Friend was Santa, comedian, blessing

Posted: Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Many people can tell a joke that makes their audience laugh. Few people can cause the audience to laugh in anticipation of the punch line, even before the punch line is delivered. Many people can pretend to be Santa Claus, but few people are so convincing that they can persuade adults, as well as children, that he does, indeed, exist. Many people are good sales people, but few people can sell just about anything and make the buyer feel good about buying it!

Roland Schwanke was one of these few exceptional people whose life makes our own life a little brighter.

Some people enhance your life just by being part of it. These people are constant through the years and are always a dependable friend regardless of what is going on in their life or in your own life. These people are special blessings sent to us by God that we don’t always appreciate at the time. Roland was (as his wife, Donna, is) one of these special people.

Roland was one of the first people I met when I arrived in Alaska in March 1970. Through the next 28 years in Alaska, he was always there for me in different capacities, for instance, as a family friend as well as an employer for many family members.

He will be missed here on Earth, but I am sure on the Other Side, his audience is anticipating a punch line to a humorous story.

Karen Parrish

Post Falls, Idaho

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