Salem — Elma (Becker) Swecker, age 90, loving wife for 65 years of the late O. Palmer Swecker, of Salem and Arundel, Maine, died peacefully Tuesday, November 27, at Edgewood Nursing Home in North Andover, surrounded by her loving family.
Born in Youngstown, Ohio, the daughter of the late Frank and Vivian Becker, she graduated from Kingswood-Oxford (High) School, in Hartford, Conn. Mrs. Swecker attended Juilliard School of Music in New York City, where she was an accomplished pianist, then continued her studies at Vassar College, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree.
With a combined initial bankroll of $200, Elma assisted her husband in establishing and running the PEK Company in Salem, where she remained active and engaged in the business for over 40 years. Palmer often credited his remarkable success to Elma’s unfailing support, sage advice, and terrific writing skills. And, when she was not busy raising her six children, she loved playing her Grand piano, ballroom dancing, playing bridge with friends, and most of all, she enjoyed traveling. Elma and Palmer’s favorite home away from home was Rome, Italy.
She was a longtime member of the St. Michael’s Church in Marblehead and more recently was a member of St. Peter’s Church in Salem. Elma was also very active for over four decades in several Salem-area volunteer organizations, where she donated significant time and treasure to her favorite charitable causes.
Mrs. Swecker is survived by six children, Karen Bandhauer of North Andover, Margot Heyer and her husband Douglas of Millington, Tenn., Jeffrey Swecker and his wife Marsha of Bridgton, Maine, Eric Swecker and his wife, Debbie of Groveland, Christopher Swecker of Clearwater, Fla., and Tracy Jaeger and her husband Timothy of Alexandria, Va., 13 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
ARRANGEMENTS: Her memorial service will be held on December 8 at 3 p.m. in St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, 24 St. Peter St., Salem, MA 01970. At the family request, there will be no visiting hours. Interment will be private. Those who wish may make memorial contributions to the Alzheimer’s Association, PO Box 96011, Washington, D.C. 20090-6011. For online guest book or additional information, please call 781-631-8885 or visit www.MurphyFuneralHome.com.