood after she won Miss Texas and saw her on a billboard on highway 59 heading to Kingwood from Humble where she was featured as the spokesperson for a cancer organization she was involved with. Again, a testament to her goodness.
I lost my mom to cancer. She passed away in Kingwood in 2004. My dad still lives there and I live in New York City.
Anyway, Suzanne is and was an inspiration to me and should have been for so many more. She truly was a beautiful person, inside and out right down to her core and even though I haven’t spoken with her in over twenty years, I miss her suddenly and feel a deep sense of loss.
My thoughts are with you and yours.
Bless and thanks,
I went to school with Suzanne in Kingwood, it was either middle school or early high school before I left to Eygpt. I remember that she had the most beautiful blond hair and she sang like an angel. She sang a song to us in gym class and we all said what a lovely voice that she had and I knew she was going to be a star. I am glad that she was able to enjoy some of her dreams and was able to share her kind, caring ways with others. It was a honor to have been a small part of her early dreams. She had the sweetest Texas accent and loved everyone around her. To her family, She was a great inspiration to all of us and her heavenly voice will live on. She truely is an angel. Angela
Suzanne, I know your daughter through school, To let you know she is doing great, Even know I didn’t know you personaly you seem great your daughter takes after you in her beauty.
Jordan, I read your remarks. Surprised to realize someone in MaKayla’s life knows she is just like her MOM>
All that reads this should know, MaKayla sang this two past weekend in Wylie TX., at their Opry. She was great, better than she will ever know. She is so warm, loving and kind.
Life for her is turning out really good. If any of you read this, her next performance will be in Alvin TX. at the Alvin Opry.COME. you will enjoy.
Grammy, Ann Lawrence
Thanks Jordan, your comments are very sincere and caring. Yes MaKayla is a great girl.
Everyone should know MaKayla is now singing on oprys around the area. She was on Wylie Opry last 2 weekends and now is booked for Houston, Stephenville, Farmersville and Carthage TX oprys.
she is really good and enjoying it …any one wants to hear her, come 1/3 Alvin Opry, Alvin, TX and hear her. You want be disappointed. Or if in the DFW area, come to Stephenville 1/10 she is there as well. Then 1/24 in Carthage TX…2/7 she will be in Farmersville TX opry. and back to Stephenville, TX 2/14 Hope to see some of you there.
Jordan thank you, you are right MaKayla is beautiful but she is talented too.
1/3/2009, she will appear on Alvin opry, near Houston,
1/10/09 Stephenville, TX opry
1/24 Carthage, TX opry
2/7 Farmersville Tx opry
2/14 Stephenville TX again.
she is getting to be known and her singing ability is really good. Hope you will come see her.
I am numb with this news and only wish I had the ability to express myself in a way she deserves.
I met her in my 2nd semester at TWU (1987) and beacame great friends emediately. I can’t listen to Patsy Cline without thinking of her. She sang like an angel and was stunning. She had a little scar by her nose that I just loved. I don’t know how many times I wached her preform but every one of them was brilliant. I am honored that she trusted me and looked to me for guidence as I was older than she. She was my best freind in college and I can still hear that Alabama accent when she would say my name. I think of her often. God bless her and her family.
Hi Ann. I came across this blog online and wanted to write to you. I was just going through old photos and came across pictures of Suzanne and I together. I miss her too. She was a good friend and even when we lost track of each other, once reconnected we picked up right where we left off. I am so glad to hear about the kids doing well, I regret never getting a chance to meet them when she was alive, but have a photo of them that she sent me and keep it with a photo of her and I together. Take care and God Bless.
Hearing all the beautiful and sincere things about Suzanne makes me know she was the lady I raised her to be.
And now, I have the greatest experience to teach and help her daughter MaKayla. She is now singing at oprys around Texas. She has now appeared on Johnnie High Country Music Revue, Wylie Opry, Farmersville Opry, Carthage Country Opry, Stephenville,Tx and even down to Houston Area at Alvin Opry.
She is as beautiful and talented as her Mom and maybe more.
I miss Suzanne but having her children MaKayla & Gareth makes things easier.
Thanks for the wonderful feelings everyone has for Suzanne, and if in the areas where MaKayla is performing come out see her. Won’t regret it.l
Seventeen years old, watching the Miss America Pageant from my country home in Louisiana…I heard a voice singing Patsy Cline’s “Sweet Dreams” that is to this day unmatched. I could tell Suzanne was not only beautiful or only a talented singer; she had a driving force which was inner beauty as well. I am blessed to have had enthusiasm for Miss America for years, as it allowed me to be touched with Suzanne’s light. Years later I discovered the news of her passing, yet only today found this forum. I offer my condolences, and smile remembering Suzanne as well.
hey just heard your song on youtube i couldnt stop but seeing you i love you and if there wernt youtube all i would have were memories i relly mis you i dont want to be mean but why take you why not someone else why was it YOUR time to go you were only 38 its not fair but ill stop cause i know you would get mad at me for saying this.
I did not that Suzanne had passed away. In the 1990’s I interview her on our “Coping With cancer radio Show, plus she did a Television show with us, we had on Public access cable in San Antonio also called “Coping With Cancer. I’m a 2 time cancer survivor, I was so blessed by her as she encouraged so many other cancer patients.
I don’t know if you remember me but I was the traveling nurse that took care of you post surgery in april or may of 1989. you introduced me to your lovely daughter Suzanne and we dated the entire time I was in texas. Suzanne was a wonderful person so full of energy and faith and I am just now finding out about her passing. I send my deepest regrets to you and her family. She truly touched my life in a way that I will never forget, I will always remember her and hold a special place in my heart for her. Remember shes never gone as long as someone has a memory of her and all she represented in life. She will never be gone for me cause shes still in my special memories.
all my thoughts and wishs of happiness
I saw this site, looking for my girl’s stuff on You Tube. Its ironic how many similarities they share, including their passion for the Miss America program and love of Patsy Cline. I do not know if this blog is even read anymore, but Suzanne’s story is so touching and inspirational and defined by unselfishness and concern for others, it touched my heart and those I have shared the You Tube postings with, and those who have read these pages. Her story reminds me of Terry Fox, who is still one of the most admired Canadians ever. I also have seen the Gretchen Carlson story from years ago on CBS, and realize that here lived someone who really was each and everything great and good written about them, after they were gone.
Her story deserves a book, or a film, or something for people younger than us to embrace.
She will never be forgotten she would still be doing good things for others because her heart was so loving and she saw good in all. Not sure where to go for her story to be told but I would love share her story as she beautiful moments and heart break as well. She has two children that the legacy will leave on in them. Her beautiful love is in them.