A funeral service will be held for Irvin Schmidt, 85, of Arapaho, at 10 a.m. Friday at the First Mennonite Church in Clinton.
He died Friday, Aug. 9, 2019, at Grace Living Center in Clinton.
Schmidt was born Sept. 11, 1933, to A.P. and Hilda Schmidt.
He served in the U.S. Air Force. During four years serving in the Air Force R.O.T.C program at Oklahoma State University, he was commissioned and served as a navigator and instructor on the C-124 aircraft. When the mission was changed to fighter aircraft, the reserve navigators at Tinker Air Force Base were not needed and he resigned the commission to serve. Through the Korean and Vietnam wars he accumulated more than 40 years in the Air Force before his retirement.
His first job after active military service was as a vocational agriculture teacher at Dale, as well as a volunteer fireman. He stayed for 13 years and then came home to the family farm west of Clinton when his father passed away.
Schmidt worked as a Custer County extension agent assistant, and was also a disaster preparedness volunteer for Clinton. After the farm was sold to settle his father’s estate, the family moved into Clinton.
He taught and served as principal at Corn Bible Academy. He then worked at Weatherford and Clinton High Schools, where he retired from the public-school system.
Schmidt was retired for 20 years. To stay busy, he attended the First Mennonite Church and volunteered his time at American Legion Post No. 41, Clinton Gideon Camp, Triad, Clinton AARP Chapter, Farmers Union, and the Retired Educators Association.
He was awarded the 2010 Clinton Citizen of the Year award and the 2016 Epsilon Sigma Alpha Distinguished Achievement award for Oklahoma.
Schmidt was a family man and welcomed any chance to spend time with all his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He enjoyed sports, especially if family members were participating.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 55 years, Pauline (Muno) Schmidt; his parents; a daughter, Paula Hayen; two sisters, Mary Bell Thomas and LaVeta Rogers; and three grandsons, Justin and Michael Schmidt and Samuel Schenewolf.
Survivors include three daughters, Melody Johnson and husband Ray of Mustang, Katherine Ford and husband Kirk of Arapaho, and Holly Stratton and husband Brett of Clinton; two sons, Irving Schmidt and wife Angie of Weatherford, and Leslie Schmidt and wife DaLene of Dill City; and 10 grandchildren, Hilda Alexander and husband Aron, Josephine Schenewolf and husband Gary, Nicholas Kliewer and wife Ashley, Dacia Belter and husband Cory, Amy Thornburg and husband Sean, Weston Schmidt and wife Sara, DaLey McGuire and husband Quinton, Linley Byrd and fiancé Brian Sapp, Kinley Ford and Lanie Stratton
He is also survived by 24 great-grandchildren, Atticus and Aster Alexander, Justin and Irwin Schenewolf, Kennedy, Jillian and Lawson Kliewer, Diem, Dace and Daisy Belter, Jude and Levon Thornburg, Sammy, Gabe, Wyatt and Benjamin Schmidt, Levi, Titus and Rowan McGuire, Colt Byrd, and Rilynn, Braxton, Bryson and Kinzlee Sapp; two sisters, Betty Jo Hill and Joyce Manning; and a host of cousins, friends and loved ones.
Memorials may be made in Schmidt’s honor to Gideon Memorial Bibles, Corn Bible Academy or Western Oklahoma Christian School.