May 2, 1960 - May 31, 2020
On May 31, 2020, Janice Swanson Carda, with her loving family beside her, passed away from a massive stroke. Jan leaves behind her husband, Michael Carda; her beloved daughter Caitlin Tracey; the son -in-law she would have picked, Kyle Tracey and the best gift she ever got, her grandson, Liam. She also leaves behind her favorite and only sibling, Denice Swanson and brother-in-law James Ryan. She was preceded in death by her parents, Chet and Betty Swanson and her maternal grandmother, Margaret Hughes. Jan attended Hillsdale College for her Undergraduate degree and earned an MSW from Kalamazoo University. She was a therapist and social worker in Traverse City for decades, working with children and families in need and with patients from Munson Home Care. Genuinely interested in people and their life stories, Jan may enter a room of total strangers but left the with dozens of new friends. Her kindness and giving spirit were always available , even in the most unexpected places. When her regular UPS man was on vacation (OK, she wasn’t perfect, she had an Amazon dependency...who doesn’t?) his replacement arrived with multiple packages on a very hot day. She offered him a bottle of iced tea to cool off...and he exclaimed “ You’re the iced tea lady!”...even at UPS, she was legendary. Animals. She loved them. Raccoons and opossums in her back yard, a trio of cats who didn’t have a family until she took them in and dogs she adored throughout her life. She could coax a wounded animal into accepting help or a feral cat into becoming a family pet. Her connection to all creatures was amazing. Jan was Santa’s best elf, devoted to spreading good cheer and spirit to everyone. Family food service shut down as she devoted days and her kitchen to baskets of cookies and goodies shared with neighbors and acquaintances..some( you know who you are) shameless begged for extra Peanut Butter Balls . Her family was surrounded by the holiday traditions she excelled at keeping and the love with which she shared them. Traveling was her joy and her curiosity about places and people was limitless. Her first love was Ireland; tracking down obscure castles and legends, sheep and scones with jam and clotted cream at the end of a long day of adventure. Turkey, Russia (where she was tailed by the KGB...really), Africa, Croatia, and all of Europe; Jan collected experiences, stories and friends from all over the world. Through her travels she discovered her passion and talent for photography. Those pictures told a beautiful story of the places she had been. Her ready smile, her quick wit and witticisms, her endless compassion for people and animals and her deep and abiding love for her family and friends will leave a hole in the lives of all who knew and loved her. She left us too soon. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Cherryland Humane Society, 1750 Ahlberg Road, Traverse City, MI 49696 or online at www.cherrylandhumane.org.
On May 31, 2020, Janice Swanson Carda, with her loving family beside her, passed away from a massive stroke. Jan leaves behind her husband, Michael Carda; her beloved daughter Caitlin Tracey; the son -in-law she would have picked, Kyle Tracey... View Obituary & Service Information
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