MERRY POINT—Douglas Arthur Swane was born on April 19, 1942, in Rockville Centre, New York, the son of Frederick and Dorothy Swane, was named for General Douglas MacArthur and died October 5, 2021, while a resident of Merry Point.
He contracted polio as a child and suffered a broken back as a young man, but always overcame all life’s obstacles.
Doug was preceded in death by his wife, Brenda.
He is survived by his daughters, Denise Reed (Randall) and Doreen Kern (Dieter); four grandchildren, Heather (Sam), Heath, Anne (Dominic) and Nico (Tracy); two great-granddaughters, Annabelle and Amelia; and special friend, Laura Dent, who was his companion of many years and compassionate caregiver for the past few years.
Doug was an early pioneer in the development of computer hardware, systems and installations, and traveled the United States while raising a family, going to electronics school and troubleshooting computer systems for major companies. He was instrumental in developing and establishing the early computer technology around which our world revolves today. He was sent to Vietnam during the war to design and construct computer systems for military and other U.S. government agencies. In the U.S. and while employed by NCR, he travelled the country extensively and designed, installed and set up computer systems for some of the nation’s largest companies.
A true entrepreneur, he left the computer world at age 34 and established “Doug’s Restoration Center” in Louisa, where he engaged in the repair and restoration of antique automobiles. He reveled in completely tearing down a car and its engine, repairing and in most cases, bending metal and remaking fenders and other parts to restore the vehicle to its past glory. He worked on everything from construction equipment to antique vehicles. His restorations were envied winners in antique auto shows from Hershey to Ohio. In the late 1980s he transferred his operation to his warehouse on Merry Point Road in Lancaster County where he continued his restoration work, at all times loving and caring for his horses, dogs and cats.
Doug had an amazing mind and was truly one-of-a-kind, a raconteur of the first order, a man’s man, and a loyal friend. To him nobody was a stranger, just a friend he hadn’t yet met. He touched many lives, and everyone who knew him will cherish his memory forever.
Donations in Doug’s memory may be made to the Animal Welfare League of the Northern Neck, P.O. Box 975, White Stone, VA 22578.