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Welcome to the memorial page for

Joseph R. Swarter

July 26, 2017

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Joseph R. Swarter, age 60, of Wilmington passed away suddenly on Wednesday, July 26, 2017.

Born in Wilmington, Joe was the son of Isabelle and the late Joseph P. Swarter. He was a graduate of Henry C. Conrad High School Class of 1974, and Wilmington University. As a teenager he began working side by side with his father and brothers at Custom Iron Shop, Inc. Joe and his brothers eventually took over to carry on the family business known for projects, including the Little Italy arch and the Wilmington Riverfront railings. As a friend said, “When I think of Joe Swarter, I immediately think of an honest, sincere, professional and detailed person with a wealth of stories.”

As an active member of ABC of Delaware, he was a former chairman and honored with the Adams Cup Award. He was a respected leader and mentor of the builders and contractors community. Family first, but his passion for ABC and its philosophy was ingrained within him.

In earlier years, he enjoyed playing football, baseball and softball. He continued this love of sports coaching and cheering on his sons as they played football and baseball. Joe also loved music and was so proud of his daughter’s singing talent, using every opportunity to encourage her to belt out her special songs, including her infamous rendition of “My Heart Will Go On.”

Family was the center of Joe’s world. His favorite times were spent relaxing at the drive-on beach at 3 R’s and spending time at their Ocean View beach house. Many memories will be cherished from their recent trip to Disney World with the entire family. His three grandchildren will miss their Grandpa Joe and his teasing, silly antics! Joe was known for his practical jokes and great sense of humor. He had an amazing smile, a big heart, and generous spirit, and he was always there to support anyone in need.

Joe is survived by his high school sweetheart and beloved wife of 37 years, Dorene F. (Doran) Swarter; his sons, Matthew J. (Jennifer) and Andrew C. Swarter; his daughter, Kaitlin F. Swarter; his mother, Isabelle Swarter; his brothers, Fred (Sandy) and Charles (Rhonda) Swarter; his sisters, Diane Saienni (Joe) and Cathy Loos (George); his three grandchildren, Tyler, Madelynn, and Jaxson Swarter; his mother-in-law, Faith Doran; his brother-in-law, Terry Doran; his sister-in-law, Karen Nowell (Randy); many nieces and nephews, and his beloved King Charles Spaniel, Vivy. He was predeceased by his father, Joseph P. Swarter, and his father-in-law, Patrick Doran.

Family and friends may visit on Saturday, July 29 from 9:30 to 11:30 AM at St. John the Beloved Church, 907 Milltown Rd., Wilmington, DE 19808, where a Mass of Christian Burial will begin at 11:30 AM. Interment will be private.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to St. John the Beloved Church or the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, 100 W. 10th St., Suite 209, Wilmington, DE 19801.

Charitable donations may be made to:

St. John the Beloved Parish
907 Milltown Road, Sherwood Park, Wilmington DE 19808
Tel: 1-302-999-0211

Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of DE
100 W. 10th Street, Suite 209, Wilmington DE 19801

 Service Information

July 29, 2017

9:30 AM to 11:30 AM
St. John the Beloved Church
907 Milltown Road, Sherwood Park
Wilmington, DE 19808

Mass of Christian Burial
July 29, 2017

11:30 AM
St. John the Beloved Church
907 Milltown Road, Sherwood Park
Wilmington, DE 19808

Private Interment

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