“Always leave a place better than you found it” is how he lived every day of his life.
On Tuesday, October 11, 2011, Donald George Swanson, 69, was ushered from this world after a short duel with pancreatic cancer. “Swanny” was born in Gary, Indiana on Thursday, May 21, 1942, to Harold and Dorothy Jo Swanson, but did not stay there long. When he was 6, they moved to Corona del Mar, where his father became the city’s first walking postal carrier, and his mother opened Dorothy Jo Dance Studio. After school, it was not long before he started his career with the Costa Mesa Fire Department. Captain Swanson served his community as rescuer, life-saver, and hero for 35 years, retiring in 2003. With more time on his hands, “Duckson” found a new brotherhood, and many good friends, among several Christian men’s groups. He died surrounded by family and beloved friends, and being sung to by friend and pastor, Sam Parsons.
He is survived by sons, Jed and Jake (Johanna), and his sister, Alexandra. There will be a Memorial Service on Sunday, October 16 at 12:30 at Newport Dunes (101 North Bayside Dr. Enter off PCH and mention Don’s memorial for free parking). In true Swanny fashion, “Hawaiian Shirt-Type-Casual” is appropriate. Enjoy reading the wonderful tributes at www.caringbridge.org/visit/donswanson1. In lieu of flowers, Don would be thrilled to have you donate to Sam Parson’s ministry, www.goodnewsministry.net