Colonial Funeral Home & Crematory
591 Ridgeview Drive
McHenry, IL 60050
(815) 385-0063
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Obituary Condolences

Kenneth A. "Ken" Swanson of Ringwood Kenneth A. "Ken" Swanson, 78, died at the Northern Illinois Medical Center in McHenry on March 8, 2013 after battling complications of diabetes for many years. He was born on September 14, 1934 at Augustana Hospital in Chicago to Adolph E. and Estelle (Walensa) Swanson. On March 27, 1954 he married Martha Jane "Marti" Baldwin, daughter of Francis M. and Irville (Miller) Baldwin, at the First Methodist Church of Oak Park. Ken grew up in Evergreen Park and was a 1952 graduate of Blue Island Community High School, where he lettered in football, basketball, and baseball. He was a 1956 graduate of Illinois Wesleyan University, Bloomington, where he played four years of football. He also did graduate work at Northern Illinois University, DeKalb. Ken taught physical education and coached eleven years in Batavia. He then taught twenty-three years at McHenry West High School, where he coached football and baseball. He was also a long-time ISHA official. He was avid Chicago sports fan, especially the White Sox; and he held Bears' season tickets since the early '70s. Summers included coaching and construction jobs plus camping with the family. After the children were "grown and gone," he and Marti traveled to forty-nine states with their dogs (and grandchildren sometimes) in their travel trailer. Goal destinations included many national parks and major league ballparks. During his twenty-two-plus years of retirement, Ken continued to officiate high school sports and to travel. He was active in retired teachers' activities including four years as president of the McHenry County Retired Teachers' association and four years as Regional Director for the Illinois Retired Teachers' Association. He also enjoyed chauffeuring for area funeral homes and participating in weekly cribbage clubs. Ken is survived by his wife of almost 59 years, their daughter Laurie (Rick) Bender of Crystal Lake, and his brother Kel (Judy) of Centennial, CO; his grandchildren Sara (Brian) Flanigan of Crystal Lake, Darcie (Noel) Hubber of Las Vegas, Jacob Swanson of Lemont, and Samantha (George) Lambert of Justin, TX; and great-grandchildren Kendrick and Charlie Flanigan and Georgie Lambert. Several cousins, nieces, and nephews also survive. He was preceded in death by his parents and his sons Rick in 2006 and Gary in 2010. Visitation will be Wednesday, March 13, from 4 to 8 PM at the Colonial Funeral Home, 591 Ridgeview Drive, McHenry, and beginning at 9 AM at the church on Thursday. Memorial services will be held at The Community Church of RIchmond, 5714 Broadway St., at 10 AM on Thursday, March 14, with the Rev. Hope Molozaiy officiating. Burial will follow at the Ringwood Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations in Ken's memory to the McHenry County Retired Teachers' Association (MCRTA) Scholarship Fund at 3507 James Way, Johnsburg, IL 60050. Funeral arrangements are pending with Colonial Funeral Home at 815-385-0063 or www.colonialmchenry.com.
Published in Chicago Suburban Daily Herald on Mar. 10, 2013
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