Wilbur (Wil) Lee Swart
Wilbur (Wil) Lee Swart

March 11, 1930 - July 13, 2015
Born in Dodge City, Kansas
Resided in Evergreen, CO
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Obituary

Wilbur (Wil) Lee Swart, formerly of Evergreen, died from natural causes on July 13, 2015 in Lakewood, CO. He was 85 years young.

Wil was born on March 11, 1930 to Fred and Lillian Swart in Dodge City, KS. During his early years he developed an aspiration to pursue a career in the military and attended Wentworth Military Academy with the goal of being accepted to West Point. His dreams of the military were dashed when he lost his left eye in an accident at Wentworth. He returned to Dodge City where he attended and graduated from Dodge City High School.

He fell in love with Colorado while spending summers in the Colorado Springs area during childhood and attended college at the University of Colorado, Boulder. He was a member of the ATO fraternity and graduated with a degree in Arts & Science. Following graduation he embarked on a career as an insurance broker in the Denver area.

Shortly after graduation Wil met the love of his life, Sue Argall. They were married on May 21, 1955 and spent the majority of their married life in Evergreen with their three children. Wil was known as a devoted husband and father and a loyal friend by everyone who knew him. Besides his primary employment, he and Sue owned the Olde West Emporium in Dodge City for several years where the family enjoyed working during the summer.

After holding positions with several insurance firms in the Denver area, Wil founded three companies of his own: Swart & Co., Transglobal Insurance Corp. and the International Monovision Assn. The latter two allowed him to work with his children on insurance products he felt passionate about.

Beyond his family and career, Wil was involved in many activities. Following in his father's footsteps, he became a long-time Rotarian, served as president of the Evergreen Rotary club from 1992-93, and helped to establish the Conifer and Mountain Foothills Rotary clubs. He served on the board of directors of the Denver Athletic Club. As a man of faith, he was a member of the trustee board which oversaw the formation of the Church of the Transfiguration in Evergreen and was also instrumental in forming the Church of the Apostles, also in Evergreen.

Due in part to his own disability, Wil was always interested in causes which helped others to overcome their particular disabilities. The mission of the International Monovision Assn. was to provide support and insurance against total vision loss to monocular individuals. He was involved with establishing Crutches 4 Africa as one of the charity relationships of the Mountain Foothills Rotary club, which provides mobility devices to African people in need.

He was interested in antiques and spent uncounted hours researching patents for his patent-dated collection of 19th century household items. He enjoyed fly fishing, hiking and trailer camping with his family. Having grown up in the "old west" town of Dodge City, he was keenly interested in western memorabilia and native american artifacts.

Wil's interest in Dodge City and western memorabilia intersected when he discovered an old photo of the Original Cow Boy Band of Dodge City, KS. As he researched this historic band he learned that after disbanding in Dodge City in the late 1800s, it had been re-formed two or three times in various Colorado mountain towns, eventually making its final appearance in Idaho Springs and playing a concert for Memorial Day (then called Decoration Day) in 1905. Wil organized a modern-day re-forming of the band with volunteer musicians from the front range to play a concert in Idaho Springs on Memorial Day 2005, and the band has been performing steadily ever since. Wil played alto horn in the band for several years, and at one point three generations of the Swart family were members of the band: Wil, his son-in-law Russ, and one of his grandchildren Emily.

Wil was preceded in death by his wife Sue and is survived by children Brian (wife Susan, children Andrew, Matthew and Claire), Blair and Brynne (husband Russ, children Emily and Amanda). A memorial service and interment will be held on August 15, 2015 at 10:00 AM at the Church of the Transfiguration, 27640 CO 74, Evergreen, Colorado with reception following.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made in Wil's name to:

Crutches 4 Africa
donate online at crutches4africa.org

or

Original Cow Boy Band
C/O Russ Jorgensen
P.O. Box 1041
Golden, CO 80402

Please share your memories of Wil and condolences with his family by signing the guest book below.

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Services

Service
Church of the Transfiguration
27640 CO 74
Evergreen, CO
Saturday, August 15, 2015
10:00 AM

Charities

Crutches 4 Africa
Original Cow Boy Band
P.O. Box 1041
Golden, CO 80402
C/O Russ Jorgensen