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Celebrating the life of
Nancy Swanberg Bradshaw
May 15, 1935 - May 21, 2016
Services under the direction of:
Bradshaw Carter
(713) 521-0066
  • Memorial Service
  • 11:00am - Saturday, June 25, 2016
  • Palmer Memorial Episcopal Church
  • 6221 Main Street (Map)
    Houston, Texas 77030

  • 713.529.6196

Family: our deepest condolences on your loss. May you find comfort in family, friends and good memories at this time, and may you find peace in John 5:28, 29 in the future prospect of seeing her again. Take care of yourselves.

Jess, Houston, Tx

I would like to offer my condolences to the Bradshaw family. Hopefully this scripture will give you comfort because God is promising us he will do away with man's worst enemy, death. This is found for us at Rev. 21: 3,4; "With that I heard a loud voice from the throne say: "Look! The tent of God is with mankind, and he will reside with them, and they will be his people. "And God himself will be with them." And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore.") Also, (www.jw.org search "comfort" or "why we die") has provided me with many more scriptures that have given me comfort and helped me find the answer to Why? I know it will do the same for you. God's kingdom that Jesus taught us to pray for at Matthew 6: 9, 10 will bring about these wonderful promises including the resurrection. John 6: 40 tells us: "For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who recognizes the Son and exercises faith in him should have everlasting life, and I will resurrect him on the last day." This is a wonderful promise made to us by our heavenly father and I pray it brings you comfort and hope. I offer my sincere condolences to the family.

Myran Julie Jarmon, Midland City, Al

Nancy was a beautiful person with a wonderful soul. I will never forget my invaluable experience in her Gestalt group, listening to Jay McShann at Rockefeller's and her great laugh, among many memories. A family event the weekend of June 26 prevents me from attending the memorial service, but please know you are in my thoughts. With love,

Cheryl Rhode, Houston, TX

NANCY SWANBERG BRADSHAW passed away in the Austin area on Saturday, May 21, 2016, at the age of 81 due to complications related to multi-infarct dementia.

Nancy was born Nancy Gail Swanberg in Quincy, Illinois on May 15, 1935, to Dr. William Harold Swanberg, originally of Philadelphia, and Mildred Chapman Wilber, originally of Yellville, Arkansas. Her father served as the local radiologist and the family enjoyed a level of prominence in the small town located on the Mississippi River. Nancy attended Webster Elementary School and, due to her intelligence, started college at the early age of 15 attending Francis Shimer Junior College, then part of the University of Chicago. She later studied at the Sorbonne in Paris and at the University of Missouri, Columbia where she was a member of the Chi Omega Sorority and engaged in student government as well as the Association of Women Students, earning a Bachelor of Arts in English at the age of 20 in 1955.

Throughout her late adolescence and early adult years, Nancy enjoyed a variety of budding careers including modeling, writing, and journalism. She also traveled extensively throughout Europe and spent summers at the Swanberg family retreat on West Twin Lake, near Nisswa, Minnesota, often attending Camp Lake Hubert for girls. She continued to spend summers at West Twin Lake until the 1980s.

In 1956, Nancy married Joseph Don Isaacs (1933-2008) of Faucett, Missouri, whom she had met while attending the University of Missouri. While the marriage only lasted a few years, the union produced two children, Joseph Bradley Isaacs in Sacramento, and Brenda Gail Isaacs (Booth) in Kansas City; she remained friendly with the Isaacs family throughout her life.

In the 1960s, Nancy moved to Houston, Texas. There she wrote articles for The Houston Post and taught medical writing at Baylor College of Medicine. Among her many accomplishments, she was a 1963 Fellowship Recipient of the American Medical Writers Association, an organization founded by her father in 1940.

