Donald Leroy Swarens, age 82, of Hume, Mo., died Sunday, Oct. 7, 2007, at Nevada Regional Medical Center in Nevada. He was born April 29, 1925, to George Lewis and Nellie Eveline Garrison Swarens, in Ovid, Mo.
Donald, the oldest of five children, grew up in the rural communities of Rich Hill and Foster, Mo., and attended grade school in Rich Hill. Donald proudly served his country as a Corporal in the United States Army Air Corps. Upon his discharge, he returned home and graduated from Rich Hill High School in 1947.
On July 4, 1951, he was united in marriage to Wilma Duffield in Rich Hill and to this union six children were born. Donald took a position with General Motors Corporation on the assembly line working at the Leeds Plant, in Kansas City, Mo., retiring in 1997 after 35 years of faithful service. He was a member of the United Auto Workers Local 93, in Kansas City. Donald was a member of the Foster Christian Church and attended the Worland Baptist Church.
Donald was a man of few words, slow to anger and made his family a priority. Sundays were his favorite time because the kids were all home. He did have an ornery and mischievous side to him and was always up for a good joke or prank. His many years of service at General Motors fostered a strong loyalty to GMC -- the only vehicles that he would own. Westerns, old war movies and John Wayne classics were his favorite television shows. Donald's children can remember him saying, "Ya don't need to hurry off!" each and every time they would head home.
Donald is survived by his wife of 56 years, Wilma Swarens, of Hume; one son, Shane Swarens and wife Melissa, of Hume; five daughters, Kathy Hester and husband Leon, of Hume, Cheryl Gillette and husband William and Patti Olmstead, both of Nevada, Pamela Swarens, of Hume, and Gayla Swarens of, Lamar, Mo.; one brother, Bill Swarens and wife Rita of Chino Valley, Ariz,; one sister, Mary Judy, of Hume; an uncle, Delbert Swarens and wife Joan, of Rich Hill; 16 grandchildren, Michael McCulley and wife Sherry, Ginger Goucher, Amy Staton, Amber Staton, Glen Gillette and wife Leslie, Gloria Turner and husband Mark, Elisabeth Swopes and husband Beau, Seth Olmstead, Amanda Janes and husband Derek, Adam Swarens, Tyler Swarens, Robbie Sullins and wife Jacinda, Heather Sullins, Ashley Engle, Randy Engle and Angela Grable and husband Matt; 14 great-grandchildren, Kennedy, Ian and Kaycie Goucher, Wade, Cheryl Ann and Samantha McCulley, Brock, Brett and Bree Turner, Dayton Olson, Tristan, Landin and Maddix, James and MacKenzie Sullins; numerous nephews, nieces, cousins, other relatives and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Wayne Swarens; sister, Nornia Thompson; nephew, Larry Thompson; niece, Sandy Tolan; four grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.
Funeral services were 2 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 10, at the Christian Church in Hume, with minister Ed Sneed officiating and Fred Bisby assisting; burial in Salem Cemetery, Foster, Mo.
Contributions made by the Hume Baptist Church Food Pantry. Services are under the direction of Schowengerdt Funeral Chapel (660)-679-6555 in Butler, Mo.