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SOMAN Robert and Katherine Yovich Swan

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SOMAN Robert and Katherine Yovich Swan

Posted: 2 Aug 2011 1:54PM GMT
Classification: Obituary
Surnames: Mielnik
MINNESOTA – Katherine “Kay” Soman, 81, died on Feb. 12, 2011, after a long battle with Alzheimer’s dementia in Minneapolis.

Though an Ohio native, Kay had moved to the Twin Cities in 2005 due to failing health along with her husband, Robert Soman (see accompanying obituary).

Born May 7, 1929, in Campbell, Ohio Kay was the daughter of Anna (Muzak) Yovich and Joseph Yovich.

She graduated from Memorial High School in 1947 and then attended Youngstown College (Y.S.U. today) from 1947 to 1950, earning an associates degree in education.

She married her first husband, William Swan, in 1950, and they both taught on the Island of Guam at a U.S. military base for two years from 1952 to 54.
She returned to Ohio and taught first in the Youngstown, Ohio city school system for one year and then moved to the Struthers, Ohio school system for 32 years.
Kay taught all grades of primary school but spent most years teaching 5th grade.
She retired in 1984 but continued tutoring children outside the classroom for another 10 years.

Kay remarried in 1988, after her first marriage ended in divorce. With her second husband, Robert Soman, Kay lived an active and happy life in Canfield, Ohio where they grew orchids, golfed, traveled, and enjoyed classical music performances at YSU and Powers Auditorium as well as the annual Wooster Light Opera season.
She was also an active member in the Unitarian Church of Youngstown.

Kay is survived by her two daughters, Kay Yoest of Marietta, Ga., and Suzanne Swan Tracy of St. Paul, Minn., and five nieces and nephews.

Her older brother, Charles of Tampa, Fla., and older sister, Helen (Klus) of Scottsdale, Ariz., preceded her in death.

Kay became very active in the Friends of Music organization which supports students majoring in music at YSU and both she and Bob enjoyed student and faculty performances throughout many years.

Donations in honor of Kay and Bob Soman can be made to the Friends of Music - Kay and Robert Soman Scholarship Fund, which will benefit students of the Dana School of Music, Youngstown State University. Checks made may be mailed to the Friends of Music, P.O. Box 1652, Youngstown, OH 44501.

Robert “Bob” Soman, 94, died on Oct. 1, 2010, of pneumonia and complications of restrictive lung disease in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Though a long-standing resident of Warren and Canfield, Ohio Bob had moved to the Twin Cities in 2005 due to failing health along with his wife, Kay (see accompanying obit).

Born June 15, 1916, in New York City, Bob was the son of Esther Jacob Soman and Julius Soman.

He graduated from high school at the age of 16 and was awarded an academic scholarship to Cornell University, where he studied engineering. Bob graduated from Cornell in 1936 and became a licensed mechanical engineer, holding engineering positions in New York City and Coatesville, Pa. He also developed expertise in welding and was called in to consult on ‘leaking’ Liberty ships during World War II.

Bob held the position of Chief Engineer at Wean United in Youngstown, for over 20 years and also worked for the McKay Machine Company. He held 15 patents in his name for specialty presses and related equipment.

Bob’s first wife, Anne Mielnik, whom he married in 1943 and their son Allan Robert, preceded him in death. A younger brother, “Buddy,” also preceded him.

Bob remarried Kay (Yovich) Swan in 1988 and lived in Canfield until 2005 when he moved to St. Paul, Minn. (see accompanying obituary).

Bob and Kay led an active and happy life growing orchids, golfing, traveling, and enjoying classical music in the Youngstown area and the Wooster Light Opera season.

Bob was an avid pianist and in his earlier days, played saxophone in college and the flute in the Long Island Orchestra. Bob became very active in the Friends of Music organization which supports students majoring in music at YSU and with Kay, enjoyed student and faculty performances throughout many years.

Donations in honor of Kay and Bob Soman can be made to the Friends of Music - Kay and Robert Soman Scholarship Fund, which will benefit students of the Dana School of Music, Youngstown State University. Checks made may be mailed to the Friends of Music, P.O. Box 1652, Youngstown, OH 44501.


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