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William “Bill” L. Swingle

William “Bill” L. Swingle ’46, 95, passed away on Tuesday, March 26, 2024 at his home. He was the husband of the late Charlotte Ann Swingle.

William (Bill) Lewis Swingle passed away peacefully at home on Tuesday March 26, 2024. Bill was born February 15, 1929, in Scranton, PA. He was predeceased by his parents Millard Raymond and Elizabeth James Swingle, his wife of more than 70 years Charlotte Ann, sister Arlene Martin, and a brother Millard Raymond. He is survived by his sister Ann Pecota (California) and five children: Mark (Lucy), David (Stacie), Linda Millard (Kelly), John (Elaine), and Matthew. He was known as Grampa to his large and loving family including 10 grandchildren and 9 great grandchildren.

Bill was raised in the Milton Hershey School orphanage in Hershey, PA where at 16 he had the honor of being selected as a lead pall bearer for Mr. Hershey upon his death in 1945. After graduation, he was inducted into the Army, trained in radio operations, and served in the Korean War, receiving the Combat Infantryman’s Badge for his service. After discharge, he obtained additional training and was hired as an electronics technical representative on loan to the Navy. In that position he traveled extensively to Naval installations around the world repairing training equipment. Bill also found time to teach young people about his favorite sport, baseball. With friends Walter Bryan and Joe Smith, he coached and mentored many young players, including his four sons, throughout their early years.

Following his Naval work, Bill worked for Tabet Manufacturing Co. as Chief Engineer and eventually Vice-President. Bill left Tabet and founded his own business where he began service to musicians at “Music and Sound” in Norfolk. Following that, he opened “Sound Electronics” a small sales and service center. His ability to repair electronic musical equipment became widely known and appreciated and became a part of his life from then onward. He also loved helping local churches install lighting and sound equipment. During the later years of his life Bill worked for several of his friend’s businesses. His reputation was such that he became a virtual legend in his own time for musical electronics repair. His life was characterized by honesty, integrity, devotion to his family, and an incredible work ethic – so common to many of his generation. He will be missed by all who knew him. His family would like to extend their sincere appreciation to the staff of Senatara Hospice for their skilled and compassionate end-of-life care. At Bill’s request, there will be no formal service and his body was cremated. The family will host an informal gathering in remembrance at “Ballyhoos” restaurant in Virginia Beach on May 14th from 5-8pm. Anyone interested may make a contribution in Bill’s name to the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) of Coastal Virginia at 291 Independence Blvd, Suite 542, Virginia Beach, VA 23462.

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