Gordon G. Swanson of Brewster, a chef and Cape restaurateur, died Wednesday, July 24. He was 84.
Mr. Swanson, known as Swanee, was born in Quincy, the son of George and Gladys Swanson. The family spent summers in their cottage in Popponesset and it was there that Mr. Swanson first got into the restaurant business. As a boy Mr. Swanson worked summers at the Popponesset Inn. It was a place he would come back to more than once in his career.
He attended Weymouth High School, Thayer Academy, Babson College and Culinary Institute of America. He returned to the Cape and to the Popponesset Inn, where he served as head chef.
It was at the Popponesset Inn that he met Sally V. Suorsa, an art teacher in Falmouth schools. They married in November of 1965. They lived in Waquoit for many years before moving to Sandwich.
They opened the Chart Room in Cataumet in 1972 with David and Carolyn Jarvis, and operated that for eight years. He and his wife then went to New Hampshire where they established Swanee’s in Stratham.
They returned to the Cape a year later and opened the Scorton Tavern in Sandwich. After six years they came full circle and returned to operate the Popponesset Inn the summer of 1984.
Later they opened The Ruddy Turnstone bed and breakfast in Brewster.
A longtime friend of Ms. Swanson was the press secretary for Rosalind Carter and, in 1981, she invited the couple to spend two days at the White House. Mr. Swanson, according to a story in the Enterprise, spent a good deal of time talking to Henry Haller, the White House chef.
In addition to his wife, Mr. Swanson leaves a son, Arvid Swanson of Ashland, New Hampshire, and a daughter, Abigail Swanson of Brewster; many nieces and nephews; and other family.
He was predeceased by his sister, Ruth Davies.
A celebration of his life will be Sunday, August 11, at 2 PM on the bluff at Pine Avenue in Popponesset.