Robert John "Bob" Swantak, born January 29, 1950 in Philadelphia, PA, passed away May 1, 2008 in a kayaking accident on the Connecticut River. He was born to Robert Andrew Swantak and Helen Marie Wright Swantak.
He was survived by his wife and business partner Holly Young; his brothers, Michael and Andrew Swantak; three children, Barbara Swantak, James Swantak and John Swantak; a stepson, Ian Crawford; and two grandchildren - Caleb and Caitlyn Swantak.
He served for four years in the Navy during the Vietnam years.
Any human is more than the simple facts, and that is never more evident when speaking of Bob Swantak. Bob loved and he was loved. The caveat that he was not a perfect man even seems a little silly in speaking of him. He'd be the first to point out that a human being is nearly always perfectly Self. Certainly Bob behaved in a way that tended to be true to soul, for Bob was a deeply spiritual man. He did a great deal of teaching and healing work for the American Society of Dowsers and was best known for his "Quiet Knowing" lectures.
Bob loved growth and creation. He made his living making beautiful jewelry with River Spirit Designs for the past twenty years. He became widely known and respected in the crafting community as a member of Vermont Handcrafters. He loved gardening and the flowers surrounded his home in the summertime. He especially loved Irises, the flowers of the spiritual realm.
His love of growth and creation was never more apparent than his love of his children and grandchildren. Free time often found him at the river side with his family - skipping stones, playing with the children, laughing at antics, and teaching them things both big and small.
He loved nature in general, and the Upper Valley in particular, once commenting that "There's something about these mountains that reach out and take you in." He loved rivers, seeing his wife in many ways as its spirit. Being out on a river, exploring its mysteries, and sharing them with his family and loved ones was a great joy to him.
While his love of kayaking and the river may seem ironic, on a deeper level, it was not. That source of joy was what he returned to in the rounded whole of his life.
His Life Celebration Service was held at the Bradford Academy Building auditorium on June 28th. More than 300 people were in attendance.
Sign Bob's Guestbook Article from The Dartmouth, May 5, 2008
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