Bernard A. Bradley
Bernard “Barney” Alan Bradley, 79, died peacefully Friday, Aug. 19, 2011, at his home, after waging a courageous battle with cancer.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 27, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, in Pinehurst, with the Rev. James M. Labosky officiating. A luncheon will follow the service at Ironwood Café, Pinehurst. Interment of ashes will take place at Bronswood Cemetery, Oak Brook, Ill., at a later date.
Mr. Bradley was born April 13, 1932, in Okmulgee, Okla., the oldest child of the late Bernard A. and Helen R. Bradley. As a youngster in Okmulgee, he attended grade school in a simple schoolhouse and later graduated from St. Anthony High School. Mr. Bradley received his undergraduate degree in business from Oklahoma A&M College and a Master of Science in economics from Oklahoma State University, where he met his wife, Linda, and briefly taught economics. He also served in a non-combat role with the U.S. Army early in the Vietnam War.
He joined his uncle’s business, Piccadilly Cafeterias, in Baton Rouge, La., after graduation from college. Upon leaving the food-service industry, the family moved to Pittsburgh and subsequently to New Jersey, where Mr. Bradley became a stockbroker in Philadelphia. While in New Jersey, he and Linda frequently visited New York City to enjoy cultural events.
Mr. Bradley was recruited to join a small Pittsburgh-based steel fixtures manufacturing company to open new accounts in untapped territory across the U.S. The new opportunity brought the family to Chicago, where they lived for 40 years and raised their family. Mr. Bradley became vice president of sales and spent 17 years with the company, boosting it from a regional business to a successful national contender.
Later, he developed an interest in renovating investment properties in the Chicago area and launched Bradley Builders, where his creative flair took flight and his love of people made him many new friends and brought the business great success.
Mr. Bradley fell in love with Pinehurst at first sight, and Linda had to promise him they would relocate here when he retired. In 2005, at age 73, he and Linda moved to Pinewild after his first encounter with cancer.
Passionate about traveling, Mr. Bradley circumnavigated the globe, visiting 90 countries and all 50 U.S. states, mostly with Linda in tow. They cataloged their travels in numerous photo albums that filled two 5-foot high cabinets in their home. He also had a keen interest in geography and enjoyed studying about other countries and cultures.
Mr. Bradley’s remarkable business acumen and entrepreneurial spirit helped many companies and organizations succeed in their missions. He put his building expertise to work while serving on the architectural review board in Pinewild. His particular interest in mentoring and encouraging a number of young people in the Sandhills contributed to their success in college and helped them thrive.
Mr. Bradley had a great appreciation for fine dining, theater and art. Classical music was a passion, and he provided early and enthusiastic backing to the new North Carolina Philharmonic.
He was an avid professional football fan and during football season, Linda scheduled their busy social calendar around the NFL games. He also started a neighborhood poker group, where he would often delight his friends with stories that mysteriously expanded upon each re-telling.
Mr. Bradley was preceded in death by his brothers Jerry David Bradley and Robert Richards Bradley; and a son, Gerald “Jerry” David Bradley.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 53 years, Linda Ann Bradley, of Pinehurst; a son, Bernard Alan Bradley and his wife, Linda, of Lombard, Ill.; three daughters, Cheryl Koth and her husband, Doug, of Bloomington, Ill., Deborah Bradley, of New York City, and Julie Bradley, of St. Charles, Ill.; brothers James Michael Bradley, of Kerrville, Texas, and Patrick Bradley, of Fletcher; an aunt, Julie Richards Hamilton, of Baton Rouge; nine grandchildren; and many nieces, nephews, cousins, neighbors and friends who thought the world of him.
Mr. Bradley will be remembered for his wit, compassion, generosity and astute intellect. He embraced life fully and with great enthusiasm. In the past 18 months of his life, while battling cancer, he celebrated his life with his family and friends enriching their days as he had lived his — with great joy.
The family offers special thanks to FirstHealth Hospice and Palliative Care; Charles Kuzma, M.D.; and the loving nurses at Moore Regional Hospital’s Cancer Center. Grateful appreciation is also offered to the Rev. James M. Labosky, who will return to Pinehurst to officiate Mass; and to David Michael Wolff, conductor, Carolina Philharmonic, who will produce the music for the service.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Carolina Philharmonic, 460 Midland Road, Pinehurst, NC 28374, with the notation “in memory of Barney Bradley”; or to Susan G. Komen for the Cure, P.O. Box 650309, Dallas, TX 75265-0309, or by visiting www.komen.org and clicking on memorial donations.
Online condolences may be made at www.BolesFuneralhome.com.
Boles Funeral Home of Pinehurst is assisting the family.