In 1969, Nancy married John Elliot Bradshaw (1935-2016) of Houston, who would later become a best-selling author, nationally known speaker, and television personality. Nancy helped fuel John’s early rise to prominence by marketing his lectures and workshops through Bradshaw Cassettes, a company she founded. She was an active member of Palmer Memorial Episcopal Church, participated in various educational organizations in Houston, and was heavily involved in the gestalt therapy community. Married twenty years, Nancy and John had one son, John Elliot Bradshaw Jr., and continued as business associates for several years following their divorce in 1989. They remained lifelong friends.

In the 1990s, Nancy moved to Durango, Colorado, where she enjoyed a stately home in the mountains along the Animas River and a flourishing life in the community. During her years there, she participated in equestrian activities and local organizations, most notably Bandanas & Boots, a charity initiative raising funds for local nonprofits. In 2008, she returned to Texas to be closer to her children and grandchildren.

Her struggle with dementia began with an early diagnosis in 2000; the affliction slowly progressed until she required full-time care. Her final years were spent at Silverado Memory Care Community in Bee Cave, Texas, just north of Austin. She was surrounded by her children at the time of her death.

Throughout her life, Nancy had a remarkable financial acumen and a wide range of pursuits and hobbies, each of which she approached with an intensity and single-mindedness that reflected her high intelligence and eclectic interests. Often reserved in public, she had a wonderful vitality and earnestness, a deep love for family and friends, and endearing eccentricities that made her a unique and remarkable person.

Nancy was preceded in death by her father William Harold Swanberg, M.D. (1891-1970); mother Mildred Wilber Swanberg (1901-1987), brother (William Harold) Bill Swanberg Jr. (1920-1987), and sister Mary Louise Spiva Burnham (1926-1999).

She is survived by her eldest sister Jo Ann Spiva Kimball of Poway, California; son Joseph Bradley Isaacs of Austin; daughter Brenda Isaacs Booth of Austin; son John Elliot Bradshaw Jr. of Houston; grandchildren Liam Elliot Booth, Jackson Cowdrey Booth, and Cassie Rose Isaacs, all of Austin; and numerous nephews, nieces, and cousins spanning the country.

A memorial service in her honor will take place at eleven o’clock in the morning on Saturday, June 25, 2016 at Palmer Memorial Episcopal Church, 6221 Main Street, in Houston. The Reverend Neil Alan Willard will officiate. Nancy’s remains will be interred with those of her father at the Woodland Cemetery Mausoleum in Quincy, Illinois.

Customary remembrances are being handled through Bradshaw-Carter Memorial & Funeral Services (bradshawcarter.com), (713) 521-0066. Nancy’s three children welcome messages from her friends, colleagues, and classmates at the following email: WeRememberNancy@gmail.com.

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Family: our deepest condolences on your loss. May you find comfort in family, friends and good memories at this time, and may you find peace in John 5:28, 29 in the future prospect of seeing her again. Take care of yourselves.

Jess, Houston, Tx

I would like to offer my condolences to the Bradshaw family. Hopefully this scripture will give you comfort because God is promising us he will do away with man's worst enemy, death. This is found for us at Rev. 21: 3,4; "With that I heard a loud voice from the throne say: "Look! The tent of God is with mankind, and he will reside with them, and they will be his people. "And God himself will be with them." And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore.") Also, (www.jw.org search "comfort" or "why we die") has provided me with many more scriptures that have given me comfort and helped me find the answer to Why? I know it will do the same for you. God's kingdom that Jesus taught us to pray for at Matthew 6: 9, 10 will bring about these wonderful promises including the resurrection. John 6: 40 tells us: "For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who recognizes the Son and exercises faith in him should have everlasting life, and I will resurrect him on the last day." This is a wonderful promise made to us by our heavenly father and I pray it brings you comfort and hope. I offer my sincere condolences to the family.

Myran Julie Jarmon, Midland City, Al

Nancy was a beautiful person with a wonderful soul. I will never forget my invaluable experience in her Gestalt group, listening to Jay McShann at Rockefeller's and her great laugh, among many memories. A family event the weekend of June 26 prevents me from attending the memorial service, but please know you are in my thoughts. With love,

Cheryl Rhode, Houston, TX


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