June 9, 2015

My dad.

Gordon Charles Schmidt
Grandpa Gordy
May 18, 1946 - June 6, 2015

Gordon Charles Schmidt, 69, of Hastings, MN passed away unexpectedly Saturday while gardening at the Minnesota Veterans Home of Hastings.

Born May 18th, 1946, in Tracy MN, he was a son of Annabelle (Pape/Schmidt) Turbes (d. 2009) and Kenneth Schmidt (d. 1962). 

Gordon grew up in Milroy, MN and graduated from Milroy High School in 1965. 

Upon graduation, he was drafted by the US Army and served in Vietnam for 3 years. 
He married his high school sweetheart, LeeAnn Marie Dudgeon on May 4, 1968, but later divorced after 12 years of marriage. 

They had three children:  Denise, Janell, and Kenny. 

He remarried, Guilda Mae Allen, March 24, 1984, that also resulted in a divorce in 1988. 

Gordon had worked as a farmer for 20 years on the family’s second generation farm south of Milroy along with his brother, Allen Schmidt. 

He spent the winters building custom cabinetry and other woodworking projects; worked for the Redwood Country Highway department; and was a volunteer for the Milroy Fire Department. In 1987, the family moved to Minneapolis where he worked in factory manufacturing around the Twin Cities before joining the Minnesota Veterans Home in Hastings in 2003. It was there where he resumed his passion for woodworking and other creative inspirations.  He was involved in building furniture for the department of veteran affairs, commissioner’s office, and veteran’s organization throughout the state.  
His master craftsmanship has also won him national recognition in the National Veterans Creative Arts Festival three times for his custom designed clocks. Earlier this year, he had submitted another piece of artwork, a grande two and half foot Dutch wooden clock, for the 2015 National Veterans Creative Arts Festival being held in Durham, North Carolina in October. 

He enjoyed traveling, fishing, camping, gardening, crafting, the many activities held at the veterans home, and spending time with family. He was a member of the St. Michael Roman Catholic Church while living in Milroy. He regularly donated his time in maintaining the St. Michael Cemetery while farming in Milroy. 

He is a veteran of the Vietnam War serving as a private for communications in the U.S. Army.  

He was an active member of the Minnesota Veterans Home in Hastings such as working in their woodshop making flag cases; creating art projects such as stain glass and quilting; gardening; and providing fresh vegetables to the home. 

He is survived by his children: Denise Marie Olson and Keith of Corning, New York; Janell Marie Schmidt of Redwood Falls; and Ken Ray Schmidt of Alexandria.  

His Grandchildren:  Derrick Michael Rovira of Anaheim, CA; Kaitlyn Rose Ochs of Redwood Falls, Madison Anne Olson and Jackson Peter Olson of Corning, NY.  

His siblings: Genevieve Gjerde and Kenneth, Sr. of Minneapolis, MN; Janice Donavan and Peter of Palos Heights, IL;  Marlene and Thomas Glomski of Surprise, AZ; Allen (“Butch”) Schmidt and Carol of Marshall, MN; JoAnne Stattleman of Pine River, MN and Rosemary Brau and LeRoy of Redwood Falls, MN. In addition to his father and mother, he is preceded in death by his former wife, LeeAnn, and his grandson, Darrin Michael Rovira.

Funeral Services for Gordon Charles Schmidt
Thursday, June 11th, 1:00PM 
The life celebration will be held at the Minnesota Veterans Home in Hastings. The location of the celebration will be outside of building 25 by the gardens; the gardens that were groomed and maintained by dad. After the celebration, there will be snacks and drinks in the home's front lobby located just across the street from the gardens. If weather does not cooperate, the celebration will be moved to the gymnasium.

1200 East 18th Street
Hastings, Minnesota 55033

Friday, June 12th, 1:00PM 
Final resting place will be at the St. Michael's Catholic Cemetery in Milroy, MN. The ceremony will be located at the cemetery with cake, coffee and drinks afterward in the St. Michael's basement.

The St. Michael’s Cemetery is located one mile south of Milroy on County Route 8.

Church of Saint Michael
200 Euclid Avenue
Milroy, MN 56263
Phone: (507) 336-2505 

Flowers can be sent to either address; however we ask that in lieu of flowers, that plants (vegetables and fruit) and planting flowers be sent to the Minnesota Veterans Home in Hastings, or donations can be made to the home in Gordon's honor. For questions or information on donating, please contact Ellen Nelson at (651) 539-2444 and visit the Hastings Giving Guide for ideas on how to give: http://mn.gov/mdva/homes/hastings/hastingsgivingguide.jsp#.

When life gave him lemons, 

he made lemonade.  

That was my dad.

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