Carol Swift, 78 of rural Henning, Minnesota died Monday, August 30, 2021, at Country Living Foster Home.
Carol Jean Swift was born on April 21, 1943, in Littlefork, Minnesota to Erik and Evelyn (Riedler) Carlson- she was the 4th of 7 Carlson children-she and her younger siblings were adopted out when she was 5-Carol and her sister Evelyn (4) were adopted by Clarence and Carried (Oxster) Johnson, and were raised with their brother, Clarence Johnson Jr. in Forest Lake, Minnesota. She was confirmed in the Lutheran Faith and graduated from Forest Lake High School in 1961. Although she was separated at an early age from some of her biological siblings- she kept in touch with them through the years and has been close with them and their families as an adult.
After high school Carol started working at Montgomery Wards in St. Paul where she fulfilled catalog orders in the giant warehouse by cruising around on roller skates. On December 10, 1961, Carol married Jerry Swift and lived in the Twin Cities area prior to moving to Battle Lake in 1977. Carol spent a lot of time with her parents, aunts and uncles, and siblings at Eagle Lake, and attended Eagle Lake Lutheran Church. Carol stayed home until all her kids were in school- but she loved working outside the home as a seamstress, and later as a CNA with Pelican Lake Nursing Home in Ashby. Carol and Jerry divorced, and she remained in the Battle Lake and Ashby area until 1988 when she returned to St. Paul and worked at Lyngblomsten Senior Care Center. She then started her favorite career as a phlebotomist by joining the American Red Cross. While at the Red Cross she worked with a traveling crew drawing blood for the blood banks. She was known as one of the “best stickers” and RN’s would call for Carol’s help to stick the hard-to-find veins. She made many good friends at the Red Cross and enjoyed traveling with them for work, and on vacations. She and Jerry remained good friends after their divorce and traveled by train together to visit son Jade, Jeannie and grandchildren in Washington State. After her retirement from the Red Cross she moved to San Antonio, Texas where she built a home- she stayed there for a couple years, but she missed her family and moved back to Minnesota, making her home in Underwood. Carol enjoyed spending time with her kids, grandchildren, and especially her great grandchildren. Children were her joy. She was a born caregiver and always had a dog or two, and a cat as adored companions. She especially enjoyed the cats at her last place of residence at Country Living- where she wanted to hog all their attention and time! Country Living provided loving care to Carol in her last years, and she was a sassy lady with her caregivers Karlene & Mark, Kaylana, Penny, Debbie, Renee, Ginger, and her adorable little friend, Ashlyn. Much appreciation to them, and to Knute Nelson Hospice Care staff for their assistance over the last six months.
Her hobbies included flower and vegetable gardening, canning, as well as home improvement projects. She loved rearranging her furniture and rooms often- and would even take-out or put-in a wall here and there on her own. Carol had an independent spirit and loved driving her car, and doing what she wanted to do- when she wanted to do it- all done with her sense of humor.
She is survived by her three children; Jade Swift of Fergus Falls, Terry Swift of St. Cloud and Dana Jean (Mark) Horlocker of Duluth; five grandchildren, Michael Swift, Nikki (John) Kugler, Tiffany (Dean) Saurer, Nicholas Horlocker and Joshua (Halli) Horlocker; six great-grandchildren, Emma, Jayden and Leia Saurer, Austin and Charlee Kugler; and Luella Horlocker; Four siblings, Jim Carlson, Clarence Johnson Jr. (Judy), Margaret Blumer (Claude) and Ruby Radford (Tom); and by numerous nephews, nieces, cousins, and friends. She is also survived by her best friends of many years, Donna & Fred Orme.
Carol was preceded in death by her beloved daughter-in-law Jeannie Swift; former husband, Jerry Swift; Three sisters, Vivian Sande, Donna Woodbridge, and Evelyn Anderson; her parents Clarence and Carrie Johnson; nieces Debra Blumer and Jean Snider-Gros; and great nephew, Spencer Sande. There will be a Celebration of Life for Carol at Shoreline Restaurant in Battle Lake on September 18th starting at 1:00 p.m.
Inurnment: Grue Cemetery of rural Ashby.
Funeral Home: Glende-Nilson of Battle Lake.
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