Charlene K Swanson
June 15, 1940 – December 30, 2021
Charlene graduated Lincoln Northeast High 1958, UNL Undergraduate 1962 (Bachelor of Science in Vocational Home Economics Education), UNL Master’s 1971 (Master of Science in Human Development and the Family).
Employment (from most recent): Swanson Delivery Service (Owner), Family Service/Head Start, St. Elizabeth’s Community Health Center, Bethphage in Omaha, Bethphage in Lincoln, David Place, Inc. in David City, NE, Monte Vista Head Start in Monte Vista, CO, The Daisy Patch in Monte Vista, CO (Owner), Lancaster Office of MR, State of NE Office of MR, York High School (NE), Wilber High School (NE), Elmwood High School (NE).
Charlene worked many years of her life with children, especially children with Special Needs and worked to make the best possible life for people with Special Needs.
If you were lucky enough to have met Charlene you knew you had a friend for life. She was a good friend to many of all generations.
Family was a top priority. Charlene was the family photographer. She always had her camera aimed at someone or someplace. When her brother-in-law was in the hospital it was Charlene that came with pictures of all the families. It made him happy until the end.
Charlene also kept the family genealogical record. She was proud that she had information and pictures going way back in the family history. She kept in touch with all the relatives in different states and cities and still made calls shortly before her passing.
In their younger, single days Charlene and her best friend Mary Straub (maiden name Rodgers) traveled to Colorado, Washington D.C., and Hawaii. When they went to Washington DC they drove and during the trip they memorized trivia facts like how many steps in the Washington Monument to make the time go by. Of course Charlene took pictures.
Charlene was a good cook and when she was in High School, she won the 4-H Cherry Pie Baking Contest. The family ate a lot of test pies before the contest and of course there were pictures. She was on the Lincoln Northeast High School reunion committee, and of course had old newspaper articles, concert programs and photos for nice displays.
After her father died Charlene became her mother’s constant companion. They went to garage sales, antique shops, haircuts and shopping. They even shared a booth in a couple antique Malls and had a booth at antique shows. Charlene was always on the lookout for nice collectibles with butterflies. Charlene sacrificed much of her time during those years but never complained. That’s who she was…a kind-hearted person, willing to be there for those in need.
Charlene was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2018 and moved to Havelock Manor where she met more friends and took more pictures, especially of Daisy the dog .
Preceded in death by father Clarence L. Swanson, mother Ruth Swanson. Survived by sister Sue Swanson Gloe, Nieces Shelly (Brian) Johnson (Waverly, NE), Sherry (Larry) Peterson (Springfield, MO), Dawn (Steve) Irlbeck (Omaha, NE). Great Nieces & Nephews, Dan Irlbeck, Jessica Irlbeck Burklund of Omaha, Veranda Johnson Storm Lake, Iowa, Bryce Johnson of San Antonio Texas, Adler Peterson, Springfield, MO. also best friends of over 50 years Mrs. Mary Straub and Mrs.DiAnn Frese.
Memorial Service St. Mark’s United Methodist Church (8550 Pioneers Blvd, Lincoln, NE), April 30 at 11 am. Lunch after service. Private burial. Memorials to family, donations to be determined.
To leave a condolence please use the form below.
Funeral Home assisting is Aspen Mortuary, 4822 Cleveland Avenue, Lincoln, NE 68504. To view an on-line obituary or email condolences please visit Aspen Mortuary’s website at www.aspenaftercare.com.
Condolences for Charlene K Swanson
Charlene was a very kind person. We used to sit together in church sometimes. I don’t believe I ever heard her say an unkind word about anyone. She was quick with a smile and a kind word. Her absence from this world will be felt by many. But there is great rejoicing in heaven!
My sister, Pat Kubes was good friends with Charlene though high school. She sends her condolences. Our parents were friends with her parents. We ate at Alice’s Restaurant in College View. I remember her father talking about the building of the cathedral. I remember Sue when I worked at Saint Elizabeth and how kind she was getting her father good things to eat when he was a patient there. Many good memories of her and her family.
I met Charlene in the early 80’s when we were both working at the Bethphage (now Mosaic) facility on Ninth and Sumner in Lincoln. Charlene was a great boss and colleague who combined professionalism with a genuine caring and a great sense of humor.
When I was residing in Lincoln, I knew that I could count on Charlene if something came up and I needed some help. Through subsequent years we were able to meet on a number of occasions for lunch or brunch with our mutual friend Cynthia, also a Bethphage colleague.
Many of the folks with significant disability, with whom Charlene worked, would be unable to write their thanks and gratitude. (Yes, I have a picture album of many of those folks, taken by Charlene!) On their behalf, and on my own, I express deep gratitude for all Charlene did for so many, for so long… “May her memory be a blessing!”
My condolences on your loss. Just wanted to say it warmed my heart to see that DAISY was a comfort to Charlene. I am the Human mom of Daisy and have booth of her parents and this makes us all so proud of her to know that she is doing a good job to those at Havelock Manor. Prayers to your family.
Charlene was a good friend of mine from grade school through high school. I am so sorry for your loss. I have a couple pictures I would like to send you if you’d like to send me your email address.
I first met Charlene when working at Bethphage Lincoln. We worked closely together for several years, even being the last two employees remaining once the Lincoln site closed. Charlene was an incredibly compassionate, supportive administrator and I always considered her a friend. A number of years ago, I had the opportunity to work with Charlene once again when we did visits to Lincoln area group homes for people with disabilities. Our purpose was to evaluate their quality of life. Charlene’s care and concern for this population was a great asset to the work we did. She made a difference in the lives of many and I will value our time together.
I met Charlene when she was teaching at York High School and my friend DiAnn Frese began teaching there. For several years after Char, DiAnn, Mary, and I spent time together whenever all of us were in Lincoln. She was a very talented person and great cook. I was saddened to learn of her passing, and I am sorryI cannot attend the services as I live in Fresno, California.
I was so sorry to hear of Ms. Swanson’s passing. She was my science & home economics teacher at Elwood, NE. I also got to work with her when I taught Head Start here in Lincoln. My sympathy goes out to her family & friends. She was a very kind person to know.