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Alma Tostenson Swayze Fessenden 1919-2013  

Posted: Wednesday, Jul 3rd, 2013

Alma Tostenson Swayze Fessenden, 94, of Creswell died June 17, 2013

She was born May 24, 1919 in Silverton, Oregon to Norwegian immigrants, Christian and Karen (Solhaug) Tostenson.

Alma graduated from Silverton High School in 1937 and received an Elementary Education Certificate from the Oregon College of Education in 1940.

She wed E.V. “Bud” Swayze on Dec. 23, 1943 in Silverton. He passed away in 1978. She wed Ernest “Ernie” Fessenden on June 17, 1979 in Newberg. He passed away in 2008.

Alma had a passion for teaching and all learning endeavors and received her calling at the age of six. She taught at many public and private schools in Oregon. She was beloved by generations of students. She instilled a love of learning in her pupils, children and grandchildren.

She was a life-long student of the Bible, frequently leading women’s Bible studies until her early 80’s. She was a USO dancer who danced with the Army soldiers at Camp Adair, Oregon during WWII where she met her husband, Bud. Alma was an amazing swimmer who swam regularly into her mid 80’s.

She was a member of Emmanuel Lutheran Church in Silverton, Ore. and of the Zion Lutheran and First Baptist Church in Newberg, Ore.

Survivors include a son, Robert Swayze and wife, Karen, of Cottage Grove, a daughter, Elizabeth (Swayze) and husband, Pastor James Markus, of Cottage Grove, a son, John Swayze and wife, Karen, of Carmel, Ind., a stepson, Dale Fessenden and wife, Debbie, of Dundee, Oregon, 12 grandchildren, and 18 great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her two husbands and a stepdaughter, Gail Dootson.

A memorial service will be held July 8 at 10 a.m. at Trinity Lutheran Church in Cottage Grove. Private burial occurred on June 21 at Valley View Cemetery in Silverton, however, a graveside ceremony will follow the memorial service on July 8 at 3:30 p.m. at Valley View Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be sent to Creswell Health and Rehabilitation Center, c/o Alma’s Activity Fund, 735 S. 2nd St., Creswell, OR 97426.

Arrangements under the care of Smith-Lund-Mills Funeral Chapel and Crematorium, Cottage Grove.

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