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A Wetzel and Son Obituary for:
Virginia Swedberg
May 8, 1929 - October 17, 2022

Public Events and Locations

Visitation - Saturday, October 29, 2022, 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM at Calvary Presbyterian Church, Willow Grove
Memorial Service - Saturday, October 29, 2022, 12:00 PM at Calvary Presbyterian Church, Willow Grove


Funeral Home - Wetzel and Son Funeral Home - 501 Easton Road, Willow Grove, PA 19090 - 215-659-0911 - Map
Clergy - Calvary Presbyterian Church - 405 North Easton Road, Willow Grove, PA 19090 - 215-659-0554 - Map
Donation - American Swedish Historical Museum - 1900 Pattison Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19145 - 215-389-1776 - Map

The following obituary was composed by Ginny’s family:

We celebrate the life of Virginia Ann Searle Swedberg, who died on Monday, October 17, 2022 in Southampton, PA. A woman of tremendous curiosity, vitality, and zest for life, Ginny died at 93 years of age but with a youthful spirit.

Virginia was born on May 8, 1929 in Morris, Minnesota, and grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, the daughter of Dorothy and granddaughter of her beloved Freda. She was preceded in death by not only her husband Paul Swedberg, but many beloved friends with whom we celebrate her reunion in heaven.

Virginia is survived by her two sons Paul Dean Swedberg, Jr., and Karl Erik Swedberg, their wives Debbi and Sara, and beloved grandchildren and great-grandchildren Jacob, Brandelyn, Benjamin, Dylan, Lucia, Ryan, Deanna, Jacob Jr., Avianna, and Alayna, who was born just a week before Virginia’s passing.

Virginia graduated from Omaha North High School in 1947 and University of Colorado College of Nursing soon thereafter. Virginia spent dear childhood hours helping out in Shorty’s gas station and singing in her beloved Salvation in Army congregation, young adult years in Chautauqua, New York, and Warren, Pennsylvania, and adult years in Willow Grove, where she and Paul raised their sons. She practiced nursing at Warren, Philadelphia (“Byberry”), and Norristown state mental hospitals.

Virginia loved music dearly. She played the piano, ukulele, guitar, clarinet, recorder, and autoharp and never gave up on her dream of learning the trumpet; she had hers cleaned and refurbished in her 93rd year. Virginia loved singing in church and local choirs in both English and Swedish and said she had some of her most transcendent experiences singing in oratorios.

Ginny gave the gifts of her enthusiasm, energy, and salesmanship for decades to the American Swedish Historical Museum in Philadelphia, where she served on the Women’s Auxiliary as a member and president and served on the Board of Governors. She led Swedish choirs, organized Lucia festivals, and cajoled friends and family, both Swedish and otherwise, to buy annual memberships. She was hard to say no to. In 2005, she received the Swedish Council of America’s Merit Award for her efforts.

Ginny made friends wherever she went. There is not enough room here to name the people whom she endeared herself to and who loved and supported her. Her dear friend Larry, who predeceased her by many decades, perhaps said it best in a postcard he sent her in October of 1995: “My dear Virginia, as life goes on, I become very lonely for the very best of the human species I know. I am lonely, therefore, for you. Please call. Long-lovingly, Larry.”

We will long love you, Virginia, Ginny, Mom, Farmor, Grandma.

Relatives and friends were invited to greet the family at Calvary Presbyterian Church at 405 N. Easton Road, Willow Grove, PA 19090, on Saturday, October 29, 2022, from 11:00 to noon. A memorial service took place at noon with a luncheon immediately following at the church. All were welcome.

The family welcomes donations in honor of Virginia’s life to the American Swedish Historical Museum, 1900 Pattison Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19145.

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