It is with great sadness that I announce that passing of David D. Bruen, Putnam’s first County Executive. Dave was an honorable public servant and leaves a legacy of distinguished service to his county and to his Brewster community.
David Duncan Bruen was born in Brewster to Matthew Raymond Bruen and Mildred S. Duncan on August 14, 1929. He passed away at home on February 1, 2014 at 84 years of age.
On June 16, 1951, after graduating from Fordham University, David married the love of his life, Marilyn Ann King of Brewster.
David was a resident of Brewster his entire life. He is survived by his nine children, Diana Bruen Stevens (Tom), Margaret Bruen, David M. Bruen (Karen), Bonnie King (Jim), Kathleen B. McGrath (Brian), James Duncan Bruen, Mary B. Tedesco (Mike), Marilyn B. Merkel (Fred), Susan B. Power (Tom) and twenty-two grandchildren. He is also survived by his brother, Donald P. Bruen, his sister June H. Garcia and brother-in-law, James E. King.
David was a life long member of the St. Lawrence O’Toole Parish where he served as lector. He began his insurance career as a special Marine Agent for The Insurance Company of North America in White Plains and eventually, owned and operated a successful insurance and real estate business in Brewster.
David served Putnam County as an elected official for 26 celebrated years. Following his 18 years serving as County treasurer, David was elected as the first Putnam County Executive in 1978. He served two four-year terms as County Executive, stepping down in 1986.
In 1990 and again in 2000, David was appointed to groups tasked with reviewing the County Charter. In 2003, the Putnam County Office Building was dedicated and renamed the David D. Bruen County Office Building in his honor.
David’s contributions and dedication to his community included volunteer work with the Brewster Rotary, the Salvation Army, Friendly Sons of St. Patrick and the Knights of Columbus.
David also served on the Board of Directors of the Putnam County Savings Bank, on the Executive Board of the Putnam Hospital Center, the Board of Trustees of the Brewster Public Library and Board of Directors of the Society for the Preservation of Putnam County Antiquities and Greenways.
Although an avid golfer, sailor, skier, hunter, stargazer, nature lover and humanitarian, David will be most remembered for his unyielding love and respect for family, friends and country, always lending a helping hand without question, without judgment.
In lieu of flowers, the Bruen family requests donations be sent to Brewster Rotary, P. O. Box 162, Brewster, NY 10509.
To honor this remarkable man, David D. Bruen will lie in state in the Historic Putnam County Courthouse from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Tuesday, February 4. The courthouse is located at 44 Gleneida Avenue, Carmel, NY. A later viewing will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Beecher Funeral Home, 1 Putnam Avenue, Brewster, NY.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. at on Wednesday, February 5 at St. Lawrence O’Toole Church, 31 Prospect Avenue, Brewster, NY. Interment will follow immediately at St. Lawrence O’Toole Cemetery on Turk Hill Road in Brewster.
Following the interment, friends will be welcomed at the Bruen family home, 70 Birch Hill Road, Brewster, NY 10509.