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DONALD GEORGE SWISTUN (DON)
Born: Jun 05, 1936
Date of Passing: Apr 26, 2021Send Flowers to the Family Offer Condolences or Memory
DONALD GEORGE SWISTUN
He was born to Helen and Peter Swistun at the Misericordia Hospital on June 5, 1936, the youngest of seven children. He was predeceased by his mother and father, his sister Kathleen (Michael) (Greg) Sawula, his brother William, sister Mary (John) (Patricia) Jasinowski, sister Etta (Len) Hayes and brother Mike; in-laws, Mary and William Broshuk, Steve and Raymond Broschuk and Larry Litke.
Left to mourn his passing are his loving wife of almost 63 years, Florence, his daughter Lori and son-in-law Mark Mirwaldt and his son Don. Don's greatest joy in his life was his family, nobody more important than his grandchildren and great-grandchildren: grandson Jordan and his wife Kristen, granddaughter Nichole, and grandson Dustin (Kayley). In the past few years we had two beautiful girls born to our family: Don's great-granddaughters, Ella and Avery Mirwaldt.
Don is also survived by his last remaining sibling and his wife, Henry and Shirley Swistun, and sister-in-law Lois Swistun. He will also be missed by in-laws, Elmer and Louella Broschuk, Marlene Litke and Shawna Rice. Don had a very large number of nieces and nephews, too many to mention, all that held a special place in his heart.
Don led an adventurous and fulfilling life, beginning with overcoming polio as a young boy. He went on to work on the family farm before beginning a sales career selling chainsaws, carpet and outboard motors. After a successful run in sales, he partnered with his brother Bill Swistun to start Birds Hill Gravel and Stone in 1964. He was well respected in the construction industry, and successfully ran Birds Hill Gravel for 44 years, providing many individuals with employment opportunities and lifelong careers. Don was one of the driving forces behind what is now known today as Silver Fox Estates, a housing development and park, recently renamed Swistun Family Heritage Park.
Don was an extremely friendly and outgoing man. He could be found regularly chatting with people wherever he went, be that in line at Superstore or the bank. As anyone who knew him can attest, he was the ultimate people person.
Don was a lifelong fan and supporter of sports. He enjoyed playing hockey and baseball as a kid. He went on to be his son's biggest fan and coach during Donnie's hockey career. Donnie's friends will all remember coach Don with fond memories. He was also an integral part of getting the project of the East St. Paul arena off the ground. Later in life, one of his greatest joys in life was following the education and sporting adventures of his grandchildren. No arena, court or pitch were too far for him and Florence to travel to. They loved doing this and Jordan and Nichole loved having them there.
Another big part of who Donald was - was his love of music. He played the fiddle in his younger years and guitar for most of his life. He didn't have any formal musical training and played music by ear. Wherever he was with his guitar, that is where the party was. Right till the end our husband, Dad and Papa enjoyed listening and singing along to his favourite tunes.
Don and Florence spent many vacations in Hawaii, Mexico, Texas, and Don's favourite, Las Vegas. They loved to travel with family and friends. Disney World with his grandkids in 1998 and in 2011 the entire family vacationed in Hawaii. This stoked his love of travel again and we went on to spend the next five winters in the family condo in Fort Myers, Florida. So many wonderful memories were made on these trips. We have the pictures to prove it.
Unfortunately, failing health ended the travel, but we are so lucky to have had these times.
Don and Florence moved into Concordia Village three years ago. There they reacquainted with old East St. Paul friends and made plenty of new ones. The family would like to thank the employees of Concordia Village and the home care staff that took wonderful care of Don over the last three years. Dr. David Martin and Dr. John Rabson were his doctors over the years, they helped him to maintain good health inspite of living with extensive heart disease. We are so grateful for their care.
Don's last two weeks were spent at the Riverview Health Centre where he received exceptional care from the doctors, nurses and health care aides. Thank you all for your kindness.
Although we knew we could not keep him with us any longer, we are going to miss the wonderful person that was our husband, father, papa and friend.
In lieu of flowers, the family respectfully requests that donations be made to the Riverview Health Centre, or the Heart & Stroke Foundation.
