Michael Keith Swearingen, 65, passed away on December 30, 2023, in the compassionate care of the hospice nurses, staff and volunteers of Omega House located in Houston, Texas. He was born on November 21, 1958, in Amarillo, Texas to George S. Swearingen and Patsy Louise Childers. He is survived by his two godchildren, Katie and Brent Goebel, his longtime friend, Amy Goebel, as well as numerous other loving friends and family.
His life partner, David E. Neely, preceded him in death and now will be interred with him forever. Michael and David volunteered at Omega House from 1992 until 1997 and were then instrumental in founding and volunteering at Alive Hospice in Nashville, Tennessee. Michael stated that his service with terminal patients taught him not to fear death. In his words, “I wanted to help people die with as much dignity as possible.”
After caring tenderly for his dying partner, Michael placed the urn containing David’s cremains beside his bed at Omega House and said, “Now it’s his turn to watch over me.” Michael was featured in a Houston Chronicle opinion piece that advocated for the passage of a “Death with Dignity” law in Texas. Michael hoped that by publicizing the needless prolongation of his constant pain, he might help other terminal patients have a more graceful ending to their lives.
A graveside service will be held on January 5th, 2024, at 2pm at Washington Cemetery, located at 2911 Washington Avenue, Houston, Texas 77007 which can be accessed only through the Glenwood Cemetery gates. In lieu of flowers, those wishing to make a memorial donation in Michael’s memory may do so to Omega House, 602 Barnard Street, Houston, Texas 77006.