Rock Funeral Home

1285 Ashley Blvd, New Bedford, MA


Dorothy M. Sweitzer

February 10, 1925October 29, 2019

On October 29, 2019, “Dottie” Sweitzer, age 94, died and was taken to the wonderful place prepared for her by her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ (as recorded in the Gospel of John, chapter 14).

Dottie was born to Pierre and Mildred Havener on February 10, 1925 in Rockland, Maine. She was the 7th of what would be 8 siblings, all of whom have preceded Dottie in death.

Dottie accepted Jesus Christ as her personal Savior as a teenager, but drifted somewhat from her childhood faith after she graduated from Rockland High School and enrolled at the prestigious New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, where she studied piano. After graduating from the conservatory, Dottie secured employment as a piano teacher at the Emma Willard School in Troy, New York. While singing in a community choir in Troy, she met Ken Sweitzer of Pittsfield, Massachusetts, and the two were married on June 20, 1948.

After the birth of Polly Ann, their first child, Dottie felt compelled to reconnect to her Christian roots and more intentionally pursue her relationship with God, as she wanted her children to know Jesus and follow him as their Savior and Lord. Dottie became a prayer warrior, especially for her family, and God answered her prayers by eventually leading all 4 of her children, as well as her husband, to know Christ, serve Christ, and grow strong in their Christian faith.

Dottie enjoyed a wide variety of music, but was especially fond of classical and sacred music. She loved to sing, play the piano, and teach piano lessons. In addition to serving on the faculty of the Emma Willard School, she taught piano at the Jenkintown (PA) School of Music and Cape Cod Conservatory. In addition, she instructed students in her home for many years, and she continued teaching piano until she was almost 80 years old. Dottie also freely shared her considerable musical gifts in a variety of unpaid settings, including playing and singing in numerous churches and nursing homes.

Dottie was preceded in death by both parents, all her siblings, her husband Ken (to whom she was married for almost 65 years), and a recently deceased son-in-law, Kevin Crispell. She is survived by all her children – Polly Crispell, Rick (Susan) Sweitzer, Jeff (Carla) Sweitzer, and Wayne (Katrina) Sweitzer – as well as 10 grandchildren and 8 great grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at the Hannah B.G. Shaw Home in Middleboro, Massachusetts, on Saturday, November 9, at 10:00 AM. Dottie’s family would like to extend their deep gratitude to the staff of the Shaw Home for providing exceptional care during the final 5 years of her life. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Dottie’s memory may be made to one’s favorite Christian charity and/or the non-profit Shaw Home.

Arrangements are in the care of Rock Funeral Home, 1285 Ashley Blvd, New Bedford, MA 02745.


  • One’s Favorite Christian Charity
  • Hannah B.G. Shaw Home


  • Memorial Service Saturday, November 9, 2019


Dorothy M. Sweitzer

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