Viola Emma Swehla
Viola Emma Swehla, 101, passed away in the early morning hours of Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019, after a long and beautiful life.
Funeral Mass will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 19, at St. Ludmila Catholic Church by the Rev. Kenneth Glaser. Burial will take place at St. John Catholic Cemetery. Friends may visit with the family on Saturday at the church after 9:30 a.m. Brosh Chapel in Cedar Rapids is caring for the family.
Viola was born on a farm outside of New Hampton, Iowa, to Jim and Emma Panosh on Oct. 29, 1917. Growing up, she attended a small grade school in the country outside of Little Turkey. After school, Viola lived and worked in Little Turkey and Decorah before marrying Joseph William Swehla on Oct. 28, 1941. Together, they owned and operated taverns in Decorah and Spillville before moving to Cedar Rapids in 1946.
In the years since moving to Cedar Rapids, Vi had worked many different jobs, including positions at Collins Radio, Quaker Oats and as a housekeeper all over Cedar Rapids. Her primary job, though, was spent at St. Ludmila School, serving students in the lunch program. She retired from that position in 1983.
Vi was a wonderful cook and she often said that being in the kitchen, where she loved to be, was her only hobby. When spending time at Vi's house, you often had homemade banana bread or cookies, whether you were hungry or not. Loads of kolaches and rohlíky were consumed over the years. Vi was more sweet than her bakery, though, and her kind spirit will be greatly missed.
Viola is survived by her two sons, Gaylon (Kathy) and Harlan Swehla; granddaughters, Kelli Swehla, Ashley Sweeney (Andrew) and Leea Swehla (Brandon); and four great-grandchildren, Gracie, Joseph, Collin and Daniel.
Viola was preceded in death by her husband of 45 years, Joseph; parents, Jim and Emma Panosh; brother, Clarence Panosh (Lena); and sister, Pauline Erceg (George).
The family would like to thank Northbrook Care Facility, Hospice of Mercy, and Home Instead for the kind and compassionate care given to Viola.
Memorials may be directed to the charity of your choice in her name.
Online condolences may be directed to www.broshchapel.com.