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Paul W. Schmidt

December 9, 1948 November 22, 2017
Paul W. Schmidt
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Obituary for Paul W. Schmidt

Paul William Schmidt, 68, of Greenville, Illinois passed away unexpectedly but peacefully, surrounded by his family, on November 22, 2017 at St. Luke’s Hospital.
The family will receive friends from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. on Saturday, November 25 at the Greenville First Presbyterian Church. The funeral service will be held at 2 p.m. and a cake reception will follow immediately. At his request, Paul’s body was cremated: a private family interment will take place at a later date.
Paul was born on December 9, 1948 in St. Louis, MO, to Paul and Rosemary (née Suliburk) Schmidt. He was joined by sisters Anne and Amy before his father’s untimely death in a 1954 worksite accident. The loss of his father remained a defining feature of his life, instilled in him an intense love of family, and drove him to extraordinary lengths to make everyone around him feel special and welcomed. He never met a stranger and was particularly known for his enthusiastic greetings, usually followed with a giant hug, big kiss, or hearty handshake.
After attending Our Lady of Providence Elementary/Middle School and St. John Vianney High School in St. Louis, Paul went on to earn a Bachelors of Engineering degree at the University of Missouri-Rolla and a Masters of Civil Engineering at Purdue University. From his graduation to the end of his career, Paul worked for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, managing locks and dams along the Mississippi River. He was proudest of overseeing the building of the new Lock & Dam #26 at Alton, IL.
Although he loved his work, Paul’s real passion was his family. He spent as much time as possible with them, and was an amazing husband, Dad, and Grandad. He married Beverly Wise on August 12, 1972 and they enjoyed 45 happy and adventure-filled years together. He is also survived by his daughter Stephanie Schmidt, husband Bob Baker and their children Ben and Libby of Kirkwood, MO; daughter Valerie Toothman, husband Josh and their unborn twin boys of New York City, NY; daughter Julie Oestreich, husband Andrew and their sons Matthew and Calin of St. Charles, MO; parents-in-law Don and Ginny Wise of Greenville; sister Anne Schmidt and husband Robin Lightfoot of Cedaredge, CO; sister Amy Schmidt Stowe and husband Ned of Silver Spring, MD; sister-in-law Nancy Brown of Newark, Delaware; and brother-in-law Tom Wise and wife Janet of Rochester, IL. He leaves behind countless beloved cousins, nieces, nephews and friends who will miss him dearly.
In addition to spending time with people he loved, Paul’s many passions included playing ice hockey, running trains of all sizes, traveling extensively with Bev and friends, researching genealogy, watching Blues hockey and Cardinals baseball, cheering for Vianney and the Greenville Comets, drinking great wine and cold Budweiser, cooking with bacon fat and real butter, dressing up as Mr. Wizard for Mardi Gras celebrations, making and appreciating music, volunteering at the American Farm Heritage Museum, and supporting the Simple Room. A true man of causes, he served as a Deacon, Elder, and Clerk of Session at the First Presbyterian Church, as a BCCU#2 School Board Member and Board President, and as a volunteer Engineer and Safety Officer at the American Farm Heritage Museum. He also served on the Greenville Zoning Board and spent years of his life coaching and supporting his daughters and grandkids in their many activities.
Paul was an incandescent, inimitable man who lived by his own advice to make your own roads in life, and he lived and loved big and bold to the end. His exuberance, thoughtfulness, determination, leadership, work ethic and unmitigated joy for living and giving drew people to him. His life was truly a celebration every day, and he will be sorely missed. For those who desire to memorialize Paul, gifts may be made to the American Farm Heritage Museum, Railroad Division at the service or via www.PayPal.me/PSchmidtRRMemorial.

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Previous Events

Visitation

Saturday

25

Nov

11:00 AM 11/25/2017 11:00:00 AM - 2:00 PM 11/25/2017 2:00:00 PM
Greenville First Presbyterian Church

501 North Idler Lane
Greenville, IL 62246

Greenville First Presbyterian Church
501 North Idler Lane Greenville 62246 IL
United States

Memorial Service

Saturday

25

Nov

2:00 PM 11/25/2017 2:00:00 PM
Greenville First Presbyterian Church

501 North Idler Lane
Greenville, IL 62246

Greenville First Presbyterian Church
501 North Idler Lane Greenville 62246 IL
United States
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