Gorden, Mary Louise

Birth Name Gorden, Mary Louise
Call Name Mary Lou
Gender female


Relation to main person Name Relation within this family (if not by birth)
Father Gorden, Emanuel G.
Mother McCormick, Rose D.
    Sister     Gorden, [Living]
         Gorden, Mary Louise
    Sister     Gorden, Karen


    Family of Gorden, Mary Louise
    Family of Swank, Robert and Gorden, Mary Louise
Married Husband Swank, Robert
Event Date Place Description Notes Sources
Marriage 1949-07-03 Michigan City, LaPorte, Indiana, USA Marriage of Swank, Robert and Gorden, Mary Louise
  1. Swank, [Living]
  2. Swank, [Living]
  3. Swank, [Living]



Robert “Bob” R. Swank, 83, of LaPorte, died at 3:20 a.m. Sunday, April 11, 2010, at his home.

He was born May 11, 1926, in Bourbon, IN, the son of Ray and Gladys (York) Swank.

Mr. Swank was a pastor. He served alongside his wife, Mary Louise, as missionaries in Africa from 1955-57. He was involved in missionary work in India at the time of his passing. He was the author of the book, “Cleansing the Leper,” which was translated into Talmi. He received a bachelor of philosophy from Manchester College, a master of religion from Bethany Theological Seminary in Chicago, an aeronautical engineer degree from Lewis College, and a master in education from Indiana University. He was a U.S. Navy veteran of World War II. He was a member of New Philadelphian Church, American Legion and NRA.

On July 3, 1949, in Michigan City, IN, he married Mary Louise Gorden, who survives.

Also surviving are three sons, Rodney (Leona) Swank of St. Louis, MO, Curt (Kim) Swank of LaPorte and Dave Swank of Goshen, IN; eight grandchildren, Jenn (Henry) Shuffle, Josh Swank, Johannah Swank, Atlanta Swank, Alexandra Swank, Tiffany Kinter, Barry (Keunae) Kinter, and Amber (Matt) Ballard; one great-grandson, Jackson Ballard; three sisters, Maxine Tyson of Bremen, IN, Jeri Robison of Denver, CO, and Carol (Lyle) Hall of Bremen, IN; and two brothers, Don (Marlene) Swank of Plymouth, IN, and Larry (Sherry) Swank of Syracuse, IN.

He was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Marilyn Metcalf.

Friends will be received from 2 to 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 13, and from 9 to 10 a.m. on Wednesday, April 14, at Cutler Funeral Home, LaPorte. Services will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday at the funeral home with Dr. David Stone officiating. Interment will follow in Bremen Cemetery, Bremen, IN, with full military honors.

Contributions may be made to New Philadelphian Church India Missions, 1404 E. U.S. 20, LaPorte, IN 46350.


December 1, 2011
Mary Louise Swank
June 21, 1930-Nov. 27, 2011



Mary Louise Swank, 81, died Sunday in Goshen at the home of her son, David.

She was born June 21, 1930 in Waterford, daughter of Emanuel and Rose (McCormick) Gorden.

She was married July 3, 1949 in Michigan City, to Robert "Bob" Swank, who preceded her in death April 11, 2010.

She taught elementary school for many years at Rolling Prairie, LaPorte and Michigan City school systems. She served on the mission field with her husband in Africa from 1955-1957 and took several short-term mission trips to India.

She was active in Blossoming Rose during the 1990s-early 2000s. It started operations in 1983 and was incorporated in 1987 as a 501(c)3 charitable organization. Their main focus has been humanitarian projects in Israel and educational travel opportunities to the Middle East.

She is survived by three sons, Rodney (Leona) Swank of St. Louis, Mo., Curt (Kim) Swank of Wisconsin, and Dave Swank of Goshen; eight grandchildren, Jenn (Henry) Shuffle, Josh Swank, Johannah Swank, Atlanta Swank, Alexandra Swank, Tiffany Kinter, Barry (Keunae) Kinter and Amber (Matt) Ballard; two great-grandsons, Jackson Ballard and Gilead Shuffle; a great-granddaughter, Isabell Ballard; and a sister, Karen Calderone of Denver, Colo.

She was preceded in death by a sister, Jean Ulrey, and her parents.

There will be a time of visitation with the family from 4 to 7 p.m. CST today at Cutler Funeral Home, LaPorte, where services will take place at 10 a.m. CST Saturday with the Rev. DeWayne Coxon officiating.

Interment will follow in the Bremen Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to COR International, P.O. Box 4361, Chesterfield, MO 63006.

Messages of condolence may be shared on the online register book at www.cutlerfuneralhome.com.


November 1, 2011

Dear Gorden, [Private],

It is very difficult for me to write, due to a stroke in March, I don't have internet, but I have a cell phone with unlimited minutes. You could call me & I'll call back. It would be easier for me, if you'd write you're phone # and I'll call you. Tell me time of day.


Mary Lou Swank

I married Robert Swank

-had three sons
Rodney W
Curtis B
David B

We were missionaries in Africa & India

[Return address: 1404 E US Highway 20, La Porte, IN, 46350-8358]


"Did you hear that our cousin, Mary Louise Swank, passed away last week? I felt so awful about it because I didn't know about it in time to attend the funeral. She was my age and we spent a lot of time together when we were growing up. Uncle Thurl,(Dale's dad) Uncle Manny (Emanuel) and my dad (Israel) saw that our families spent a lot of time together. We lived fairly close and were always together on holidays, along with Grandma Gorden who was in her late 80's when she died." Gorden, [Private]


  1. Gorden, Emanuel G.
    1. McCormick, Rose D.
      1. Gorden, [Living]
      2. Gorden, Mary Louise
        1. Swank, Robert
          1. Swank, [Living]
          2. Swank, [Living]
          3. Swank, [Living]
      3. Gorden, Karen