Carolyn E. Swain Perez ’80 died on April 24, 2022, in Simi Valley, California
(The following was provided by the Portland Press Herald on May 13, 2022)
SIMI VALLEY, Calif. – Carolyn Evans Swain Perez was born on Dec. 19, 1957, in Cleveland, Ohio to Mary (Evans) Wren Swain and Raymond Llewellyn Swain, Jr., both from Medford, Mass. Carolyn thrived in the public schools of Lyndhurst, Ohio, with activities at the YMCA, Girl Scouts, church choir and the Cleveland Orchestra children’s chorus. Camp Ho Mita Koda (the 1st US camp for children with Type 1 diabetes) was dear to her heart. Carolyn’s years at camp extended from being a 7-year-old two-week camper to a summer-long counselor. She had a continuing relationship during her adult life as an advocate and donor. Carolyn’s love of Maine drew her to college at Bowdoin. A highlight of her college time was her junior year at the University of Freiburg in Germany. Her parents traveled with her during spring vacation and her younger sister, Elizabeth, spent the summer backpacking around Europe with her. She graduated from Bowdoin College and then earned an MBA from Boston University. After graduating from Katherine Gibbs – executive program, Carolyn worked at the First National Bank of Boston Company until she moved to California. For over thirty years, Carolyn enjoyed the L.A. area banking world and her colleagues there. She spent many of those years as a successful executive with Northern Trust Corporation. Carolyn’s greatest accomplishment was her valiant fight with Type 1 diabetes which she developed when she was seven. She battled the many challenging side-effects such as diabetic retinopathy, frequent cancers, heart problems, and kidney disease with optimism and resilience. She received a kidney transplant from her younger sister, Elizabeth, who was a 100 percent DNA match. The kidney transplant lasted thirty-eight years (well beyond the average fifteen years). On April 24, 2022, Carolyn died of kidney failure caused by her cancer treatment. Carolyn and her husband, Ray, had a very happy life and were devoted to each other. They traveled the world and particularly enjoyed cruises with evening shows and dancing together. Ray and Carolyn treasured their weekend home in Corona. Tennis, pickle-ball, ukulele jams, and time spent with friends were the joys of their weekends. She also particularly loved her home on Kennebec Point, Georgetown, where she spent every summer of her childhood and at least a few weeks of every summer after that. Carolyn loved sailing with Ray in the “Mary Fran” and picnicking on the front porch. She is survived by her husband, Ray Oscar Perez; her stepson, Max; her mother, Mary Wren Swain; and her siblings Robert (1959) (Sondra Sherman), Martha (1961) (Michael Buchman), Elizabeth (1962) (John Landry); and many nieces and nephews.