December 19, 2019 at 1:39 p.m.
Andy was born in Trade River, Wisconsin on April 7, 1924. He attended a one room country school until he went to high school in Grantsburg, WI. Following high school in 1943 he joined the Navy. He served on an LST 173 as a machinist mate in the North African, European Middle Eastern American Theatre, Asiatic Pacific Philippine Liberation and received a victory medal. He was honorably discharged November 21, 1945. He was so proud of his service to his country.
In 1948 he married his loving sweetheart at The Little Brown Church of the Vale in Nashua, Iowa. Andy and Geri returned to that church year after year to renew their vows and celebrate their undying love. They celebrated their 71st wedding anniversary in May 2019. Over the years Andy worked in various occupations. He moved to Taylors Falls in 1954 and worked at The Stop and Swap for many years. In 1969, Andy and his partner bought the Ace Hardware Store in Almelund, MN. Following the hardware store Andy and Geri built Camp Waub O Jeeg on their land which is on the banks of the St. Croix River. He loved his church and he shared his woodworking talents by creating beautiful pieces for the church. He served as Mayor of Taylors Falls in the 1960’s and he was an active member of the Taylors Falls Lions Club where he and Geri enjoyed working to keep the parks in pristine shape.
Andy was innovative and a visionary. His hobbies were abundant. He loved nature. He knew all the hot mushroom spots (which he kept secret) and he knew the names of every wildflower. He loved to landscape and build rock (boulder) walls. His current home is a testimony of his creativity. He was an amazing woodworker, an avid gardener, a wine maker, a canoer and much more.
He and Geri loved to travel. Over the years they traveled the world including doing 10 years of missionary work in Ecuador.
Above all, Andy loved spending time with his family. He was a great listener; he gave gentle but wise advice and never judged or had unkind words. His world was full of gratitude, awe and positivity. His family was the world to him and he was the world to his family.
He is survived by the love of his life wife, Geri; his children Linda (Jim) Grandstrand, Mary Ann (Todd) Rivard, and Wayne (Kerry) Swenson; grandchildren Missy (Wilson) Mills, Steven (Amy) Grandstrand, Amy (Erik) Hansen, Kori Rivard, Kristi (Jeff) Winkels, Zac Rivard, Ben (Anna) Swenson, Matt (Sara) Swenson, Jake (Alison) Swenson, and Jessie (Matt) Halligan; great grandchildren Andrew Mills, Katie Mills, Nick Grandstrand, Megan Grandstrand, Ben Hansen, Emily Hansen, Anna Hansen, Sara Hansen, Ethan Ringel, Siena Ringel, Gavin Winkels, Garrett Winkels, Hailey Rivard, Luke Rivard, Gretta Rivard, Agatha Swenson, Pearl Swenson, Thora Plum Swenson, Mason Swenson, Anna Swenson, Ray Halligan, and Madeline Halligan; and sister Violet (Vernor) Dahlberg.
He is preceded in death by his parents Hildur and Esther Swenson, grandson Christopher; siblings Robert, Art, Emory, and Effie.
Memorial Service is 11 a.m. Friday, December 20, 2019 at First Lutheran Church in Taylors Falls, Minnesota with visitation one hour prior to the service at the Church. Interment will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to the First Lutheran Church Steeple Fund. Arrangements by the Grandstrand Funeral Home. Condolences may be expressed online at www.grand