Don Elling Swensgard
77, of Massillon, OH, passed away peacefully, surrounded by his children on January 13th, 2021. He was born in Ballar, WA on February 1st, 1943.
Don was preceded in death by his parents Bill and Jean (Gallagher) Swensgard, his wife Jane, his infant sister Lana Gail and his infant brother Greggory Roy, and his brother Dennis Gene. He is survived by his four children Jill (Rod McCauley), Brett (Adrienne Spiezer) Swensgard, Kelly (Subrata Debnath), and Lynn (Jim Ryan); his eight grandchildren Avery, Zachary, Morgan, Abigail, Collin, Jack, Lauren, and Arrun; his two sisters Kareen (Glee Bratt) and Renae (Alan Anderson), his brother Jimmy (Gail) Swensgard; his sister in law Carol (Tom Meldrum), as well as many nieces and nephews.
Don spent his childhood growing up on a farm near Fort Benton, Montana. He graduated from Fort Benton High School in 1961 and after a year in construction work, enlisted in the Army in 1962. He was first stationed at Fort Sam Houston for training as a medic followed by service in New Jersey with rotations to Vietnam. While serving in New Jersey, he met his wife Jane Louise Simon. They married in October 1965 in Massillon, Ohio. They were married for 48 years before Jane passed in 2013. Don started his career as a salesman and spent the majority of his career in the heating and cooling industry. He eventually went on to own and serve as president of Eynon Brown, Inc. He taught his children the importance of working hard and being good at what you do, all the while imploring them at every step to use their brains and not their brawn to become successful. One of his proudest achievements was watching his four children attend and graduate from The Ohio State University. He often boasted to friends and family of their achievements after college, but was careful to keep their egos in check by reminding them often that he was still smarter. Don was an avid golfer and loved building and flying model airplanes. He spent many a summer day on the golf course or down at the flying field flying (and crashing!) his model airplanes. He and Jane enjoyed traveling, days spent on the lake, and they especially loved returning home to Montana to visit with family and friends for holidays, family weddings, and family reunions.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be given to Christ Lutheran Church, 3545 Amherst Ave. NW, Massillon, Ohio 44646 or the Timken Family Cancer Center through the Aultman Foundation (www.aultmanfoundation.org
). Due to the current pandemic, dates and times of services will be delayed until the Spring of 2021.