Chester “Neal” Swisher was born on March 4, 1932, to Paul and Katherine Sawatzky Swisher in rural Noble County, Oklahoma. He went to be with Jesus on April 18, 2021, in Cushing, Oklahoma. Until recently, his home was in Moab.
Neal was the second of six boys and no girls in the family. Being born during the Great Depression and raised in poverty molded him to be a hard worker but always willing to share with the less fortunate. Neal was educated in one-room rural schools until he started high school. He attended Cushing High School and Ripley High School, where he graduated in 1949. His favorite teacher was Mrs. Rainwater and he was known as her pet.
After high school, Neal worked in the oil fields until he was drafted into the U.S. Army and served as an artillery gunner in South Korea. After an honorable discharge, he returned to the oil fields and later operated earthmoving equipment in Utah. There, he married Mava Gibson and Paula Kay Swisher was born to this union in 1968.
Neal was known as a compassionate giver who kept his giving a secret. He especially cared for homeless and fatherless children and Jewish Christians in Israel.
Neal loved the outdoors and felt closest to God when he went on long 4-wheeler excursions into the high desert wilderness around Moab, where he would enjoy the wonder of God’s creation. On a clear sunny day, he could see beauty that most people never get to experience for a hundred miles around. These views were embedded in memory until he began to envision a far greater sight: his eternal heavenly home. Now he has entered that land of incomparable beauty.
Neal is survived by his daughter, Paula Johnson; his grandchildren, Zac and Demi; his great-grandchildren; and his brothers, Wes of California, Burke of Colorado and Texas, and Stan and Phil of Cushing, Oklahoma.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his brother, Gene; his sisters-in-law, Carol Ward Swisher, Wanda Ward Swisher and Betty Swisher; and by many friends.
A graveside service will be held on Tuesday, April 27 at noon at Sunset Gardens Memorial Cemetery. You may send condolences to the family at www.spanishvalleymortuary.com.