Publisher’s Note: The following article was written by Charles Cumpston, long-time industry editor, in remembrance of his former colleague and friend John Swanson, editor of Window and Door magazine. Swanson passed away on Sunday after a long battle with cancer. The thoughts and prayers of all of us at DWM magazine go out to Swanson’s family. He was a great colleague and competitor that the industry will truly miss.

John Swanson was just a nice guy. I have the distinction of hiring him and being responsible for his being part of the door and window industry for so many years. I remember when John came in for an interview those many years ago. He was young but quiet and serious, even then. I could tell he had a lot of potential and so decided to hire him pretty much on the spot.

He had an excellent work ethic and applied himself very quickly to learning the glass industry. After a few months, I asked him how he liked the job. “Like my dad says, ‘It’s a good first job.’” Well, it may have been his first job, but he sure has stayed in the industry a long time.

And as much as John liked the industry and felt comfortable in it, so the industry liked him and felt comfortable with him. It was a relationship based on mutual trust and respect. With John, you always knew where you stood. No pretense or falseness.

John and I shared many of life’s most important events. And I am glad that I had the opportunity to be there with him when he married and when his children were born. You don’t replace friends like John. Nor will the door and window industry replace him. But the industry will carry on, its sources of information in good hands. John Swanson was one of a kind and he left a large legacy in the industry.



  1. John was the first person I met from the magazine side of the window and door industry. I really can’t remember exactly when it was, but I do recall that I liked John. He was a man of good character. We were able to build a business relationship that was mutually beneficial and allowed us to have complete trust in each other. We will miss John. If I consider the man, I can only think that the greatest legacy he leaves behind, his children, must be wonderful. Those of us who knew John were truly blessed through the time we shared with him. May God bless his family.

    Dave Byers
    L.B. Plastics, Inc.

  2. I did not know John very well, but what I did know of him, he was a man of integrity. I deeply respected him. When he wrote an article, I read it. May god bless…

  3. I can’t say it better than it already has been said here, both in the Charles Cumpston’s column and the comment above by Dave Byers. John will be missed. He was a class act.
    Angie DeRosa
    Plastics News

  4. I knew John from covering the Builders Show and various remodeling shows. John was a soft-spoken guy, who always had a smile.

    He had a huge amount of knowledge, and was willing to share and trade sources, and funny stories about some of the characters in the window business.

    John is one of those characters, and he will be greatly missed. A classy, humble man.

    Bill Bregar
    Plastics News

  5. I have known John for over 20 years. He was talented, challenging, engaging and fun. He was a great source of information and his columns kept the industry updated on the changing and challenging times. In good times and in bad, you could count on him. He was a man of character and great person integrity.

    I personally and all from Chelsea who knew him will miss him. To the family, May God bless you and keep you safe and provide comfort during this difficult time.


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