George Joseph Swenka, 94, of North Liberty, died Thursday, Aug. 11, 2011 at the Solon Nursing Care Center. Services were held at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 16, at First Presbyterian Church near Ely. Burial was at Oakland Cemetery in Iowa City. Visitation was Monday at Brosh Chapel in Solon.
George was born Sept. 10, 1916, in rural Shueyville, the son of George and Tena (Michalek) Swenka. He and his parents moved from Shueyville to rural Oxford in 1923. He graduated from Shueyville High School in 1933. George married Marie Elsie Slaby on Jan. 8, 1942, at the First Presbyterian Church near Ely. George and Marie established their home on the family farm west of North Liberty in 1942, where they farmed for 55 years.
George loved the farm and the land. He was a conservationist. He practiced crop rotation and tried to leave the land in better condition than he found it. He was interested in good livestock. George was a purebred Angus breeder for over 50 years; in 1960, he and his son, George Vernon, established the Double G Angus Farm.
George was also involved in his community. He served as Madison Township Clerk for 20 years, Madison Township School Secretary for a number of years, and as a Director on the Clear Creek School Board for two terms. George was a Director on the Board of the Bohemian Farmers Mutual Insurance Association for 27 years. George was a life-long member of the First Presbyterian Church near Ely and the Hus Memorial Presbyterian Church in Cedar Rapids. He served as a Ruling Elder on the Session and on various committees in both churches.
George is survived by his son, George Vernon (Mary Kay) Swenka of Tiffin; daughters, Jean (Kenneth) Kintzel of La Crosse, Wis., and Beverly (Dick) Snakenberg of Tiffin; one sister, Esther Viksten of Iowa City; eight grandchildren, Kimberly (Emanuel) Lindo of Harvard, Mass., Kelly (Eric) Manahan of Dalton, Ga., Kristin (Joseph) Kopczynski of Naperville, Ill., George Stephen (Amanda) Swenka of Tiffin, Suzanne (Theodore) Barker of North Liberty, Gina (Nathan) Holler of Denver, Colo., Mark Zimmerman (Erica) of Cedar Rapids, and Shaun Zimmerman of Chicago, Ill.; seven great grandsons, George Jacob and William Swenka, Brandon and Andrew Barker, Kyle and Jack Kopczynski, and Evan Holler; eight great granddaughters, Kaylie, Haidyn, and Kira Barker, Elsie Kopczynski, Paige and Lindsay Manahan, Olivia Lindo, Lydia Holler, and soon-to-be baby Holler.
George was preceded in death by his beloved wife of 66 years, Marie Elsie Swenka, his parents, George and Tena Swenka, one sister, Tillie (Frank) Palik, and a brother-in-law Ray Viksten.
George was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. He took great pride in his family, farm and church, all which were very important parts of his life.
Memorials may be directed to the First Presbyterian Church near Ely or Hus Memorial Presbyterian Church in Cedar Rapids.
Online condolences may be expressed to the family at www.broshchapel.com .