|Written by The Circle,
|Average user rating
|| (0 vote)
Mildred Carol Ann Longbody-Swartz
December 12, 1939 – November 4, 2016
Mildred Carol Ann Longbody-Swartz was born Dec. 12, 1939, in Cloquet, the eighth of 10 children of Joseph and Mary (Flatte) Longbody from Grand Portage, Minnesota. Along with all her siblings, Millie was taken from her parents at a young age as a result of the federal forced assimilation program.
Millie was open-hearted and generous towards all. Despite many hardships in life, she remained a deeply cheerful person with a positive outlook. Her strength came from her spiritual life, in which she combined Catholicism and traditional Anishinaabe beliefs.
As children, Millie's older eight siblings had been taken to Pipestone Boarding School in southwestern Minnesota. But she and a sister, being too young, were placed in a Catholic orphanage in Duluth. A few years later, Joe and Mary Reynolds of Deer River took the girls into their home. Millie always had high praise for the Reynolds, an Anishinaabe couple who were kind and helped her reconnect with her roots. She continued her education at Haskell Indian Nations University where she took up Commercial Cooking.
Millie wasn't afraid of hard work and had a get it done attitude. She worked at Honeywell in Minneapolis, MN and later at the Minnesota Indian Women's Rescource Center where she prepared meals for the children at their daycare center. Later in life she moved back to Grand Portage and worked at Grand Portage Lodge and Casino until she retired.
Millie loved Powwows and loved to dance and celebrate her heritage and culture. She loved the simple things in life like walking her beloved pet, "Dobie", picking berries on a summer day and playing bingo at the casino. Millie's most obvious characteristics were her easy laughter and enormous smile. Before a series of strokes seriously handicapped her, she became affectionately known as "Miss America," because she waved and smiled at people as she passed them.
Preceding Millie in death were her parents; her husband, Glenn Swartz; four sisters, Josephine and Charlotte, Lillian "Theresa" Eveland, and Mary Lou Ackley; a brother, Joseph Longbody; and a granddaughter, Amber Lanham.
Survivors include one daughter, Brenda (Paul) Enyart of Shakopee, Minn.; three sons, Eugene Swartz and Duane Swartz of Grand Portage, and Tyrone Nehring of Florida; two sisters, Doris Blank of Grand Portage and Elsie Long of Auburn, Wash.; two brothers, Clarence Longbody of Red Lake and Ed Longbody of Grand Portage; six grandchildren, Jesse and Mya Swartz, Shane Losh, and Brock and Brandon Lanham, Jessica Wisnewski, all of the Twin Citiess; and great grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
Services were held at Holy Rosary in Grand Portage. Burial is at Sunset Cemetery. Arrangements are by Nelson Funeral Home of Cloquet.