Patricia Ann Schwan
Patricia “Pat” Richardson Schwan, 94, Michigan, ND, was called home to the Lord, July 28, 2021.
Pat was born in Fairgrove, Michigan, Oct 30, 1926 to Ernest H. Richardson and Mary A. Mulvaney Richardson. She was born premature, a little less than 7 months gestation. Perhaps because of this she was a person with a strong instinct for survival and overcame many health issues throughout her life. Her father owned a hardware store but during the depression sold the store and began a career as a successful traveling salesman for auto part companies, moving the family to Bay City, Michigan but returning to Fairgrove approximately five years later.
Pat was a descendant of old Yankee stock from early 17th century Rhode Island on her father’s side but her mother Mary, was Irish-American, and Pat emphasized this Irish heritage, reflected in various ways. For example, she was a devout Catholic all her life, involved in church organizations and parish activities such as the Catholic Women’s Club. She was a dedicated wife and mother and the Irish value of strong family ties were important. She loved when her children gathered together for family celebrations.
Pat was a dedicated 4-H leader, a member of the Michigan Homemakers Club and very involved with the Nelson County Right to Life Organization, strongly defending the right to life of unborn children, perhaps because of her own premature birth.
In 1945 Pat joined a correspondence club called the Corey Club, sponsored by the Catholic magazine, St. Anthony’s Messenger, equivalent to today’s Facebook and Instagram. It was through this correspondence that she met her future husband, Simon Schwan, of Cando, ND, in 1946. From the beginning of their correspondence a romance blossomed and Pat and Simon were joined in matrimony at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Caro, Michigan, November 25, 1947, a marriage that has lasted to its 74th year!
Pat and Simon moved to Michigan, ND, in the fall of 1948, where they farmed and began their family that eventually numbered seven children. Pat and Simon lived on the family farm until 2020 when the exigency of health made a move to a skilled care facility inevitable. They were active members of St. Lawrence O’Toole Catholic Church, Michigan.
Pat was preceded in death by her parents, Ernest and Mary Richardson, her brother and sister-in-law, Ernie and Maxine Richardson and a son-in-law Michael Klawitter, her in-laws Denis & Barbara (Volk)Schwan, brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Vincent (Barbara) Schwan, Mary (Joe) Lauinger, Sister Barbara Marie Schwan OSF, Margaret (John) Brinster, Matilda Burkholder, Moncia (Mel) Nelson, David (Betty) Schwan, Al Schwan, Richard Schell.
She leaves behind her beloved husband, Simon, her seven children, Mary Pat Klawitter, Euclid, MN, Lucy (John) Hanninen, Grand Forks, Abbot Paul Mark, OCSO, Vina, CA, Victor (Jodi), Michigan, Roger (LaDonna), Michigan, Rita (Jeff) Mootz, Hillsboro, and Margaret (Tim) Bauer, Bemidji, MN. Pat will be greatly missed by her 14 grandchildren, 25 great-grandchildren, and 3 great-great-grandchildren, with another great-grandchild on the way, for a total of 50 immediate descendants! Along with Brother-in-law and sisters-in-law Bertha Schell, Maurice (Rosie)Schwan, Phyliss Rank, Frances Schwan, numerous nieces and nephews on both sides.
And in this day of blended families mention must be made of those others who experienced in Pat a loving, concerned, grandmother and great-grandmother even if not directly related.
The family is most grateful to the Nelson County Health Services Care Center, McVille, for the diligent, dedicated, generous care they showed our mother and us as we kept vigil at her bedside. Your kindness will be remembered.
The Funeral Mass will be held at St. Lawrence O’Toole Catholic Church, Michigan, ND, on Tuesday, August 3, 2021 at 10:30 a.m. Interment will be in the Michigan Cemetery. Visitation will be held at the Church on Monday, beginning at 5:00 p.m. with a Rosary & Vigil Service at 7:00 p.m. Visitation will continue at the Church on Tuesday, from 9:30 a.m. until the time of Mass.
In lieu of flowers the family respectfully requests giving to a favorite charity or to the Nelson County Right to Life or St. Gianna’s Maternity Home.
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