Susan Ellen Barnes

1941 – 2020

Susan passed away in her husband’s arms April 16, 2020, as the result of unexpected heart failure.

She leaves a big empty place in our hearts and we will miss her beyond words, but we take comfort in knowing she was brave and loving.

Her children, for whom she lived and breathed each day, are strong, loving adults with beautiful children of their own — all a result of Susie’s guidance and gentle mothering.

Family was the center of her life. With three natural children and three stepchildren, she was always the dependable wife and mother who understood and responded with love and honesty. On the lighter side, Susie loved laughter and beauty, and we visualize her driving a little red MG convertible like the one she had at C.W. Post College.

Born in Glen Cove, N.Y., to Ulysses and Dorothy Gallanos, she became an excellent scholar, earning an undergraduate degree in psychology from C.W. Post, which she attended on a four-year academic scholarship. She then went on to earn advanced degrees in developmental psychology and family therapy from Columbia University, Seton Hall University and SUNY/New Paltz.

Susan went on to become a certified school psychologist and was genuinely dedicated to helping children and families in difficult situations. She worked at Ichabod Crane Central School and the Shelter Island and Oysterponds school districts over a span of 20-plus years. Susan was a consummate counselor and non-judgmental listener who understood your pain and responded with wisdom and the truth. When you asked her a question, you knew her answer would be sensitive and include the honesty you needed to hear.

Susan was a leader at the Southold Historical Society as a board member, vice president and very active volunteer at the society’s Treasure Exchange for many years. She was also an avid gardener, a member of the Southold Garden Club and, with her husband, John, ran the Shorecrest B&B for several years.

She is survived by her husband, John Barnes of Southold and now Cutchogue; three children, Alexis and Anneliese Grossjohann of Berlin, Germany, and Suzanne O’Boyle of Monroe, N.Y.; and three stepchildren, Shawn Barnes of Virginia, Joel Barnes of California and Nathan Barnes of New Hampshire. She is also survived by two sisters: Priscilla Ruffin of Westhampton Beach and Darcy Paddock of Rochester, N.Y.; eight grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

Arrangements were made through Coster-Heppner Funeral Home in Cutchogue. A memorial service is to be held at a later date. Announcements will be made. There will be no funeral or wake, due to COVID-19. Memorial donations may be made to the Southold Historical Society, P.O. Box 1, Southold, NY 11971 or by phone at 631-765-5500.

This is a paid notice.