Earl Edward Swart

Earl Edward Swart

A photo of Earl Edward Swart About Earl Edward Swart: The footprints we leave behind. August 28, 2011 at 7:28pm by Lu Swart Written for Dad at his funeral 8:45 a.m. on 8/30/2011 The path stretched ... show more

A photo of Earl Edward Swart

About Earl Edward Swart

The footprints we leave behind. August 28, 2011 at 7:28pm by Lu Swart Written for Dad at his funeral 8:45 a.m. on 8/30/2011 The path stretched before me going in and out of the trees. I walked along and noticed in some places my footprints were deep, clear and easily defined and in others the imprint was just a faint smudge. It made me think of Dad (Earl's) life. We travel through life leaving footprints on the life path of others, sometimes these are deep imprints, well-defined and lasting. Others are just a brief interruption in the sand of another's life fleeting and faint. It is not just the traveler's substance that determines if the footsteps are lasting or a faint imprint. It is also decided by the soil or life path of the individual whom the traveler comes in contact with. If the soil is soft, rich and prepared the footprint will be deep and well-defined. If the soil is shallow, hard or rocky, then no matter what the substance of the traveler is, the life path will not accept a deeper, well-defined impression in that life path. The deep imprint that Dad left on our hearts and lives will bless our life paths for all eternity. We remember his goodness, caring, laughter and jokes. A caring attitude was the focus of his life. Each time I met Dad, he was taking care of someone. We often stopped to see him when we were driving truck cross country. One day we took Dad and Mildred out for dinner. A lady came up to our table and Dad introduced her to us. I asked her if she was one of their neighbors? She said no, that she knew Dad because he would visit her home-bound mother to give her perms and style her hair. She said that if her mom could not pay then Dad would tell her it was okay. She could fix dinner for him the next week. Then she said, the funny thing is my Mom could not fix a meal anymore to save her life, Earl just does that so my Mom won't feel like she is getting charity. He was a Certified Cosmetologist, Barber and hair stylist and in Phoenix for at least 10 years. Dad helped quite a few home-bound people in this way. Dad helped other people by giving them home care. His ex-wife's family was helped numerous times. Dad helped Mildred's son and sister before they died and took care of Mildred on a daily and nightly basis right up until his stroke. Dad had worked in many different occupations - starting with being a farmer in North Dakota. He served as a cook in the Army in the Korean era. He was honorably discharged with a medical disability. He was a truck driver, mill hand, security guard, certified welder, accident investigator and claims adjuster and business owner. He attended college in Texas 72-74, then went on to be a full-time student and part-time teacher at Northland Pioneer College in Winslow, A.Z. He taught the Art 165 Lapidary. His students sent requests for him to continue teaching for the next 2 years. Each teaching session was for 15 weeks. Dad taught them how to correctly identify rocks and minerals. The proper method of cutting, shaping, grinding and polishing stones including opal, the proper selection of the finished stones for mounting and also the art of Indian jewelry making with turquoise. Many people found Earl willing and able to teach them from his Lapidary shop. We found letters from Texas, Colorado, and Arizona thanking him for taking them on various field trips and teaching them the skills needed to pursue this as a hobby and as a business. Dad loved fishing and being independent. He loved building things and found a quiet joy in making little treasures, jewelery, lamps, pendants, cutting boards, belt buckles, bolo ties, clocks, and even fish hooks. Our home has been blessed over the years by these treasures Dad made us for Christmas or birthday gifts. We went on several trips with Dad and loved his humor and his jokes. Dad was only a phone call away - but you had to make the call. He loved spending time with loved ones, but seldom made the trip to see them. He always had people and animals he was taking care of. Short trips for the day were the best and bring a fishing pole. We are gathered here to honor Earl Edward Swart for all he was as a Korean Era Veteran, beloved family member and a friend. Dad was born in Wells County near Heaton, N.D. He lived a very full life and has gone on. Death unlocks the passage way into eternity, and as Dad traveled down that passageway he would have been greeted on the other side by many loved ones who proceeded him - his granddaughter, Mildred Rose; son, Anthony; daughter, Lynn; and daughter-in-law, Pam; brothers, Royal and Frank; and his sister, Agnes; as well as his parents, Ralph and Dorothy. Earl is survived by his sister, Myrtle (Bill); brother, Charlie (Opal); son and daughter-in-laws: John (Karla) of Great Falls, Montana; Terry (Shelley) of Belgrade, Montana; Dennis (Lu) of Newport, Oregon; James of Bremerton, Washington; Grandchildren: Tina, Shawn, Nickki, Mandy, Nathan, Theodore, Johnathan, Joseph, Brandy and Kimberly along with great grandchildren and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins. Dad never had much money, but he gave something of even more value - his time. May we always remember the ways that Dad blessed our lives and may we go forward in our life paths & bless others as we travel on in life's journey, so that our footprints will be left deep and well-defined as we help others by lifting their burdens in their life journey. When it is our time to make the death passage to eternity, we will leave deep, well-defined, loving footprints in the lives of those whose life paths we cross that their lives will be improved by our actions and we can return with honor to our Heavenly Father. Song Lord, I Would Follow Thee ...more about Earl Edward Swart

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