Dolores “Dee” Marie Swobodzien, 62, died October 26, 2019 in Apopka, Florida after complications related to surgery for heart disease. Dee asked courageously of her husband Frank; to end this fight. Dee died peacefully and on her own terms with family and friends at her bedside; her favorite songs playing and mouthing the words, absorbing all the love that was present. She visited with her grandkids which brought a smile to her face. She was at peace.
She leaves her husband of 44 years, Frank, only son Brian and his wife Amanda and grandkids; Haylee, Frank, and Jamison, siblings Janet Field, Maureen Cranmer, and Mary Kopay, and sister in law Marie Black Behnken. Her adopted sister, Jackie and her bestie, Faye. Her close karaoke friends were close by her for support. Dee is preceded in death by her older brother Austin in 2018, mother Mary Helen in 1990 and father Henry in 1973.
Born on December 18, 1956 in Neptune, New Jersey. She lived in her childhood home before her boyfriend Frank; married her on October 16, 1980 and took the “baby sister” away to Florida. Her mother Mary never warmed up to Frank. He was stereotyped as the “long haired, hippy from the city” who had too many cars for just being a mechanic.
Florida was a new start and a new life together. Their only son Brian was born in Altamonte Springs, Florida on December 20, 1987, their life was taking off. In 1991, Frank started Central Florida Auto Repair. His success was almost immediate due to his “old school” values. Soon after, Frank brought Dee into the business as a full time 50% partner.
Dee was the organizer supreme. Her child like voice fooled many customers who met her in person. Dee worked in the background doing donation work for the City of Apopka kid’s summer camp. She organized a yearly car show with 100% of the proceeds going to the kids programs. Dee was also helpful with charities for the blind and deaf.
Long known for her positive outlook on life, her sense of humor and caring soul. Dee’s hobby was karaoke singing and was good at it. Local bands would have her “guest sing” on stage. Her voice was powerful. Dee’s table was always open to anyone who wanted to talk. Dee also had a knack for picking winning scratch off lottery tickets, or picking the right slot machine.
Meeting her adopted sister Jackie in 2004, the bond was almost immediate and became inseparable. They would plan everyone’s birthday party, alongside of a new friend Faye. Dee and Jackie loved to play little jokes and games on people. Dee and Jackie even got husband Frank to dress up like a witch as they did every Halloween; dress and all. Frank was adopted into the sisterhood and lovingly so. It made Dee happy; “so be it”, imagine overhearing a conversation when Jackie would state “that’s Frank, my sister”. The looks were priceless and always brought a laugh from Dee.
Dee, Jackie, and Faye spent many recent late nights texting when Dee couldn’t sleep. This was an issue because Dee could not get to work on time. Our customers would ask “Where’s Dee?” I would joke back “She’s late, but that’s ok. She sleeps with the boss”. It always got a laugh.
Dee faced her end and her mortality as she lived her life: happy, strong, peaceful and with concern for others. Dee ended her health battles with congestive heart failure on “her own terms”, “So take that” she said as she stuck out her tongue while she sat at baby Frank’s 1’st birthday party with her defibulator on.
Dee wished to be cremated. The Memorial Service will be Saturday, November 09, 2019 at noon. It will be celebrated at Loomis Family Funeral Home in Apopka, Florida.
If you’re a little late, that’s ok. If you knew Dee and Frank, they were always casually late. It was usually due to Dee’s wardrobe changes or hair issues, but Frank was always to blame. “Do you know how many times I had to cover the speedo so I could make up time.”
Dee requested for any donations to be made in her name to the American Heart Association.
The family wishes to thank everyone and anyone we forgot that has touched Dee’s life on this earth.
Gathering of Friends
Loomis Funeral Home Chapel
Loomis Funeral Home Chapel