Memorial Service is on Tuesday, May 4, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. available by livestream - http://www.livememorialservices.com/Home/ServiceDetail/12867
As published in Winnipeg Free Press on May 01, 2021
Condolences & Memories (16 entries)
Dave and I were saddened to hear of Don's passing. He was truly a wonderful man with such a great sense of humor and such a zest for life. We will fondly remember the good times we had with the two of you. Don was one of a kind. - Posted by: dave and Goni Barrett (friend) on: May 18, 2021
Dear Auntie Florence, Lorie and Don. On behalf of the Hopkins family I’d like to send our sincere condolences on the passing of Uncle Donald. So many great memories of our family get-togethers on Hoddinott Road. I’ll never forget when Uncle Donald gifted me his old guitar and I strummed and sang all the way home. I so enjoyed our visits later in life but unfortunately they were not often enough. Sending much love to the Swistun family. - Posted by: Perry Hopkins (Friends) on: May 16, 2021
Dear Florence, Lorie and Don, from the "Saskatchewan Relative". I wish to express my sincere condolences. May the many memories that you share of a life well lived, give you comfort. I remember the many Christmas or Easter Holiday celebrations at Uncle Joe's farm. The late night card games, and the 15-2, 15-4, counts as the men played game after game of cribbage. Take Care. - Posted by: Paulette Wolkowski (Cousin) on: May 08, 2021
Our sincere condolences Flo, Lori and families. It is always so hard to say goodbye to loved ones. I had the privilege of watching the livestreamed service and it was a wonderful service and a warm sendoff. Sincerely Paul & Jackie Blonski - Posted by: Jackie & Paul Blonski (Attended Bird's Hill United Church) on: May 04, 2021
To the Don Swistun Sr, family and friends. The Tom Lester Family has known the family and friends of Don Swistun, Sr since we moved to East St. Paul area in September 1971. Don was a special kind man in the community of East St. Paul. He will be missed by family and friends and the special memories are worth remembering. Condolences, Prayers, and Rest In Peace, the Tom Lester family, Alice, Dan, Lisa, and Curtis. Respectfully - Dan Lester - Posted by: Dan Lester (community friend & business friend & family) on: May 04, 2021
Sincere condolences to the Swistun-Mirwaldt family. Вічна Йому пам'ять! - Posted by: Nick & Natalia Krawetz (Family Friends) on: May 04, 2021
Dear Florence and family, we were so saddened to hear of Don's passing. Don was known in the Derhak family as the one who was always smiling, laughing and had a funny story to tell. He always had that mischievous 'twinkle' in his eyes, and a warm handshake. He will surely be missed. Randy, Carol and family - Posted by: Carol and Randy Derhak (Cousin) on: May 04, 2021
MY DEEPEST CONDOLENCES TO SWISTUN FAMILY. I MET DON THROUGH A FRIEND ABOUT 15 OR 20 YEARS AGO, WE HAD SOME GREAT TIMES BUT OUR BEST WAS THE TRIPS TO SOUTH BEACH CASINO FOR SUPPER AND MEET UP WITH ERNIE AND NORA. AFTER SUPPER WE WOULD GO TO THEIR PLACE AND PLAY CARDS FOR HOURS AND THEN AFTER LUNCH WE HAD TO DRIVE HOME AND WATCH FOR DEER ON THE ROAD. I WILL ALWAYS CHERISH THE MEMORIES THAT SHIRLEY AND I HAD WITH DON AND FLORENCE. MAY YOU REST IN PEACE MY FRIEND TILL WE NEET AGAIN. YOUR FRIEND GENO - Posted by: GENE HNATUK (FRIEND) on: May 04, 2021
Our condolences go out to you Florence and family - so sorry to hear of Don’s passing, Raynard & Judy Wahl & family - Posted by: Raynard and Judy Wahl (Friends) on: May 03, 2021
We are so sad to hear of Don's passing. We had so many great times playing cards and sharing stories at Don and Florence's home. We really enjoyed your great sense of humor and you will be missed by many family and friends that had the privilege of enjoying your company. Sending your family much love and hugs. Dan and Gail Kluk - Posted by: Gail and Dan Kluk (Friend) on: May 02, 2021
Our sincere sympathy on the passing of your dear husband, father, grandfather and so much more. He always had a twinkle in his eye and we will remember all the many times we shared with all you as our children grew up. April and Bill (Cassandra and Emily) - Posted by: April Kalyniuk (Friend) on: May 02, 2021
Our deepest condolences to the family. We were lucky to have shared some wonderful times with Florence and Don, card games, singing, dancing, eating, chatting and Don usually had a story to share that always ended with lots of laughter and cheers. We know during these difficult times this family will be rich in treasured memories that will last forever. Don and Florence generously shared their time, kindness and laughter with many, we are glad we got to know him. - Posted by: Andrew & Susie Zbrog (friend) on: May 01, 2021
What wonderful times we had from going out for Chinese food, playing rummoli with 'the group' around the kitchen table, to sitting in a pub in Hawaii listening to Don playing and singing with the band (who loaned him a guitar), and everyone lying on the beach in Puerto Vallarto. We will never forget. My sincere condolences Florence, Donnie and Laurie. He was a wonderful man. - Posted by: Marilyn Chubey (Friend) on: May 01, 2021
Sincerest sympathy to Lori and family on the recent passing of your dear dad. Thinking of you and all your family. Norma - Posted by: Norma Einarson (HSC collegue) on: May 01, 2021
Heartfelt condolences and thoughts go out from the "late" Jim and Shirley Lester family. As a family, we have such fond memories with Don and Florence and the family. My mother Shirley recalls many great laughs and journeys. The vacation trip to Palm Springs in the big town car to vacationing in Hawaii and stealing a Pineapple out of the fields for Don and Florence to eat before leaving Hawaii. Many great times. As for myself, I recall Mr. Swistun and my father flooding the ice at East St Paul all night long while playing crib and having few cocktails. I'd snowmobile down there and to see them all I would hear 15-2,15-4, a Pair, etc. They were having a ball, great buddies. Many great memories. He touched many people through out his wonderful life and we will miss him and remember his kind spirit. - Posted by: Jeff Lester (long time friend of Jim/Shirley lester family) on: May 01, 2021
A wonderful man, and a wonderful family. Remember 6 years ago...Don dancing at Ricky's 50th birthday party...then he followed it up with guitar playing and singing at Donny's 50th, the whole family joined in. Those memories will stay with us forever. Our hearts are with you all. Rick & Jaye xoxo - Posted by: Rick & Jaye (Family friend) on: May 01, 2021
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