|Maxine N. Swails better known as "Aunt Max", 91 of Monmouth died 3:15 a.m. Sunday, October 21, 2012 at home.
She was born in Oakville, Iowa on March 11, 1921 to Floyd Thomas and Clara O. (Schultz) Swails. Maxine and her family moved from Oakville to Seaton, IL in May of 1925 and then from Seaton to Little York in March of 1933. Maxine attended schools in Seaton and Little York graduating from Little York High School on May 26, 1939. In August of 1939 Maxine moved to Monmouth, IL. While living in Seaton she worked at the grocery store and she did housework while living in Little York. After moving to Monmouth Maxine began working at Monmouth Pottery (Western Stoneware) in 1941 as a slipper, the person who put the glaze on cheese jars and other pottery items until her retirement on March 11, 1983.
Maxine was baptized at the Little York United Methodist Church on June 13, 1934 when she was thirteen years old. She joined the First United Methodist of Monmouth on April 9, 1946 and taught Sunday School there for over 60 years. Maxine had a strong faith in God and was very active in her church. She was a member of the Priscilla Circle, Church Women United and numerous bible study groups. She was also a member of three different birthday clubs.
Maxine loved children, birds, deer, sunsets, sunrises and rainbows. She loved gathering up the first snow into a snow ball and placing it in her freezer and racing to see the first robin of spring. Her favorite bird was the cardinal and the Cardinals were her favorite baseball team. She loved spending time with family and friends and had just as much fun playing with the children as she did visiting with the adults. She never had a driver's license but traveled more miles than most of us who do have a driver's license. She walked wherever she had to go and if she needed to go out of town there was always a ride waiting for her. She never married or gave birth but was a positive influence on countless children and family members. She was young at heart and because of that children loved being with her.
The legacy of Aunt Max will live on in the many lives she touched in her 91 years of life. As a Sunday school teacher she taught generations biblical principles that guide them today. As an aunt to over 70 nieces and nephews she has instilled generosity and caring. To the scores of friends she had she has never missed a birthday or anniversary and remained faithful to send greeting cards until her last day. Her love of those around her was genuine and sincere. Her charitable nature was apparent in the many causes and people she chose to support and care for throughout her life. In her death she created a tool to carry on a small part of her legacy by creating the Maxine N. Swails Charitable Fund, for which her family is very proud of her. This fund will look for projects and programs in the Monmouth area that will ensure the many things she cared about during her life will continue to receive her support after her death.
Maxine is survived by thirteen nieces and nephews in addition to many great-nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, five brothers: Herschel, Myles, Tom, Wayne and Arnold as well as three sisters: Evelyn Swails, Rose Scheid and Joan Gibb.
Funeral services will be 10:30 a.m. Saturday, October 27, 2012 at First United Methodist Church, Monmouth with the Revs. Jon Sims and Hank Crede officiating. Burial will be in Little York Cemetery. Friends may call Saturday morning at First United Methodist Church, where her family will be present one hour prior to the service to receive friends. Memorials may be made to the Maxine N. Swails Fund c/o the Galesburg Community Foundation 246 E. Main Street Galesburg IL. Hoover-Hall Memorial Chapel, Monmouth is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be left at www.hooverhall.com