Lael Siobhan Swank, 49, of Mountain Top, passed away Saturday, March 14, 2020, in Wilkes-Barre General Hospital following a long and courageous fight with cancer.
Born in Wilkes-Barre on March 9, 1971, she was the daughter of Murtie Lou Trabitz Marsilio and the late William Rowker. She is survived by her loving husband of 22 years Randy Swank and her two sons Garrett and Jason Swank. She was preceded in death by her father.
A graduate of the Crestwood High School class of 1989, and a proud lifelong resident of Mountain Top, Lael was a member of St. Jude Church and the Mountain Top Welcome Club. As a tireless supporter of her sons’ academic and athletic careers she was active in the Crestwood Football Booster Club and Wrestling Club.
Lael faced the challenge of her diagnosis head on and with tenacity. In doing so, she became a leading local advocate for cancer awareness and early detection; the largest individual fundraiser over multiple years for the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure; the 2011 closing ceremony Survivor flag raiser for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day; the 2019 Honorary Chair Survivor for the Susan G. Komen NEPA Race for the Cure; and an always-available sounding board for other women facing breast cancer.
While Lael made significant contributions to the fight against cancer, she was not defined by her diagnosis. She lived every day with a singular purpose to experience life to the fullest and to be there to raise her sons. A consummate “mom of boys”, firm when necessary but soft to the core, she was a fixture in the stands of countless football, wrestling, lacrosse, little league and basketball events.
She travelled extensively with her family and enjoyed everything from snowmobile trips, to Oklahoma football games, to weekends at the beach. Lael often brought a sense of mischief and energy to social activities with friends, and like her favorite flower, the sunflower, she was loyal, warm, bright and fun.
She was loved by many, and will be eternally missed.
In addition to her mother, husband and sons, Lael is survived by her step father, Atty. Thomas Marsilio, Mountain Top; step mother, Barbara Rowker, West Hampton Beach, NY; sister, Kellie Rowker, Atlanta, GA; sister, Kara Venesky, Mountain Top; brother, Jeff Marsilio, Calabasas, CA; brother Nick Marsilio, Harrisburg; sister, Mariah Marsilio, Mountain Top and several nieces and nephews.
The family would like to thank the doctors and staffs of Fox Chase Cancer Center, The University of Pennsylvania Abramson Cancer Center, and Dr. Saidman Medical Oncology Associates for their dedicated care.
Due to the recent public health restrictions, and recent directives from the Scranton Diocese, the previously planned public visitation for Thursday March 19, 2020 has been cancelled. The Mass of Christian Burial at 10:00am Friday March 20, 2020 at St. Jude Church, and following internment, will be for immediate family members only.
A public Celebration of Life, to gather together and share our best memories of Lael, will be held in the near future, at a date to be determined.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in memory of Lael Swank to the Think Pink Foundation of Mountain Top. (www.thinkpinkmountaintop.org)
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Think Pink Foundation
820 Saint Marys, Mountain Top PA 18707