I'm actually running Deb Sarge myself, with similar issues, "echo -n "mem" > state" doesn't work... here's a script I'm working on (I have sound issues on resume that I haven't yet figured out)
echo "Initializing Suspend-to-RAM..."
# Empty logfile
echo > /tmp/suspend.log
#stop hotplug daemon (crash causer)
/etc/init.d/hotplug stop >> /tmp/suspend.log 2>&1
# Sleep cmd, here's your important one:
echo 3 > /proc/acpi/sleep
/etc/init.d/hotplug start >> /tmp/suspend.log 2>&1 &
good luck, hope this helps you out some!