Donald E. Van Swol

Donald E. Van Swol

POYNETTE – Donald E. Van Swol, age 84, passed away on Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019, after a courageous battle with cancer. He was born on Sept. 9, 1935, in Racine, the son of Morris and Lavena (Hansen) Van Swol, Sr. Don proudly served his country with the U.S. Army during the Korean War. On March 15, 1991, he married Josephine “Jo” (Palzkill) McGettigan.

Don had a variety of interests and could fix or make most anything. Over the years he created scores of lifelike wood carvings of wildlife including fish, birds, chipmunks and bears. He enjoyed walking the woods, picking bushels of berries and fruits to make delicious jellies and wines to share. But his favorite pastime was dancing with Jo. Together they followed bands all over the area and were often the first dancers on the floor followed by their many friends.

In addition to his wife Jo, survivors include his daughter, Patti Bostad; his stepson, Kevin (Jody) McGettigan; grandchildren, McKinley and Brett Bostad, Zach Damman, Killian Bartels and Blake Franklin; his daughter-in-law, Angie Damman; his brother, Morris Jr.; his in-laws, Violet Stilen, Merlynn Dumke, Mary (Larry) Argall, Paul (Marge) Palzkill and Jane (Russ) Tonelli; and other relatives and many friends. He was preceded in death by his parents; his son, Rick; his daughter, Pam; his brother, Jim; and his sister, Elaine Dumke.

In honor of Don’s wishes, a celebration of his life that will include dancing and music will be announced at a later date.

The family would like to extend a special thanks to the many caring neighbors, friends and family for their aid and comfort and also their appreciation to Don’s caregivers from the Columbia Health Care Center, VA Hospital and Agrace HospiceCare for their gentle care and kindness. Online condolences may be made at