James (Jim) Gayfree Swanson

James (Jim) Gayfree Swanson


James (Jim) Gayfree Swanson passed away peacefully in the early morning on July 16, 2019, surrounded by his family.

Jim was born on August 2, 1941, in Denver, Colorado, to Carl and Louise Swanson. The family spent many of his early years moving between Denver and Salina, Kansas, where Jim eventually stayed to go to school. He met his wife, Gayle, during their junior year of high school, and they were married on September 2, 1962. This last year they celebrated their 57th wedding anniversary.

Following college, Jim spent 32 years teaching junior high social studies classes and coaching football, basketball, and track at both the junior high and high school levels in Newton, Kansas, and Lisle, Illinois, as well as, coaching some of his son’s teams in Wheaton, Illinois. During this time he also became involved in the Kansas and Illinois education associations. In Illinois, he was active at the local and state levels of the Illinois Education Association.

Following early retirement in 1994, Jim and Gayle enjoyed collecting Imperial glass, attending Imperial glass national conventions, and each serving as board members of the National Imperial Glass Collectors’ Society for 10 years.

Jim is preceded in death by his older brother Don (Jodi and children), Texas;  survived by his wife, Gayle, of Apache Junction, Arizona;  daughter, Kim (Kent) Bostrom, and grandchildren Nicole, Ryan and Michael, Scottsdale, Arizona; son Troy Swanson, Madrid, Spain; brothers Mike,(and children) Boulder City, Nevada; Ross (Linda) and children) Colorado; Pam (and children) Colorado; sister-in-law Chris Watkins and son, Matt, Lenexa, Kansas.

His burial will be at Roselawn Memorial Park in Salina, Kansas, in October.  A Celebration of Life will be held in November at Superstition Sunrise in Apache Junction, Arizona. In lieu of flowers, the family would be honored by donations to Hospice at Home of Arizona in his name.  (Cash or check may be mailed to 1423 S. Higley Road Suite 121, Mesa, Arizona, 85206.)

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5 responses to James (Jim) Gayfree Swanson

  1. I know Troy…i see him as a passionate and compassionate human being, full of life… It only tells me that his roots are pretty good ..so his dad deserves the credit… Rest in peace sir… You will ever be remembered for the people you left behind to spread happiness…May you rest in peace

    1. Don Sullivan says:

      Your Dad was a great man. He was a good teacher and coach. Remember him, fondly. Glad I was able to know him as a teacher , coach and parent of you. when you played on my basketball team at Wheaton Central. You were blessed to have him as a Dad. God bless you and your family during this time. We will. always, remember him with the highest regards.

  2. Meena Gupta says:

    Sad to hear this Troy. Though I have never seen or met your father, what I have known from you about him is enough to feel that he was not only a great parent but also a good human being. I truly believe that children are a reflection of their parents and knowing you so closely for the last many years I can feel the profound love and happiness your father and mother have given you for you to have become such a great human.

    Swansons please take care and RIP Mr Jim.

    Love from many of us here in India.

  3. Penni says:

    Sorry to hear this. Love all the memories I have of our families getting together in Kansas and us visiting you all in Illinois. Praying for you all.
    Penni Britt Heller

  4. We send our love to Gayle, Kim, Troy, and all the family. Among other memories, we can picture Jim walking Kim down the aisle, arm in arm, on her wedding day. Somehow we had forgotten that both Gayle and Kim married their high school sweethearts! Bless you all for your faithfulness to one another, in these last days and always, and may your memories and your faith be of comfort “until that day of glad reunion in the life to come.”
    Greg and Kathy Bostrom

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