Cover photo for Reverend Ames Kent Swartsfager's Obituary
Reverend Ames Kent Swartsfager Profile Photo

Reverend Ames Kent Swartsfager

March 26, 1938 — July 31, 2023

Due West, SC

Reverend Ames Kent Swartsfager


The Reverend Ames K. Swartsfager, 85, of Due West, SC, beloved husband of Judith Thrasher Swartsfager, passed away on Monday, July 31, 2023, at his home. He was born in New York, NY to the late Vernon and Grace Swartsfager.


He earned his degrees from San Francisco State University and the Church Divinity School of the Pacific.  Father Ames served as a full time Chaplain in the Federal Prison System for 21 years before retiring. In addition, he dedicated his life to serving in Episcopal churches in the United States as well as being the Chaplain for Woodstock. 


One of Father Ames’ greatest passions was sailing.  He and his wife lived 18 years on a sailboat and sailed the East and West coasts as well as in the Caribbean and South America.  He was an artist and musician, playing saxophone in a jazz band in his youth and singing and playing banjo and concertina with his wife in a Sea Chanty Duo. 


Father Swartsfager and his beloved wife Judy worshiped at Trinity Episcopal Church in Abbeville, where they found spiritual fulfillment through worship and service.


Father Ames is survived by his loving wife Judy of 65 years at their home in Due West. He is also survived by three daughters: Alaina Hernandez, Debra Semrau, and Laura Pringle; his two sisters Diane Townley and Jackie Eastlick. Father Ames leaves behind seven grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.


A Requiem Eucharist will be celebrated to the glory of God and in thanksgiving for the life and ministry of the Reverend Swartsfager on Friday, August 4, 2023, at 11:00 AM at Trinity Episcopal Church in Abbeville, SC with Reverend Rilla Holmes officiating. All are welcome.


In lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests that memorials be sent in memory of the Rev. Ames to the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) at 161 N. Clark St., Suite 3550, Chicago, IL 60601 or by visiting


A message of condolence may be sent to the family by visiting


Harris Funeral Home & Cremation Services of Abbeville is honored to assist the Swartsfager family during this difficult time.

To send flowers to the family in memory of Reverend Ames Kent Swartsfager, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

A Requiem Eucharist

Friday, August 4, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

Trinity Episcopal Church

200 Church Street, Abbeville, 29620

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