Quilts of Valor in Bridgewater

Aug 15, 2022

Categories: Blog

Did you know we have a ‘Quilts of Valor’ quilter in the community?


What is a Quilt of Valor? A Quilt of Valor is a handmade quilt that is machine or hand quilted. It is awarded to a Service Member or Veteran who has been touched by war. The Quilt says unequivocally, “Thank you for your service and sacrifice in serving our nation.”


Meet Bridgewater Resident Susan Smit. Susan was born and raised in London, UK. At the age of eight, her family immigrated to South Africa. She has been married to her husband, Bruce for 40 years. After serving in the South African Air Force, Bruce’s work brought him to the United States in the late ‘70s and he returned in 1981 as a student. That was their first taste of America. In 1985 with Green Cards and Sponsorships in hand, Susan and Bruce immigrated to the United States.


Although Susan is a teacher by trade her career included raising three children and heading the Day Care Center at Yale University. Susan’s interest in textiles goes back to her high school days. Making quilts came about because her children advised her that they were “sick of wearing homemade clothes”. Over the years Susan has made several quilts for family and friends. She has been stitching for Quilts of Valor for the past year and is inspired and motivated to make these beautiful quilts for our heroes.


Susan’s other interests include gardening, knitting, crocheting, and traveling to visit family. She is a member of the Blue Star Mothers of South Carolina, sending care packages to soldiers domestic and overseas several times a year. Her son, James, is currently an officer in the US Navy.


Although Susan and Bruce moved to SC and the Bridgewater community in 2021, they have owned a vacation home here since 2004 and realized this was their retirement location.


You’ll get a chance to enjoy Susan’s talent in your own home soon. She has graciously made two items which will be raffled off by our Bridgewater Veterans Group this fall. You will have an opportunity to win the tree skirt OR the table topper in these patriotic patterns. Susan’s talents are amazing, and her generous donation would be a welcomed addition to any home.


If you see Susan out and about, be sure to thank you and find out more about her fascinating history.


Submitted by Chris Ellen Lemczak, Bridgewater Resident