Leon M. Swendsen
Leon M. Swendsen of Rochester, MN passed away in his home on Monday, June 24, 2019, surrounded by his family. He was 104 1/2 years of age. Leon was born in Duluth on Nov. 11, 1914, to Victoria and William Swendsen. Early in Leon’s life, his father passed away and his mother married William’s brother, Otto, who became dad to Leon. Leon grew up on the family farm in Culver, MN, and worked with his parents at their butcher/meatmarket at the farm for many years. Leon was a fourth generation butcher. He was very proud of his Danish heritage. Because he had to leave high school early to help support his family, Leon was awarded a high school diploma later in life (at the age of 102). Leon drove for Greyhound Bus Lines out of Duluth MN for over 36 years, retiring with a clean driving record. Leon was a World War II veteran. He was proud of his military service and devoted to his country – flying the United States flag every day and never missing a Memorial Day or Veteran’s Day celebration. However, Leon’s biggest accomplishment was the love he gave his family. He had a truly kind and giving soul and made friends wherever he went. Leon is survived by his loving family: his wife Madalynne (the love of his life); sons’ Dennis (Jo), Scott (Katie), Kerry (Jennifer); and daughter Shelly. Grandchildren: Sarah, Peter, Jon, Cullen, Laurel, Erin, and Brandon. Great-grandchildren: Tori, Emma, Rose, and Jack. Many nieces, nephews and extended family. Leon donated his body to medical research through Mayo’s Anatomical Bequest Program. Funeral services will be held at a later date, with burial planned at Fort Snelling. An Open House and ‘Celebration of Life’ will be held at the VFW in Rochester on Sunday, August 4th from 11:00am – 3:00pm. All are welcome.