October 21, 1935 - May 30, 2020
Joseph Russell "Russ" Schwegal, age 84 of Millville, proceeded to paradise on Saturday afternoon, May 30, 2020. Born and raised in Millville, Russ was a member of the Millville Thunderbolts in the 1950’s who won 31 straight games and two State Championships. At 5’ 7” and 165 pounds, he was a lineman and played both offense and defense. That’s hard to imagine in today’s game but he had the heart and determination to overcome his small stature. Until his recent illness, he enjoyed getting together with some of the former players for lunch each Thursday. There were definitely some tall tales swapped at those luncheons! After graduation in 1954, Russ married Duane Garrison and began a career as a Union bricklayer. At first, he was making $1.00 per hour. When his first son was born, he approached his boss and told him he just couldn’t make it on that salary. He was elated when he was offered a 25 cent per hour raise. He worked on many of the schools in Southern New Jersey but his work took him as far as Paris, France due to his expertise in rebuilding tanks in glass factories. He often worked 60 hour weeks and due to his hard work, was able to send all three of his kids to college. In his “spare time”, he built two houses where he and Duane raised their three kids. Russ was an active member of Second United Methodist Church and more recently New Hope United Methodist, both in Millville. He served as an Assistant Boy Scout Leader of Troop 7, a Sunday School teacher, and was one of several men who spent many hours maintaining the Second Methodist church building. He was also an avid Bible reader. Even after retirement, Russ was always busy. When he visited his kids, after a few days, he would get bored and say, “all right, what’s our project for this visit?” Those were great times but for his sons, it was often a welcome relief to get back to their “regular jobs” after those vacations. Russ is survived by his wife Duane of Millville; his 3 children, Steven from Oklahoma, Lisa (Felix) who lives in New Jersey, and Scott (Aronna) from Virginia; 10 grandchildren; 17 great-grandchildren; and half sister Helen Marie Robinson (Rob) of Millville. He was predeceased by his twin sons Mark and Glenn Schwegal; his Father Joseph A. Schwegel; mother Phyllis G. Finch; stepfather Lewis B. Finch Sr.; and two stepbrothers, Louis B. Finch Jr. and Charles (Skip) Finch. A Memorial Service for Russ will be conducted at a later date. Arrangements are under the direction of the Christy Funeral Home, Millville. Memorial contributions in loving memory of Russ may be made to: The Gideons International Processing Center, P.O. Box 97251, Washington, DC 20090-7251 or New Hope United Methodist Church, 2018 Newcombtown Road, Millville, NJ 08332. Memories and expressions of sympathy for Joseph Russell Schwegal may be shared on the Obituary Tribute Wall at: www.christyfuneralservice.com.
Joseph Russell "Russ" Schwegal, age 84 of Millville, proceeded to paradise on Saturday afternoon, May 30, 2020. Born and raised in Millville, Russ was a member of the Millville Thunderbolts in the 1950’s who won 31 straight games... View Obituary & Service Information
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