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Paul Oliver Swenumson, 88

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Paul Oliver Swenumson, age 88 of New Hampton, died Friday Sept. 22, 2023, at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

Funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023, at Saude Lutheran Church, rural Lawler, with Pastor Peter Faugstad presiding.

Interment will follow at the church cemetery with lunch served by the Ladies Aid.

Friends may greet the family from 4 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2023, at Hugeback-Johnson Funeral Home & Crematory in New Hampton. Visitation continues an hour prior to the service on Wednesday at the church.

Paul was born on April 13, 1935, on a farm north of Lawler to parents Thomas and Myrtle (Young) Swenumson.

Paul’s educational journey began at Saude Christian Day School, and he later graduated from New Hampton High School in 1956.

Following his graduation, Paul answered the call of duty and enlisted in the U.S. Army, where he served for two years, stationed in Colorado.

In the course of his life’s journey, Paul met the love of his life, Gretchen Fisher, through mutual friends. Their bond grew stronger, and they were united in marriage on Jan. 14, 1961 in Albert Lea. Together, Paul and Gretchen established their home in the New Hampton area, raising two daughters.

For over three decades, Paul dedicated his professional life to John Deere in Waterloo, where he honed his skills as a machinist. His loyalty to the John Deere brand was unwavering, and he treasured the camaraderie he shared with his fellow employees.

Outside of work, Paul was a man of many interests. He thrived on keeping busy, whether tinkering in his barn or searching for hidden treasures at Saturday morning auctions. Golf was a passion he indulged in, both playing and watching, and he had a special place in his heart for the Dodgers, Chicago Cubs, Minnesota Vikings and Iowa Hawkeyes.

Paul enjoyed playing cards, whether gathered at a friend’s house or their favorite local tavern. His love for cards extended to blackjack which he enjoyed playing on his occasional trips to the casino.

But his greatest joy was his devotion to the Lord and the love he had for his family.

Paul is survived by his wife, Gretchen of New Hampton; two daughters and their spouses, Diane (Curt Johnson) Utley of New Hampton, and Caroline (Troy) Rodden of Waterloo; three grandchildren, Colton Utley, Jordan Rodden and Christian Rodden; two brothers, David Swenumson of Ionia and Jon Swenumson of Livingston, Montana; brothers-in-law, Richard Fisher, New Hartford and Reardon (Jill) Fisher of Cedar Falls; life-long family friend, Carl Berst of Washington; along with numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; a sister Mildred in infancy, and sister Beaulah Haedt in 1998, father and mother in-law Thomas and Edith Fisher, sisters-in-law, Jeanne Swenumson, Donnalee Swenumson and Portia Hermansen, and two nephews Troy Hermansen and Michael Fisher.

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