Family man's efforts improved community life
Bill Swope's vast knowledge and unfailing reliability made him the “go-to guy” in his family, according to his children.
“He was my Internet before there was Internet,” John Swope said of his father. “If I needed to know anything about anything, I'd make a call. Whether I was trying to fix my dryer or bend a piece of metal — anything — he was just really knowledgeable.”
“I always relied on him,” said his daughter Sharon Decesere.
William W. Swope of North Huntingdon died on Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2014. He was 79.
Mr. Swope was a key figure in the early development of the Police Athletic League of North Huntingdon, which was founded in 1958. He served as a league board member and president, coached baseball and basketball teams and helped build the baseball and softball fields in the Shafton complex.
“He and a group of men basically built those fields from the swampy, awful dirt that was down in that area and the sludge from the little creek,” Decesere recalled. “Now it's a complex that hundreds of kids use.”
Mr. Swope worked as a quality control engineer for Nuclear Automation until his retirement. His community involvement included membership in First United Methodist Church in Irwin, Shidle Lodge, No. 601 of the Free and Accepted Masons in Irwin and the Keystone Champs camping club.
He cherished time spent with his family, especially when all of his children and grandchildren were together, his daughter Sharon said.
“He just loved being with all of our families together,” Decesere said. “He loved when we started having the kids and grandkids. He was very much a family guy.”
“I've never heard anybody have a cross word to say about my dad. Never,” John Swope said. “He was just a sweet-hearted guy. He's a lost breed.”
His father was a devoted husband and loving father and grandfather, an “all-around good guy” and an animal lover, he said.
Mr. Swope is survived by his wife of more than 60 years, Norma Jean (Lindgren) Swope; three daughters, Sharon Decesere and husband, Richard, of North Huntingdon, Randi Wichrowski and husband, David, of Hempfield, and Lori Swope of North Huntingdon; a son, John C. Swope of Irwin; and five grandchildren.
Friends were received Friday in William Snyder Funeral Home, 521 Main St., Irwin, where a funeral service will be held at noon on Saturday. Interment will follow in Penn Lincoln Memorial Park.
Donations in Mr. Swope's memory may be made to a charity of choice.
Greg Reinbold is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-459-6100, ext. 2913 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Steelers not limiting themselves in free agency
- Duquesne University football player died by suicide
- Pirates notebook: Sadler gets first Grapefruit start
- Winter storm causes flight cancellations
- Icy roads cause multiple vehicle accidents Sunday evening
- Rossi: Pirates must pay for Mr. Right
- Pitt women end regular season with win over Clemson
- National Weather Service predicts up to 7 inches of snow before Sunday night
- Arrogant media elites mock Middle America
- Vehicle windows broken in Brighton Heights and Spring Garden
- Coyotes proliferate despite year-round hunting