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September 28, 2020

Swank, Oldest Lake City Resident, Dies in Gunnison April 17, Age 98


A memorial celebration for Lake City’s oldest native, 98-year old Celia Rawson Swank, will be held later this summer, according to family members.
Mrs. Swank was a resident of Gunnison Valley Health Care Center at her death 10:42 a.m. Tuesday, April 17. She had been in a semi-conscious state and partly paralyzed following an apparent stroke which suffered last week.
Widow of the late Joel F, Swank, she was born in Lake City in 1919 and would have celebrated her 99th birthday next month. The daughter of Lake City pioneers William O. and Mabel (Downing) Rawson, Celia was predeceased by her siblings, including her sister Margaret Campbell and brothers Downing Rawson, Hufty Rawson, and Norman Rawson.
She was the sole graduate of Lake City High School in 1937 and went on to a career as pharmacist at Lake City Drug Store and an intrepid, early jeep driver touring tourists along high country jeep tours.
Most recently, she and her husband, Joel, who died in 2011, owned fishing lakes at Castle Lakes on the upper Lake Fork. She was a founding member of both Pioneer Jubilee Women’s Club and Hinsdale County Historical Society, receiving a lifetime achievement award from the women’s club last year.
Further obituary details later.

The “Huntress of Lake City,” Celia Rawson Swank, with big horn sheep, circa 1950s.

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